real food, made by real people

Laena started Anarchy in a Jar in the wee hours of the morning, making jam in restaurant kitchens borrowed through the kindness and generosity of her community. Anarchy in a Jar is not just a commodity, it's a craft made by people with passion. 

“Extraordinary preserves.”
— Julia Moskin, New York Times

The Idea

Founder and CEO Laena McCarthy grew up making preserves with her family in New York’s Hudson Valley,

An international career in science support and academia ignited her interest in food, and she learned simple recipes from people she met around the world for preserved foods that were both tasty and healing. Laena landed back in NYC and decided to make her passion for preservation and plants into a business.

Laena launched Anarchy in a Jar in 2009, embracing a revived demand for fresh, local, creative food. With help from her team of tasters, fellow food makers and fans, she grew the business into a plant-based condiment powerhouse, where she stirs her eclectic experience and passion for plants into elixirs of the jar.

The revolution starts in you.

Style & Quality

Our mantra: plant-based, unique flavors with a genuine dedication to craft, flavor and authenticity, using small-batch techniques and ethical sourcing of ingredients. 

You can find the jam and mustard at many grocery stores and cheese shops throughout the New York tri-state, New England, DC, the Midwest, in select stores nationwide, and online.

You can find the skincare online and at our classes and workshops, or at our offices by appointment

Anarchy in a Jar has been featured in The New York TimesThe New York Times T Style Magazine, The Martha Stewart Show, Saveur, Food & Wine, Bon AppetitNew York MagazineTasting Table, Serious Eats, and Time Out New York.

See our Press page for more info.

100% Handcrafted

All our products are crafted by hand using expertly sourced ingredients, thoroughly researched for safety. They are cruelty-free, sls-free, paraben-free, and free of chemical additives and preservatives.

Laena says,

ANARCHY IN A JAR is my vision for herb-based food and skincare products that reflect a desire to reconnect with simple, pure, chemical-free ingredients. I only use the highest quality ingredients in every product. Each one of my products reflect my love for food, beauty, and design, encompassed in a life-long obsession with the healing power of herbs and plants. I truly believe that it matters what we put on the inside and outside of our bodies.

All our products are cooked by hand and all natural, made primarily with plants from local and small farms in Brooklyn and the Hudson Valley.

That's it, no junk. Our methods combine old world techniques with modern finesse, bringing innovation to the tradition of preservation and herbalism.

Get your plants on.