It Just Shattered & Kitchen Disasters

Cupboard space is at an absolute premium in my urban San Diego kitchen. 

Stuffed much?

So when I went to “push” a bag of sugar back into the cupboard, it “pushed out” a jar of caramel sauce.

It was one of those in slow motion moments.


And it just went splat and shattered when it hit the travertine floor.

The first words out of my mouth were, “Oh Fu*k!” “Oh Fudge!” .  And I don’t mean vegan fudge.

Nothing quite like cleaning sticky caramel sauce with shards of glass embedded in it off the floor. And then hauling out the broom, dustpan, mop, and vacuum and cleaning the floors 17 times just to make sure I got all teeny tiny glass shards cleaned up.

Because I swear, this glass was like dust.

Just beautiful, dusty, razor shards.  Everywhere.  Countertops, the floor, it just multiplied.

I uttered many choice words during the hour long cleanup session.  Just what I had planned on during my busy day, of course.

In the end, I was not as upset that I wasted a perfectly good hour.  I was not upset that I had to clean sticky, gooey, runny caramel with glass shards embedded in it and use an entire roll of paper towels in the process.

No, I was quite ticked that a perfectly great jar of caramel sauce was wasted!  Good thing TJ’s and the grocery store is my second home and I can pick up another jar soon.

You may want to know that I was putting away the sugar because I was making a Microwave Blueberry Banana Oat Cake

An hour later, I finally got my oat cake.


From my last post about Quitting the Gym, I am so glad the post resonated with so many of you.  Thanks for the awesome comments!  Some of you really derive benefit from your gym memberships and that’s great.

For others, not so much.  It was refreshing to hear just how many of you have also quit going to the gym, or would like to quit your gym membership and do other things like walks or runs outdoors, or yoga.   

And for me, it was time to move on from the gym and get my workouts accomplished other ways.  And in much more efficient ways.  Life changes, our needs and desires change, and it’s important to stay flexible and roll with the punches of life.  I’d rather do yoga at home than lift and grunt in the gym these days.


1. Do you swear?

Yes, I have a potty mouth and although I try not to write swear words on my blog, in real life, yes, I do swear.  Good thing I was the only one home while dealing with broken glass, sticky caramel sauce, and a few F-bombs dropped.

2. Have you ever had a kitchen disaster?  Any spills, breaks, cracks, leaks, dropping things, burning things, fires, etc?

I have had plenty.

Setting off the smoke detector by accidentally burning tofu in the oven that I swear went from raw to charred in the span of 4 minutes.   My house stunk like burnt food (carbony/charcoaley) + decomposing soybeans (tofu) for days.  It was nasty.

Thankfully the Mango Ginger Maple Tofu turned out, in the end.

Then there was the time last summer when I had a gallon of hot, sugared, brewed tea in a glass jar waiting to cool off because I make my own komboucha at home.

Well, the jar cracked and a gallon of hot, sugary tea went all over my countertops, into 5 kitchen drawers with utensils, silverware, pots and pans, dish towels, you name it.  Pretty much every single gadget, utensil and daily-use items in 5 very full kitchen drawers were soaked in sugary tea.  Not to mention it was all over the floors.

The immediate cleanup took about 3 hours, but for months later, I was finding sweet tea droplets on handles of spatulas and on the sides of drawers.  It was a nightmare! Since then, I only use tempered glass.  I know Jessica has even had exploding Pyrex all over her oven so glass isn’t foolproof.

And then there was the time I almost burnt Roasted Coconut & Ginger Peanut Butter Carrots

Nothing quite like the smell of charred peanut butter.  Good thing I caught these just in time and that Scott likes well-done food.

What are some of your kitchen disasters?


  1. man, that is QUITE the mess. glad you remembered to snap a photo before you started cleaning – haha! a true blogger’s mind at work. just glad you or skylar did not get cut.
    i don’t have a potty mouth, but a well-placed F^$%#^!!! is very therapeutic sometimes!
    i’ve done the same thing, dropped a glass container and made a mess. the last time i did it, i was late to something and the husband kindly cleaned up for me – i owe him!
    hope the rest of your day was better than that hour of clean-up!

