PHOTO GALLERY: Queer in the Kitchen

Cat Baldwin / 34 / Brooklyn, NY (Bushwick) / Location manager/Illustrator

“I derive a lot of pleasure from experimenting with, cooking, eating and feeding new and time-tested recipes to my nearest and dearest and I have all the gadgetry to go along with such a hobby. That said, my FAVE gadget are tongs because I like to think of them as my ROBOT HANDS, capable of retrieving items from substances too hot for my human flesh. Robot hands forever.”


Sara (sitting w/ Pesto) and Hanna (standing w/ Odessa) / Both 26 / Brooklyn, NY / Technical Projects Manager and Photographer

“Sara collects tiny teacups and Hanna collects large coffee mugs. Pesto and Odessa collect bottle caps.”


Jenn / 28 / Minneapolis, MN / Graduate researcher

“When I transitioned from professional baker to professional student, having an adequate kitchen was really important to me. This kitchen, in all its pink glory, is extra special because it was originally designed by my landlord for her mother, a 90 year-old lesbian activist, and everyday I am reminded of the struggle and community we share.”


Kass/ 34 / Southern OH / Comic & Alt-meat entrepreneur

“I often have many helpers while I make food to the dulcet tones of NPR. My food processor and immersion blender tie for most prized items and I use my microwave as a food safe.”


Britt Ransom and Melissa Tran / 29 and 27 / Long Beach, CA / Assistant Professor of Sculpture and New Genres at California State University Long Beach, and Museum Educator at Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles

“Our Most Prized Kitchen Item: The Normann peeler. This might sound weird (because it is weird maybe), but we argue over who gets to peel vegetables and fruits because we love it so much. Apparently our dogs do too.”


Rachel Pritzlaff, Cilantro, Parinda Darden/ 26, 6, 25 / Astoria, Queens, NY / Dance Performer, Educator, and Non-Profit Administrator; Dog; Software Engineer

“Parinda loves to make Pad Thai, and Rachel loves to make Ritz Cracker Pie. They both love their Aeropress.”


Elle / 28 / Austin, TX (Photo: Ambrea Dean)


“Home of the best vegetarian breakfast tacos in Austin.”


Anna / 44 / Registered Nurse


“The kitchen is my favourite place in the house; a creative haven, a chemists theme park, and it is so close to our growing fruit and vegetables, which is great to look at after being at work. My favourite tools are a very sharp knife, a chopping board, my girlfriend’s wok, the couch in the kitchen, and the stove. My favourite ingredients is a lot (like 4 bulbs) of hand chopped hand peeled caramelised garlic, fresh lemon zest and juice from our great old lemon tree and olive oil. And parmesan. I am a bit of a recreational vegan as regards parmesan.”


Char, she pronoun / 26 / Montreal, Canada / Queer Tattoo artist

“I love my collection of dried flower bouquets all from ex dates! A true princess!”


Alex / 20 / Richmond, VA / Writer

“We have a bad habit of cooking the same three dishes over and over, lately we’ve been trying to diversify our eating habits more.”


Chinue Igwe / 25 / Oakland, CA / Sr. Admin Assistant at a mental health nonprofit (Photo: Erica, girlfriend)


“My most prized kitchen possession is my limited edition Xena Warrior Princess plaque that hangs next to my sink. I may be a terrible cook, but I’m an excellent lesbian.”


Pam Barrett / 25 / Cleveland Heights, OH / Writer


“I’m newly vegan, but never learned how to cook. I love listening to podcasts with comedians talking to each other while attempting a new meal, and then washing my dishes the next day.”


Emily / 19 / Davis, CA / Full-time English undergraduate, part-time copy editor


“My kitchen is small and doesn’t have enough counter space and the stove is electric instead of gas, which I hate, but it’s my real grown-up kitchen, in my first grown-up apartment, so despite its faults, I love it.”


Bridget / 24 / Columbus, OH / Licensed Social Worker on hiatus

“My kitchen accepts me and all of my failed baking attempts.”


Nana / 32 / Selangor, Malaysia / Freelance consultant

“I’m preparing salt and pepper grilled chicken with a dash of sesame oil. My kitchen is small and cozy with only the basic necessities (but with almost ALL of the essential Asian spices). The grilled chicken is easier to prepare with my super handy Double Pan which is definitely my favourite kitchen item at the moment!”


