The Chicago Food Swap was founded in 2011 by food bloggers Emily Paster and Vanessa Druckman. Emily continues to run the Chicago Food Swap and organize its monthly events.

The Chicago Food Swap brings together passionate home cooks, bakers, and gardeners to trade and swap their homemade and homegrown foods. No money changes hands and all exchanges are by barter only. All the participants are individuals trading items that they made, grew or raised themselves.

The Chicago Food Swap meets every month. Past swap hosts include Chicago’s premier recreational cooking school, The Chopping Block; Free Range Office, a co-working space; and Green Home Experts, a green lifestyle boutique in Oak Park. Since September 2014, the Chicago Food Swap has a permanent home at the Fearless Food Kitchen in the Broadway Armory Fieldhouse. 

Typically fifty swappers attend each event.  Items swapped include sweet and savory baked goods, candies, dips and spreads such as hummus and pesto, sauces and dressings, granola, jams and jellies, pickles, salsa, drink syrups and sodas, flavored sugars and salts, extracts, homegrown produce, backyard eggs and much more!

Participants in Chicago Food Swap events register in advance and the swaps regularly fill up. In between events, the Chicago Food Swap community stays in touch through an email newsletter and social media, such as the group’s Facebook page. 

If you have any questions about the Chicago Food Swap, please email Emily at westoftheloop at gmail.com.

You can also sign up for our email list:


Looking forward to swapping with you soon.