  2. Aww! I get really high-strung when I break or spill something. Or, as when I last cooked venison, I set off the smoke alarm. It wasn’t even burning! Bloody fanless stove they’ve stuck us with. But spillage is the worst because of the wasted product.

    My language could make a sailor blush if I get -really- worked up. Normally, I just have an excitable little potty mouth. “Let’s go see ‘Chicago’!” “F*ck yeah!!!” I get it from my father. If I’m really swearing blue streak, he’ll just say “Mimi, keep a civil tongue in your head.”

    Oh, and for your gym post — I totally feel you. For me, I feel more “in the zone” when I’m at the gym, so I go, but I wish I liked working out at home more. Have you ever used a TRX? It’s one of the few home things I like to do. It’s a suspension trainer you can hook on a door. I love doing rows and pushups with it.

  3. I have a kitchen disaster from working in a tiny cafe kitchen. We cooked massive brunches for the customers and one morning I grabbed a metal handle of a pot that had been standing over an open burner for at least half an hour! You better believe there was a lot of foul language uttered that day.

    Your picture of the caramel sauce is great, it just spells out sticky frustration! Glad to hear you got your oat cake in the end :).

  4. awww no :( I hate bnreaking glass! its the absolute WORST to clean up for sure! just when you think you’re done you find all new glass shards everywhere! so sorry that happened, but like you said, its over, in the past, and you will be back at TJ’s probably today LOL

    those roasted carrots with PB and coconut sound ummm FANTASTIC!!!! I cant wait to get more creative in the kitchen soon enough!

  5. I have had a HUGE COSTCO 3 lb bag of coffee beans ( coffee beans don’t weigh that much so picture VOLUME) fall out of the cupboard and explode spreading coffee beans over the entire kitchen floor, under the oven, fridge washer, dishwasher, etc. Those coffee beans seemed to pop up for a year.

    Also at Christmas had a bag of flour fall off the top of the fridge and make a powdered mess that took eons to clean up.

    My sympathy. I hate sticky AND glass. Hard tiles make glass just spread everywhere! Think of the good workout it was cleaning up though. :)

  6. My two-year old breaks things all the time. Get rid of those bags and slowly add in stackable containers. They help so much-my kitchen is small too and I started using sauce jars, bought tupperware, etc. Huge space difference. I also noticed a huge bag of what looks like Chia seeds. If I am correct, where did you buy such a bulk amount at once? I like to eat it every day and it would be nice to buy it bulk like that.

  7. OH NO! Sorry about the caramel spillage :( I’d die since I love caramel too much, haha.

    And yes, I swear like a sailor.

  8. I have more kitchen mishaps and disasters to mention. I’m such a klutz. I am not much of a potty mouth, though, unless I’m really, really angry. If I just drop and break something I’m likely to say “Suuuugar!” or “Rats!”. I think because I grew up in a house where I couldn’t even say the words “shut up” or “sucks” or any even mild language, it just became a habit to use alternative words. :-)

  9. My worst kitchen disaster was an exploding stove-top espresso maker. When I assembled it, I missed a piece, and when it heated up the whole thing just blew up, spilling hot espresso everywhere! We were very lucky that no one was hurt. We had to paint the whole kitchen three times, and still could see some ‘freckles’ here and there.
    Plus, that day was my birthday and the house was full of guests. Ugh.
    I’m not much of a potty mouth, I’d rather burst into tears when disaster strikes.

  10. Augh, that always seems to happen at the MOST inconvenient times! And of course it has to be taken care of immediately when there’s glass involved. Glad it wasn’t any irreplaceable though. I’ve had my fair share of kitchen mishaps too… it’s a part of the foodie world. ;)

  11. I’m pretty bad with swearing, especially when I’m mad/annoyed/etc.

    One of my kitchen disasters was when I was running late for school, my big purse was on my shoulder and when I swung around, I knocked two glass cups off of the counter. (one being my favorite mug) Luckily my mom helped me clean it up so I wasn’t late for school, but it was so frustrating!!