Kali / 32 / Chicago, IL / Elementary school music teacher


“I am one of those people who love to cook and bake for other people, I call it my inner soccer mom. Couple weeks ago, a friend suggested we get a birthday cake for another friend of ours … She was going to buy it. I went, oh HELL NO. I have a Kitchen-aid mixer, I have enough tins to make 100 mini-cupcakes at once, I make pie crust from scratch.”


Chae Fields / 32 / SF East Bay, CA / Owner and Head Chef of Eat Suite (We are a meal prep and catering company 100% owned and operated by women of color) (Photo: Miki Vargas Photography)

“I absolutely love to create unique dishes using simple ingredients so that our customers feel inspired to get busy in their own kitchens. Like my sweet potato lasagne, which is my favorite dish to prepare. It takes me nearly all day as each component is prepared from scratch but the final product is like nothing you’ve ever tasted before!”


Katie / 23 / Halifax, Nova Scotia / Law student


“I’m working my way to a completely pink, 1950’s inspired kitchen one item at a time. My Kitchen Aid stand mixer is by far my most prized possession.”


Megan / 23 / Hilo, HI / Horticultural Therapy Guide at Pacific Quest

“I woke up super early this morning and couldn’t fall back asleep, so I walked into the kitchen and just started cooking things. I ended up with a pumpkin curry soup, cinnamon toasted pumpkin seeds, and some avocado pesto. Some people get lost in playing music or painting or doing photography; I cook.”


Shan / 26 / Columbus, OH / Veterinary assistant by day, roller derby skater by night

“I like making plant based breakfasts. Pancakes and tofu scrambles are my go-to.”

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Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here. She's 37, has two kids, two dogs, one cat, one Megan, and some personal essays.

Laneia has written 889 articles for us.

132 Comments

  1. This is just the best thing ever.

    I whooped with laughter multiple times, alarming Gillian, who just happens to be in the kitchen baking.

    I feel like I have to look at these all over again and make proper notes about the ones I love which I think is all of them!

  2. This made me cry. All these beautiful, fantastic people looking so safe and comfy – I kept scrolling looking to see if I recognized any friends, but every one of these people could be mine. Community is a trip, y’all. I love it so much <3 <3 <3

    Also as someone with a really bad and stressful relationship to food, eating, and bodies who has never been able to cook for anyone or if someone is watching, I drew a lot of peace and inspiration from the messages about the kitchen being a welcoming place and a place that doesn't judge mistakes. I'm going to try harder!

  3. THIS IS SUCH A LOVELY IDEA WITH SUCH LOVELY PEOPLE IN IT. I’m just gonna compile my comments on pictures IN a word doc for this comment so this is probably gonna get long and I apologize. Really I want to comment on everyone’s picture but uuuh, that’s nine pages worth of pics so probs not a good idea.
    Alysia Angel: YOUR KITCHEN IS AMAZING. It’s vintage and perfect and those pastels are killing me aaaaaa
    Megan: you really made the best out of a small space and I really dig the red and black and sun + moon theme you’ve got up. It just looks really witchy and cool.
    Dani Rose: you made that “ugly” wallpaper WORK. I also dig the red and black color scheme you got (am I biased??? maybe)
    Reneice Charles: that picture + quote is perfection. That is all.
    Cole Lu: your mug collection is perfection and so is your shirt.
    Char: I too love your collection of dried bouquets from past dates and actually I like everything going on in this picture, A+ aesthetic
    Katie: those pastel pink accents aaaaaa. Your kitchen is super cute so far, you should totally share pictures if you ever hit your Barbie dreamhouse kitchen dreams.
    Kelsea + Hebe: I ALSO KNOW A BIG ORANGE CAT NAMED SADCAT WITH PERMANENT SADFACE?? But I live in Texas while y’all live in the UK, so not the same cat unfortunately.
    Geneva: UM THIS IS AMAZING? Please come decorate my house
    Sarah and Sheldon: WHAT A HANDSOME COUPLE. Such majestic floof + cat decorations.
    Kristin and Zowie X: alright so everything about these pictures are on point but also IS THAT A REAL CHAMELEON??
    Tldr: everyone is amazing and perfect that is all

  4. Oh wow this is such a great idea for a series, I love it! Really cool to see some fellow Dubliners in here! (Also if there was ever any doubt that these are my people, the abundance of cats in these photos definitely sorted that out!)

  5. Wow! Three things. A) this is awesome! Kitchens and Queers… Two of my most favorite things. B) how the heck did I miss the call for this??? 3) suddenly feeling like I’m one of the few single people on autostraddle! Lookin good y’all!

