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Sep 24, 2006 08:12 PM

Nutritional Information for Recipes

Chow looks great but... it would be more useful to many of us if recipes could have nutritional information.

Basic facts such as approx. calorie count, fat, etc. I know it's close to impossible to have a proper breakdown given the various ingredients one could use but perhaps some sort of subjective indicator would work (low, moderate, high) for fat and basic ranges for calories (+/- 100 calories).

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  1. I'm diabetic so nutritional information is necessary for everything I cook, as it relates to carb, sugar, fat, sat fat and chol.

    I use a software called cook'n for all my recipes.

    Type it in, determine the number of servings...out pops recipe with nutritional info. If it's not good for my parameters, I tweek the recipe until it's right for me.

    Would this help you?

    1. I definitely would like to see nutritional information included in the recipes. Yes, I can calculate it myself, however, it would certainly help me when browsing the site.

      1. Nutritional information would be really helpful because I use Weight Watchers to manage my weight. Yes the recipe builder on the WW web site is what I use when a recipe does not have nutritional info available but I would find CHOW much more user friendly if the info were already there - like Cooking Light provides the info - I love that. I think that people who use CHOW are into food and likely into their own health and this seems like a natural to provide nutritional info. I'm surprised it's not already being done.

        1. It is unrealistic to expect home cooks to supply nutritional breakdowns for their own recipes, especially those which do not have extremely explicit measurements. Those who require such data should be responsible for figuring it out for themselves, especially since there are sites and software enabling them to do so.

          1 Reply
          1. re: greygarious

            I think you have the right idea. I also think that the site really doesn't want or need the added liability of providing this sort of data to people whose medical or dietary issues or restrictions are not known.

          2. I think this is a good idea, too. automatically calculates it all when you enter in a recipe. I wonder if Chow can do that.

            15 Replies
            1. re: chowser

              I wish I had seen this thread earlier. I began a thread on this same topic just a day or two ago. I, too, am fed up with magazines and cookbooks that do not provide nutritional information. After losing 55 pounds, it really matters to me what I put in my mouth, and what it will do to my body. I think it's irresponsible of a site not to give all data they can provide.

              1. re: elainefay1

                You have to remember that Chowhound is a "user content" generated site. The recipes are posted by those who love to cook. The site doesn't produce what you see, we do (you and I and everyone else). So when you talk about a "site" being irresponsible for not giving all the data "they" can provide you are off base with regard to Chowhound. Each person who shares a recipe here can, if they so wish, provide such information. But it is up to each one of them to do this, or not.

                1. re: Servorg

                  Not the CHOW side of things, which seems to be what elainefay1 is talking about. I think it's reasonable to expect recipes developed by CHOW staffers to list nutritional information.

                  1. re: Chris VR

                    There seems to be some confusion about Chow vs Chowhound, especially when it comes to new users, so I just wanted to make clear that the recipes found on Chowhound aren't generated by some paid staff.

                    1. re: Servorg

                      Sure, but this thread is about Chow recipes.

                      1. re: Chris VR

                        Are you certain that elainefay1 knows the distinction between the two and is talking only about Chow? From the other thread and her reply to ipsedixit's post (see that post and the reply here: ) I'm not at all sure that is the case.

                        1. re: Servorg

                          Based on what I've read, I'm fairly sure she means CHOW recipes and not Home Cooking recipes. She adressed the other query "Dear CHOW" and if you're on and see a tab called recipes, you come to which includes the text "Recipes from the CHOW test kitchen are carefully tested and crafted to be straightforward yet memorable. " She also seems to have never posted on the Home Cooking board, and if you're looking for recipes on this site, you have to look a bit harder to find those recipes.

                          I suspect it's you and ipsedixit who are misunderstanding what she's talking about, but I've been wrong before.

                          1. re: Chris VR

                            However, she did end up on Chowhound's Site Talk board (and as we've seen time and again it's easy to "Google in" to the middle of any thread here on Chowhound - Home Cooking or otherwise).

                            1. re: Servorg

                              All the pages on (and have a link to the Site Talk board in the footer, so it's not hard to find your way here, whereas you need to do a bit of digging to find the Home Cooking board if Google didn't lead you here.

                              Again, she said she was "fed up with magazines and cookbooks that do not provide nutritional information" and since CHOW is much closer to that description than the discussion forums are, I think she must mean the CHOW recipes.

                              1. re: Chris VR

                                Perhaps you're right. We will have to see if she returns to set the record straight. But since these types of threads are for many others who may come here in the future, setting the record straight for the future is not a bad idea.

                                Clearing up this area for new drops ins about the fact that there is a big difference between Chow and Chowhound can only be a positive. So ipse's and my replies, even if they don't fit the exact circumstances of elainefay1's complaint are completely within the both the spirit and intent of Chowhound.

                                1. re: Servorg

                                  I hope that you realize I was not complaining. I was merely asking whether nutritional information was available. I assumed the recipes were created by CHOW. I see now that recipes are shared by readers, and to ask for such information to be provided in that case is out of line. It seems that some have taken offense, which was not my intent at all.

                                  I do find it interesting, however, that this query has created such active dialogue. It seems I'm not alone in wishful thinking. Any help the CHOW site could provide would be sincerely appreciated.

                                  1. re: elainefay1

                                    elainefay, posters exchange recipes all the time in discussion threads such as this one, but over on Chowhound's Home Cooking board. Users can also enter recipes in the recipe database on And the recipes that are promoted on the home page of are created by people who work for Chow, or are from cookbooks and have been put on the site by the editorial staff with permission. If you search for recipes i Chow's recipe database, the ones with a little red CHOW logo are things from the Chow editorial side, not from members. So they do create recipes, but only some of the recipes on the two sites are created by Chow.

                                    1. re: elainefay1

                                      Elaine, please have no worries about complaining around here. It's what a lot of us do best. And when you wrote "I think it's irresponsible of a site not to give all data they can provide." I saw that in the best tradition of Chowhound complaining. ;-D>

                                      1. re: Servorg

                                        Thank you for clearing this up. I was indeed, referring to the recipes sent to me on my daily email. Let me be sure this is right. The daily email are recipes created by or approved by CHOW? These are ones I would assume had nutritional information.

                                        Thanks. And by the way, I've just come in from my garden and see that it's time to harvest our Japanese popcorn (yes, we grow popcorn in Walnut Creek), I'm taking the last of my roasted tomatoes out of my oven, and tomorrow's job is to get out the shell beans so we can get in our winter garden - broccoli, spinach, heirloom lettuce and golden beets. I love the fact that we can garden year round.

                                        1. re: elainefay1

                                          What kind of popcorn is Japanese popcorn? I have never heard of it...