  12. I have a bit of a potty mouth as well. (Maybe I should cut back on my swearing because with my Boston accent, I must SOUND wicked Freakin’ trashy). I don’t swear in my blog because I think it sound horrible. I am very sophisticated in my writing, Ha ha

    I have had numerous baking disasters. Without a doubt, my fire alarm goes off every time I cook. Its not me though, its the sensitive alarm, dirty stove and crappy pots and pans. ;)

  13. Ah, one time… I was working as a waitress in highschool. I was rushing around making a chocolate milkshake for a customer…. I had it all made, then turned to grab something else and knocked the (uncovered) cup over onto ALL of the clean dishes. The dishwasher was not impressed with me!

  14. When I was growing up my parents had a habit of swearing in Italian, and I’ve sort of picked up on it.
    Instead of “oh, fudge” you should have said “oh, caramel sauce!” ;)

    The oat cake looks worth the wait…yum!

  15. It’s a toss-up: Either store things in Tupperware and risk the carcinogenic substances, or use glass jars and risk breakage. Since I no longer have kids to worry about, I’ve been switching to glass jars for the past year. Only had one breakage so far; Rob whacked the jar of raisins on the cupboard door and broke it into a few big pieces. At least it was easy to clean, since all the glass stuck to the raisins.

    Yeah, I’ve been known to drop a few F bombs, but I try to control myself when others are around, including my husband. He does NOT like swearing.

  16. Aww, man. I did that once at a Whole Foods! I bumped into a stack of caramel jars and knocked one off… Oooops.
    I don’t swear. Swearing actually kind of makes me uncomfortable… and I got made fun of a lot for it in college, but even if I try it just sounds wrong coming from me! :P

  17. Oh no, what a sticky mess. It actually looks like one of those trick fake ones. Too bad it wasn’t! I’ve had the same thing happen with a non tempered giant glass stein while steeping tea for guests last summer. It cracked and started running everywhere, doesn’t sound like as big of a mess as your kombucha tea though. I go through periods where I break lots of things in the kitchen. Thankfully my husband likes well done food too. I don’t at all, so he always gets the dark grilled daiyas ;)

  18. Hi :) I have started following your blog recently and I really enjoy it :) Your kitchen disaster made me smile a bit ;) I’m sure it wasn’t funny at all for you when you had to mop sticky sauce off the flour, but it reminded me of several of my own “achievements” in the kitchen, which are actually one of very few things that make me swear ;) Just yesterday I was making crackers inspired by one of your recipes. So I put flax, safflower and pumpkin seeds into my food processor and started processing WITH THE LID HALF-OPEN. How clever it was of me :D Of course, the seeds were flying all over the kitchen. And yes, I did swear :) Not all of them flew out of the blender though, and finally I managed to make the crackers which turned out delicious :)

  19. I do swear…I have been trying to quit for years ;) My husband can have a real potty mouth, my Mom’s face was priceless the first time he said F*(K in front of her when we were dating…now it doesn’t faze her at all.

  20. I’ve also lifted the little flap on our burr coffee grinder while it was running…yep it sprays ground coffee Everywhere!

  21. Oh girl you know I swear ;-) I am such a klutz that I have broken my fair share of “things” in the kitchen. I’ve suddenly become prone to burning myself recently. Not sure what that’s all about. Guess it’s better than cutting myself chopping veggies and such.

  22. I always freak out when I smash glass, because I’m never sure I”ve swept it all up! With this, though, I’d probably by licking the caramel sauce of the floor regardless of splinters :P

  23. First off, I curse like a freakin’ sailor! Second, I am a kitchen disaster. I have spilled, burned, broken…just about anything and everything. Sorry about the caramel.

  24. Oh no!! I would have been more upset that I lost a bottle of sauce too! I don’t have a potty mouth – I try not to curse!

  25. This is truly tragic!! Broken caramel sauce… OH NO!! :) I can imagine how long it would take, not a fun job.

  26. I swear & swear & swear. I used to be a sweet girl but then I played the bass & hung out with bass players & learned to curse like a sailor. People know I am not really being myself in F** isn’t used as a noun, adjective & verb in a visit. I try to keep my trap shut, but with proper training, I sound like one the boys.

