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Recipe organiser / app

Hello,
I'm sure I'm not alone in this situation: my recipes are scattered all over the place. Some are emailed to me, some I jot down on random pieces of paper, some are saved on sites like chow and epicurious, others are earmarked in magazines, others are photos/screenshots in my ipad, others (few!) are in my head. I would like an easy way to compile them all, at the same time having them accessible from my ipad, iphone, etc.
Are you using any good recipe apps? Any other tips in order to keep them all organised, easily searchable, easily accessible?
Your feedback is welcome!

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  1. Parika - I love it - you have to buy it separately for each product, computer, iPad, iphone, etc... but totally worth it!

    7 Replies
      1. re: harryharry

        Do you mean paprika? I couldn't find parika.

        1. re: sherrib

          yes - my fingers are slower than my brain today

            1. re: harryharry

              Poo. Useless. (ha)

              Anyone remember the beta vs. VHS battles?

              1. re: harryharry

                Looks like as of December 1, 2013, Paprika is available for Android.

          1. For a free app, check out www.pepperplate.com. You can use it on computer, phone, tablet, etc.

            Here's a previous thread about (which also compares it with Paprika): http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/805559

            5 Replies
            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

              Caitlin thank you for the app and the link to the discussion, really helpful

                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                  Another vote for Pepperplate. It syncs across devices (PC, iPone, iPad, etc).

                  1. re: truman

                    Wow! Fabulous feature. Wish I weren't already thoroughly invested in the one I have...

                2. I've used MacGourmet for years. It's extremely useful and affordable. A single payment will get you the code to install it to various devices. I had it originally on my laptop. I continue to input stuff to that computer but I also now have everything accessible on my laptop, the iPad that I cook from (with the addition of the excellent Belkin cabinet mount that places it at eye level when I cook) and on the iPhone that I am carrying when I do my shopping from the list constructed from MG. I synch them all via iTunes to keep everything current.

                  I did the leg (finger?) work of inputting all my recipes completely but you can use it to just catalog URLs and cookbook and page references too. For me, I want the recipe because things won't stay online forever but I copy in the URLs as well so I can reference the original when I start making my own additions and changes.

                  They have a free 30-day demo so you can try it out.

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: rainey

                    It's really easy to import recipes from websites into the app too. I love the separate Notes sections. I keep info there on converting recipes, making adjustments and info on my using my mixer.

                    1. re: rasputina

                      Absolutely!

                      I make a new note every time I run across some arcane bit of info that I'd *never* find if I were looking for it. I have equivalent pan sizes, half a dozen variations on tempering chocolate, the temperatures of things that are "done", etc.

                      I also use Notes to keep the URLs of holiday tips for things like decor and templates for tabletop decorations.

                      I couldn't even think of all that I have in that DB if I spent a week on it! It's become an invaluable resource. ...and an instant archive of what I've learned about cooking in 40+ years for all of my kids to have. No more deciding who gets mom's dogeared recipe file!

                      One other feature I really like is the Russian Roulette thing that will suggest 5 random recipes 'cause there are things I just forget to try again. I have suggested that they let you filter that so you get dessert recipes when you want dessert and mail dishes when you're looking for dinner ideas. I wish they'd do that.

                      1. re: rainey

                        Oh I haven't even noticed the roulette, I'll have to check that out.

                        Did you get the email about the new version coming out?

                    2. re: rainey

                      I agree on MacGourmet! It has served me well since the very first version was released many years ago, and I'm up to over 3000 recipes stored there.

                      It's convenient to sync my recipes to an iPad, especially with a good kitchen-friendly iPad stand. The current version only syncs one way (Mac to iPad), but a few months ago they were beta testing a two-way sync (where you can make changes or add notes on the iPad and sync this back to your Mac). I imagine that will be part of the next release.

                      One other thing that makes MacGourmet stand out is the cookbook feature (either a plugin for the regular MacGourmet or included with MacGourmet Deluxe). I've used this to organize and print out a cookbook of my best recipes for friends and relatives. A lot of other recipe software seems to match the basic functionality of MacGourmet, but almost none of those allow you to create your own cookbook (including front cover, preface, index, chapter contents, notes, index, etc.).

                      1. re: DonPablo

                        I bought that plug-in and I never figured out how to use it.

                        Oh well, as I remember it wasn't expensive...

                        1. re: DonPablo

                          According to Mariner, who bought macgourmet from Advenio they are going to cloud syncing so everything automatically updates across apps.

                          I like the ability to scale recipes. Looking at Paprika it's like macgourmet basic.

                          1. re: rasputina

                            Scaling is nice - Pepperplate does it.

                        2. re: rainey

                          I'll add another vote for MacGourmet. A feature I love about it that hasn't been mentioned yet is the nutrition plugin (in the deluxe edition). It will perform a nutrition analysis of any recipe entered based on the USDA ingredient nutrition database.

                          1. re: rainey

                            I realize this is an old thread, but it was the most recent I could find.

                            I am considering switching from Yummy Soup to MacGourmet Deluxe. My questions are:

                            1) Will MacGourmet import all of my Yummy Soup recipes? (I would not want to start over).

                            2) Can I install MacGourmet on all of my Macs (we have five), or do I have to purchase a separate installation for each one?

                            3) Are multiple phones and iPads included as well?

                            It is true that our tiny home office looks like Command Central, but it would be nice to know what the limitations MacGourmet places on their license. (Yummy Soup is [or was] an unlimited, "trust me" type of license).

