Jill Lightner                                       

food & sustainability

writer & editor 

My grandfather knew how to dress on the days when he'd take a steer for a walk through town. 



Scraps with Nautilus_edited.jpg

Manage your kitchen for less waste through practical strategies, tips, and advice on food purchasing, prep, composting, and storage.

Topics and features include:

  • 70+ recipes

  • Money-saving tips

  • Three levels of action for every topic, to help you figure out what's doable

  • Portioning to avoid leftovers on the plate

  • Meal planning vs. freestyle cooking

  • Grocery shopping and dining-out tactics

  • Storage strategies and how to read expiration dates

Winner of 2018 Gold Nautilus Book Award: Green Living and Sustainability

“I thought I knew enough about reducing food waste, but Scraps, Peels, and Stems showed me how much more I could do—and inspired me to actually do it. Jill Lightner has written an invaluable resource: realistic and empowering, with tips on everything from re-crisping stale cereal (!) to growing vegetables from food scraps, plus recipes for Feta-Brined Lamb Kebabs, Shrimp Shell Stock, and more. This is a vitally important book for every kitchen.” ­– Molly Wizenberg, author of A Homemade Life and Delancey

"I love everything about Jill Lightner's Scraps, Peels, and Stems: the brilliant writing, the delicious recipes, and most of all, the commonsense approach to an enormously important subject that has, until now, received little attention: the serious problem of food waste. Enlightening, absorbing, and inspiring, Scraps, Peels, and Stems is a must-have addition to every kitchen bookshelf."  Elissa Altman, author of Poor Man's Feast, Treyf, and Motherland: a Memoir. 

"This book will give you the resources that you need to start winning your own fight against waste in the most meaningful ways possible and I bet you'll find yourself saving money, eating healthier, and appreciating food more too!"  

­– Ben Simon, Founder and CEO of Imperfect produce

"What Jill Lightner has given us with Scraps, Peels, Stems is a brilliant, modern day, “waste not, want not” manifesto, which combines straightforward recipes and thoughtful tips that make us think before we toss. This book is something no cook or eater should be without. It’s genius. It’s inspirational. And it should become the tool for defining how well we can feed ourselves, not our landfills." – Tracey Ryder, co-founder of Edible Communities

Cooking From Scratch

Starred reviews: Publishers Weekly and Library Journal 

The Mason Bee Revolution

Edible Seattle: The Cookbook


I also get written about! Here's a fun one where I helped Bethany Jean Clement of The Seattle Times get her pantry organized after Marie Kondo inspired her to de-clutter. It's true, pinenuts are expensive little jerks.

"COUNTERINTUITIVE as it seems, restaurateurs have a universal fear of silence."

"I, A CHATTY eight-year-old, was pestering other non-queasy folks on the boat with questions, when my neighbor hollered, “fish on!”

Saving Chinook



"THE DOUGHNUT is the dumb blonde of the pastry world. Buoyant and pillowy as a breast implant, it promises delight while innocently denying potential consequences." 

Screw Krispy Kreme

Seattle Weekly


white hair.jpg

My first piece of food writing coincided with the first Krispy Kreme shop coming to the Seattle suburbs; John T. Edge kicked off his book Donuts: An American Passion with excerpts from that story. My strong opinions about doughnuts led to restaurant criticism and food writing for two years at Seattle Weekly, six years as editor of James Beard-winning magazine Edible Seattle, and three years in the marketing department for the largest member-owned food co-op in the U.S. Along the way, I've edited two books, and written three and a recipe app. 

I currently write a recipe and pairing column for CiderCraft Magazine, contribute food stories to The Seattle Times and Pacific NW Magazine, and write about food waste and access issues for PCC Community Markets. I also speak about food waste issues and solutions. 



Thanks! I'll be in touch.

Follow me:

  • Instagram Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Black LinkedIn Icon