  27. I swear you have my life these days! 1st computer trouble and then glass shards everywhere! Just the other day, my daughter grabbed my glass off the table and dropped it onto our tile floor! Thankfully she wasn’t hurt, but I do understand the cleaning the floor a zillion times—the pieces were everywhere! It was sad about the caramel though. :)

  28. I don’t swear much — but every once in a while they blurt out. Usually I just keep them inside! And if you get me ticked off enough I’ll let it all out.

    Averie I feel for you with that caramel sauce — I hate stuff breaking. I hate wondering if I cleaned everything good enough, or if I’m going to end up with a big hunk of glass in my foot. I’ve dropped entire blender containers full of smoothies (thankfully the blender didn’t shatter but I had smoothie EVERYWHERE), beers have fallen out of the fridge, a container of flour fell out of the cupboard (that was one of the worst spills for me). It sucks!

  29. I don’t know how…but I definitely made a smoothie without putting the lid on my blender. The dangers of breakfast at 5am I guess!

  30. When this happened to me (it was a jar of applesauce), I found a piece of glass a few days later on the counter behind my stovetop. I couldn’t believe a jar hitting the floor sent a piece of glass up onto my countertop!

  31. Remember me!? I’m still here reading I promise! Life is just chugging along! I have quite the potty mouth. Luckily, my boss does too, so it’s not really a problem. I really should try to nip that in the butt, but I just can’t help it.

  32. on no!!! I have dropped and broken so many things and cried over it. I hate wasting things, especially food, but sometimes it happens. Sucks, but hey part of life.

  33. omg what a mess. That’s not funny :(

  34. Oh I have a few choice words to say when things fall and break :) especially if it was sticky caramel sauce. I can vouch for the small cupboard space. Ours are so small that I have to leave stuff on te counter. I hate it!

  35. My worst kitchen disaster was more like an entire-apartment disaster. My former roommate had an adorable dog that unfortunately had separation anxiety. One day we came home and the dog had gotten into the cupboard and found an un-opened package of coffee. She tore through the whole thing and we had coffee grounds ALL OVER our apartment, all ground into the carpeting, too. She ate a lot of the coffee so was incredibly hyper and sick all day! No matter how much we vacuumed, our apartment smelled like Dunkin’ Donuts Hazelnut for months (which actually wasn’t so bad) :)

  36. hey averie!

    i am the queen of kitchen disasters and have had my share of messes to clean up (both at home and in an industrial size kitchen). i’m also a bit of a messy cook. eep! :-)

    one tip about working with glass and hot food: make sure the glass is the same temperature as your hot food before adding the hot food to it. this will avoid (minimize) the occurrence of glass cracking. i can my food and have the glass canning jars heating in the oven (at 200F I believe; not that hot) before I fill them with hot food to be canned. the tricks:

    1. make sure the glass can be heated
    2. put the room temperature glasses in the oven while the oven is OFF, to allow the glass to heat up as the oven heats up
    3. handle with potholders!!



  37. Averie… I cannot tell you how much I sympathize! The amount of times I’ve INJURED myself in the kitchen is enough to attest to how many disasters I’ve had! But you know what? If you’re not experiencing kitchen disasters, then I figure you’re really not spending very much time in the kitchen. As true foodies, it’s bound to happen. That’s how we get our hands dirty.

    And as far as cursing goes, I used to NEVER curse. That kind of all changed when I met my potty-mouthed soul mate… When you begin growing together, it’s hard not to share mannerisms! I’m not complaining though… it’s a reminder to me that Scott and I go together (Yes, I love a “Scott” just like you!). :)

    Not sure if I’ve ever commented before, by the way, so FYI: I love your blog! Especially lately since I’ve started a more raw diet. Thanks for everything you do!

  38. I honestly don’t swear much. I guess I do sometimes when I’m with others my age…but I just don’t think it sounds nice. Oh but I swear like a sailor when I’m singing along to Eminem ;)

  39. My first thought was “oh no the caramel sauce!!” But you live close to TJs, so….lucky.

    Kitchen disaster should be my middle name, seriosly. I’ve almost burned my house down from small fires in my stove and toaster oven, I’ve exploded eggplant in my oven, I’ve dropped and shattered many many glass jars, and just yesterday I opened a bag of alfafa seeds for my sprouts, which I store in a glass jar, and it ripped and those TEENY TINY went everywhere. Literally, everywhere. I am sure I will be finding them until I move out.

