Joe Yonan

Journalist, cookbook author

Washington, DC

Joe Yonan

Food and Dining editor of The Washington Post
Weeknight Vegetarian columnist
Author of "Eat Your Vegetables: Bold Recipes for the Single Cook"


Free Range on Food


A gardener’s favorite ingredient: Accidental flowers

The best thing about cultivating a vegetable and herb garden — no matter how small — might just be the flowers. I don’t mean the flowers you planted to add decoration, or even the ones you are growing specifically because of their edibility, like nasturtiums. I mean the bonus flowers, the ones that with a different mind-set you might not appreciate.
The Washington Post Link to Story

Free Range on Food


The shockingly beeflike veggie burger that’s not aimed at vegetarians

In Seth Goldman’s vision of the supermarket meat case of the future, he doesn’t see a meat case at all. He sees a protein case. And only some of the proteins in it will come from animals. “I want to see chicken protein, plant protein, beef protein,” he says. “Just like what has happened in the dairy case.”.
The Washington Post Link to Story

Tofu shows it can play yet another part. This time, it acts like feta.

I’ve baked it, fried it, steamed it and eaten it raw. I’ve crumbled it, seasoned it and persuaded it to play the part of eggs (in a scramble and a salad) and even meat (in a “chorizo”). And every time I think I’ve pushed the limits of tofu, it surprises me by going further. The latest iteration?
The Washington Post Link to Story

How José Andrés turns Brussels sprouts into a vibrant, light salad

F or years, one of the most popular dishes at Jaleo in downtown Washington has been something that José Andrés came up with on the fly after a tour of the Penn Quarter FreshFarm Market. It’s a salad of Brussels sprouts and seasonal (summer-turning-to-autumn) fruit, dressed simply with a sherry vinaigrette and garnished with salty cubes of jamon serrano, the prized ham of his native Spain.
The Washington Post Link to Story

Wisdom from a ‘vegetable butcher’ can get you through farmers market season

I’m sure this has happened to you: You spy some piece of produce that looks great and interesting at the market (farmers, super or otherwise), and then you get home and think, “What the heck do I do now?”. Cara Mangini knows you well, because you’re just the customer she was hired to help as one of the first “vegetable butchers” at New York City’s Eataly.
The Washington Post Link to Story

The fruit that makes everything taste better

I try not to, but I often take lemons for granted. I’ll buy a few more than I need for a recipe, drop the extras into a refrigerator drawer and forget them for weeks. Then one day, I’ll be scrounging around trying to put a meal together with what seems like nothing, and I’ll reach for one. A squeeze into a pot of just-cooked beans simultaneously lifts the flavors and pulls them together; a grating of the zest into a salad dressing takes it from dull to bright in an instant.
The Washington Post Link to Story

The 10-minute veggie burger recipe you’ve been waiting for

Let’s review the issues with veggie burgers, shall we? It’s been a while since I vented about this, but I’ll keep it brief. I’ll even boil it down to a simple equation that I think captures the bulk of the problems: If they’re not fall-apart dry, they’re bean-dip mushy. I’ve jumped through many a hoop to correct such problems in veggie burger recipes of my own design (or adaptation), but that doesn’t mean I’ve stopped searching.
The Washington Post Link to Story

To make the best mushroom taco ever, fry and fry again

A surefire way to add texture to a mushroom taco? Fry those funghi. That’s what chef Alexis Samayoa does at Espita Mezcaleria in the District, giving a crisp, lacy edge to meaty maitake mushrooms without covering up their flavor with a batter. Samayoa takes a refreshingly minimalist approach to tacos, but each element gets plenty of attention, including the masa he makes from scratch to build the tortillas and the salsa that gets a touch of smoke from a little nip of mezcal.
The Washington Post Link to Story

Make a show-stopping spring risotto without much effort

In my great spring rush to cook asparagus, over and over — finally, a fresh, non-leafy green vegetable at the farmers market! I always include risotto in the rotation. When I snap the ends of asparagus to trim it, I save them up to make a one-vegetable broth, and use that to swell the short-grain rice in the classic Italian dish.
The Washington Post Link to Story

To get out of a vegetarian-cooking rut, go global

The forward-thinking way to cook is this: You dip into a world of cuisines, adapting them as befits your own kitchen, your willingness to experiment and the availability of ingredients. That’s what Marie Simmons does, and that’s what she advocates in her new book, “Whole World Vegetarian” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016), a celebration of global plant-based cooking.
The Washington Post Link to Story


Joe Yonan

Joe Yonan is the two-time James Beard Award-winning Food and Dining editor of The Washington Post and author of "Eat Your Vegetables: Bold Recipes for the Single Cook” (Ten Speed Press, 2013), which was named among the best cookbooks of 2013 by The Atlantic, The Boston Globe, and NPR's "Here and Now.” In 2011, he wrote “Serve Yourself: Nightly Adventures in Cooking for One,”. which Serious Eats, David Lebovitz, and the San Francisco Chronicle named to their best-of-the-year lists.

Joe was a food writer and Travel section editor at The Boston Globe before moving to Washington in 2006 to edit the Post’s Food section. He writes the Post’s Weeknight Vegetarian column and for five years wrote the Cooking for One column, both of which have won honors from the Association of Food Journalists. He also writes regularly about his efforts to grow food on his 150-square-foot urban front yard. His work from the Globe and Post has appeared in four editions of the “Best Food Writing” anthology.

In addition to his writing and editing, Joe frequently speaks about his work at conferences, book festivals and other events, and has taught many cooking classes through such venues as Central Market, Stonewall Kitchen, Culinaerie, L’Academie de Cuisine and SideTour.

Joe, who grew up in West Texas, spent 2012 in North Berwick, Maine, on leave from the Post to learn about growing and homesteading from his sister and brother-in-law and to work on “Eat Your Vegetables.” He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and the Cambridge (Mass.) School of Culinary Arts.