  6. literally crying at my work cube scrolling through this. thank you laneia and everyone who contributed. this is beautiful and so important and you made my little queer therapist heart feel so held. #youcantdeleteus

  7. Oh! This is lovely. Look at everybody’s faces!! It’s one thing seeing a bunch of happy queers in the A-Camp photos, but it feels so different seeing everyone hanging out in their natural environments, and in the hearts of their homes no less. It’s really, really nice to see the huge spectrum of people all across the lands who gravitate here, and with this kind of intimacy, I guess (even before the partial nudity). The same goes for the ones without a human in them – it’s just a really nice (and kind of anthropologically fascinating) snapshot of people’s lives. Anyway, this has made my day. Thanks to all who submitted for inviting us all in out of the cold, bitter Trumpian winter for an evening. What an awesome idea for a series.

  8. Oh wow. So many emotions while scrolling through these. Heart-warming, content, warm-fuzzy, feeling like I belong on this earth and aching tear-jerking were probably the two predominant emotions there.

    And so many thoughts. But I’m just gonna ask – what is that appliance I kept seeing in the pictures that looks like it’s either a front-loading washing machine or a dishwasher with a circular window? Is it a washing machine in the kitchen or a dishwasher like I’ve never seen before? Oh, and also say that I had so much fun google-mapping where you all are from.

  9. all of your kitchens are so cute! all of your dogs and cats are so good! (phryne fisher! that is the best name for a cat ever.) all of you are so wonderful!
    i love kitchens. a lot.
    as someone who’s struggled lately with not feeling like i belong in the LGBT community– like everyone else is cooler and gayer and has already established cliques/squads/friend groups that don’t have room for a newly-out-ish baby dyke who looks like a straight girl– it feels warm and fuzzy and validating to have my picture smack-dab in the middle of the rest of you queers like it’s the most natural thing in the world.

  10. 1) I love you all.

    2) Emily in Philadelphia, PA: your kitchen with its newly installed teal backsplash in my kitchen of dreams

    3) Can someone remake The L Word and cast Britt Ransom and Melissa Tran / 29 and 27 / Long Beach, CA as the new Bette/Tina?? (You, your neon sign & jobs are awesome.)

    • Yeah, that’s where the University of Maine is so I wonder if that has something to do with it. College towns tend to be more liberal/gay-friendly. But it could also be completely unrelated.

  11. ‘Kelly/25/Vancouver, WA’

    I half expected seeing this header that I see would be a picture of my roommate, Kelly, who is also 25, and lives in Vancouver, WA, in our kitchen.

    Alternate timeline roommate???

  12. This was so interesting.I smiled a lot in recognition of what has been shared, and felt quite blessed to be part of this community being themselves as part of this project. This is one of the coolest things Autostraddle has done!!

    I loved the meal in progress shots, and how the kitchen makes people talk and listen to one another. Thank you everyone for sharing yourselves and where you feed and nourish yourselves.

  13. This is everything I thought it would be! Y’alls kitchens are amazing.
    Also, Autostraddlers have some seriously good hair.
    For the record, my cat Diana (named after the princess) is in my shot, standing on the washing machine and wondering why I’m posing for pictures instead of giving her treats.

  14. I was hovering my mouse (I still use a mouse for my computer) over some interesting ingredients and cooked items and I was hoping my mouse could have told me what the various interesting things were. For another day 🙂

  15. QUEER IRL this is my hearrrrt. i love every single picture and every single person so much. I want to hangout in all ur kitchens and drink tea and hear about your day and be your friend. I love this peek into your lives so much and my heart especially swelled up for all your queer families. It is so great to see some of the beauty in your lives.

  16. I loved this so much. Everything about it is perfect, and real.

    What a nice anecdote to the depressing state of American politics. Despite it all, real life goes on. Pancakes still taste great. Coffee is just as amazing as ever. Queer chicks are happy and cozy at home. So many feels….

    I love to cook and feel most complete behind the stove. So it was to see so many passionate cooks in the mix. And to see their kitchens as a reflection of who they are.

    I also have to say- wow, so many gorgeous women!

    What’s next for IRL?

  17. TWO MALAYSIANS :O

    And aww, my kitchen looks really boring compared to you lot. No fridge magnets, for one – I should really get some magnetic poetry. And I don’t get visitors often enough to do a group cook – I think that’s only happened once?? Which is to say, if you are in Melbourne, please hit me up because I would love to have you visit and we can make something together.