  40. I’d like to say no…but yes I definitely swear. Sometimes only certain words will do the trick for my mood.

    The last time I made a HUGE mess was when I was a teen. I was trying to get a jar of pickles open and I couldn’t for the life of me. I got so frustrated I started chanting “please…open…now” while banging it on the counter. Well….see glass breaks if you hit it hard enough! Pickles, pickle juice, and glass went everywhere. Then I saw that my mom was pulling into the driveway and I freaked that she would be mad about the mess, so I grabbed the garbage can and started shoveling the whole mess into it. I was getting cut to heck and getting pickle juice into my wounds. Then my mom came in and said “what in the world is wrong with you?” and busted out laughing.

  41. Yikes, so sorry about the clean up job, I can only imagine the fun of that sticky mess!

    1. Yes, I try to moderate it and not swear at work. But profanity happens at home or out with friends. :-)
    2. Oh yes, plenty! From the coffee pot backing up, something sticky spilling on the top shelf of the fridge and running all down it, tomato sauce jars falling out of the fridge door, etc. – loads of fun.

  42. Ohh no that is a nightmare to clean up, I dropped an entire bag of chia seeds on the floor a few months ago and we are still finding them.. unfortunately they stick to just about everything!

  43. Oh my gosh, I drop things all the time! The worst was when I dropped a brand new glass bottle of maple syrup! What a mess, sticky sugary maple syrup and glass shards all over the kitchen. Happens to the best of us!

  44. Oh no! I hate when things like that happen :( I hate cleaning up and I hate wasting food! I would have been cursing up and down, haha.

  45. Ahhh! That totally just happened to me! I was washing my makeup brushes and the bowl with the baby shampoo in it, slipped out of my hands and shattered everywhere!

    I am a voiceover artist- the only time I swear is when I mess up a line- bad thing is EVERY swear I say is recorded! LOL

    Have a great day!

  46. Oh no! I ‘frigging’ HATE dropping things! Especially sticky sauces etc; nightmare.
    And that mango ginger maple tofu looks phenomenal. Thanks for the dinner inspiration!

  47. Poor, poor caramel sauce ~Sniff~
    I find that whenever anything glass breaks, the pieces go everywhere. Further than I expect, and in, behind, or under things I wouldn’t think of.

    Amazingly, while I was on vacation in Barbados for 2 weeks, barely 1 swear word came out of my mouth – or entered my mind for that matter. During the flight, in the airports, dealing with airline staff, security screening, and going through customs with other passengers is a whole other matter though. Some choice words were thought / spoken / muttered throughout.

    I had my first kitchen fire about a year ago while making caramel corn – hurray for baking soda and it’s fire squelching ability!
    Otherwise my daily clean up of my husband’s cooking is the extent of the kitchen “ughs”. He has gotten a lot better, cleans as he goes, doesn’t use every pot / pan in the house and I have learned to cherish “soaking” dishes / pots / pans while we get outside for a walk. The dishes will still be there, and be easier to clean :)

  48. Not even gonna start on all my kitchen disasters, would take all day.
    WOW they charge for childcare at 24Hr Fitness there? Ridic! I too am a 24Hr fitness member but pay like $25/month for access to all of them (there are 4 within 10miles of me). That includes their childcare too. I knew things were more $$ in CA but that’s crazy!

  49. The first thing I said when I saw that picture was “Oh no! Not the grout!!” I seriously said it out loud. I HATE cleaning grout. It’s such a pain. My major travesty is dropping knives on the kitchen floor. It’d be all fine and dandy if I had a tile floor like yours, but I didn’t want to clean the grout, so we opted for hardwood. Yaaa…. there are knife marks everywhere.
    I’ll have to read your post about quitting the gym, I guess I missed that one!

  50. Hi Averie – was it glass or the sea salt (fleur de sel)? Either way…bummmmmr!

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