Katie Ruff is no stranger to home cooking, but she is finding that others are. From her deli and market By the Spoonful in downtown McGregor, she sees an increasing disconnect with the kitchen — and yet, an increased appreciation of it.

“Our food is made like Grandma would have made it,” says Ruff. “Who doesn’t like that?”

By the Spoonful offers made-to-order deli sandwiches featuring meats from Edgewood Locker in Edgewood, along with take-and-bake meals made from scratch on-site.

She calls her meals “stick to the ribs” food popular in northern Iowa, with an eye on fresh, healthy ingredients. She provides gluten and dairy free options with advance notice.

There is also a full service espresso bar and retail store filled with local and regional wines, beer, mustards, pastas, salsa, BBQ sauces and all sorts of...