    I missed out on the submissions party, but wanna share, so here you go:

    It’s not actually bendy, I just suck at panorama pictures. And yes, those are potatoes in the butter cookie tin.

  18. amazing. beautiful, fascinating, perfect. this brings so much joy

    i’m also in love with all of those cats and dogs. wish i weren’t too shy n closeted to also send something in, but i’m so looking forward to the rest of this series

  19. You all look amazing, thank you for sharing! All these wonderful warm pictures left me feeling very warm and happy. And, seriously, your fashion game is A+ – loved to see all those wonderful shirts and flannels, dressing gowns and slippers, super cool boots and awesome hats and Beanies. There’s some real dedication right there – keep on rocking, keep on using melons for very good things and fondeling kale.

  20. Wooo it’s me!

    The sheer amount of cats in this gave me life. I literally went through this excitedly yelling CAT! every time a cat showed up. I especially loved the cat names Roofcat and Pesto. Those are amazing cat names.

    Some day, when I have my own cat, I want to name them VCR Player. or Episode Six. Or Croissant. I don’t know, I have a long list of absurd cat names saved up. I can’t wait.

  21. Can you fall in love with a woman based on their kitchen? And their adorable smile?
    If so I am respectfully in love with Alysia Angel and her amazing pink fridge.
    We could bake together and be best friends and it would be amazing!

    • Hey! 😀 I was surprised/pleased to see that there’s actually a few of us featured here?! Are you Jen with the cat poking around in the cupboards (that was one of my favorite pictures!)? Or Lauren or Faith with the gorgeous kitchen with an awesome purple wall? Or someone who didn’t post a kitchen pic?

  22. I was waiting for this for what seems like forever!!

    This made me super happy! Loved seeing everyone in their “natural habitat” 🙂 and I’m super proud to see my kitchen there!

    Thanks AS can’t wait for the next one!

  23. this is the cutest best thing! Everyone is so adorable in their amazing perfect kitchens! and all of you are having such great hair days! I am bummed I missed the submission deadline, but work got the best of me. I will try better next time!

  24. There is so much creativity here. I am in awe of everyone. Thank you and thanks Laneia for putting this together.

    Seeing how amazing some of these shots are I wish I put a bit more effort into mine, but then wrangling a dog and a baby is a feat in itself.

  25. Sophie from Ishikawa–this is Leah of Leah-and-Chelsea. WE MET IN ISHIKAWA! ON JET! NO JOKE! We even had a Statistically Important number of bisexuals back in the day. Sending love to the Rock River!

  26. I forget all the things I wanted to say about everyone’s pictures, all I remember is that you are all so freaking cute and your kitchens are so unique and fun! Thank you for sharing! It only took me 2 days to get through 🙂

  27. SO MANY FELLOW CANADIANS HELLO HELLO ~ i absolutely loved participating in this. look at all your gorgeous faces and your gorgeous kitchens. i feel closer to the universe today. i think i might cry.

  28. 1. I want to marry all of you.

    2. This should be a Taschen coffee table book already.

    3. I wish I had a time machine and could go back and give small-town baby dyke me a copy of this collection of images. It would have been so comforting. It still is; aside from direct action (which I know we are all participating in), the most radical act we can all engage in in the face of our current political reality is to live, work, love, and thrive in spite of those who hate us. These images are a rich and beautiful tableau of the act of resistance that is choosing to exist.

    As an aside: This is a powerful and important document, and a snapshot of a community and a moment in time that has historical value. As you continue this series, I hope you will consider ways in which in can be published or formally added to one of our LGBT archives to be a primary source for future generations.

    • yes yes yes. i vote for a coffee-table book. a more labor-intensive alternative: all of us submit a recipe for a thing we like to cook in our queer kitchens and somehow assemble a massive cookbook/kitchen gallery tome.

  29. 2 questions…. 1. Where did Casey get that double Venus sweatshirt, because I need it, and 2. How do I become Alysia’s best friend, because I HAVE TO COOK IN THAT KITCHEN!!!!!

  30. You guys I’m not gonna lie, looking at it here I completely hate my photo/kitchen/description… but the fact that I love all the other photos makes it totally worth submitting to the gallery.

  31. Finally got around to looking at all of these, and I am so glad this exists on the internet. This collection is fantastic, inspiring, and surprisingly cathartic. I’m really looking forward to the bedroom gallery!

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