                            1. re: sarahvw1

                              I don't have the answer to all of your questions, as I'm the only person using OSX in my house. But make sure all of your devices are capable of running the OS required. For macgourmet desktop that is OS 10.7 and for the mobile app that is IOS 6 ( the new mobile app will not run on the original iPad)

                              1 does yummy soup use yum xml files? If so then according to Mariner you can import the database.

                              2 I don't know, I'd ask Mariner about that.

                              3 You need to buy the iTunes app but like all other non subscription iTunes apps it can be installed on multiple devices. You will have to sync each one individually though.

                              About a year ago macgourmet got sold by Advenio to Mariner. Since then, Mariner came out with a new version of the desktop app ( macgourmet4) and a new iPad/iPhone app ( now called gourmet). The new iPad/iPhone app requires IOS6 which means it doesn't work on the original iPad. The original Advenio macgourmet mobile app isn't compatible with with Mariner's macgourmet 4, it works with Advenio's previous Macgourmet 3 desktop version.

                          2. macgourmet, it's the perfect app for your desktop, ipad and iPhone. You just sync your devices with your desktop version. Works great, and it's so nice to have my recipes with me when I'm shopping for on the fly double checking of ingredients.

                            11 Replies
                            1. re: rasputina

                              rasputina: when you say desktop, do you mean PC windows desktop? I use a mac at home and a PC at work. I need something that works with both. Pepperplate does, as long as you're using up to date browsers (which I am not always able to do in both home and work environments), so I'm starting to lose faith in pepperplate, unfortunately.

                              ~TDQ

                              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                AFAIK macgourmet isn't compatible with windows. But I only use mac myself so I haven't really checked.

                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                  No, MacGourmet doesn't have a Windows version (or Android, for that matter), and I don't think they plan to. Do you have an iPad? If so, would their iPad version be good enough for anything you would need to do with your recipes at work?

                                  1. re: DonPablo

                                    The ipad in our household is not mine. :)

                                    But, would it work on an iphone?

                                    I don't have an iphone (I'm sorry to be exposing myself as such a luddite here), but I've been thinking about getting one.

                                    ~TDQ

                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                      Yes, their iOS app (Gourmet) is supposed to work on both iPad and iPhone. I haven't used it on the iPhone, though -- just the Mac and iPad. But whenever I find the time, I'm going to see how well it works on the iPhone, which would be very useful in the grocery store.

                                  2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                    TDQ, have you tried Evernote? You can save recipes from anywhere and access them on any platform. It has a great web clipper that allows you to save a recipe from any site with one click. It has excellent tagging, organizing and search capabilities. You can even take pictures of recipes that are not online and store them in evernote, and you can search text in the photos. The only downside is that it doesn't have the pretty, uniform formatting of pepperplate.

                                    1. re: Westminstress

                                      Yes! I don't use it much, but funnily enough, I was just musing in another thread this morning if I should consider switching to evernote or, at least, using evernote as my backup. They seem to have a much smarter business model and I have faith they will be around awhile.

                                      I love some of the features of pepperplate, but maybe I should move away from it as my "primary" recipe database. I obviously need to update my browsers, but I think I need a different kind of solution going forward.

                                      ~TDQ

                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                        The main downside of Evernote (and any similar note app) is organization. I already have 40-50 notes stored in Evernote for home or work, and even with those it can sometimes be awkward finding the note I need. I have over 3000 recipes in MacGourmet, and shudder at the thought of having 3000+ notes in Evernote (both in the speed of syncing the database and in the ease of finding the recipe I want). From my perspective, this is a big advantage for the dedicated recipe apps (MG, Pepperplate, Paprika, or the many others out there).

                                        1. re: DonPablo

                                          Interesting! I haven't really played around with evernote much, but if you have a "recipe" folder in evernote and search it for quinoa, or by tags (say, "salad" or "side dishes" or "South American"), how can that take any longer than searching pepperplate (or whatever) on "quinoa" or whatever tag you have?

                                          Maybe I need to play with evernote more so I can understand what you mean.

                                          ~TDQ

                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                            I guess I've just never been one of those people who stores everything in one place and then searches to find the right file -- if you do that, and restrict an Evernote search to the Recipes notebook, and search by either keyword or tag, that might work well for you (assuming that their search is reasonably fast when searching through hundreds or thousands of recipes/notes). I guess that's just not the way I work.

                                            I wonder if using Evernote for recipes would risk running up against the monthly usage limits of their free accounts. Every time a new note/recipe is added, or an existing one is edited, it has to be synced to their servers, which counts against the monthly total. For a short text recipe, this wouldn't use many resources each time you edit a recipe -- but a full copy of a recipe with pictures and everything might.

                                            I also wonder about offline usage when there is no network connection. Evernote advertises their premium service ($5/month) as allowing access to your notes even when there is no network connection. Does this mean that you wouldn't be able to view your recipes offline unless you ponied up for premium?

                                          2. re: DonPablo

                                            Yes I have over 700 recipes on my macgourmet I wouldn't even want to think about trying to navigate that in evernote.

                                  3. I use mealboard - it's an iPhone and ipad app. I'm not sure if there is an android version. It's similar to pepper plate.

                                    I would spend some time investigating the features of all the suggestions because once you commit to an app and spend the time importing recipes it's a pain to change your mind at a later stage.

                                    1. I have used Cook's Palate software to make cookbooks. Not bad. They will Publish cook books for you but I did it myself for a girl scout troop project.

                                      1. I use a new iPhone/iPad app called RecipeTin.

                                        I've been looking for years for an app that does exactly what you describe. Like you I have recipes in text files, as Word Docs, photos I took of magazines or books, some PDFs, same as you.

                                        This app covers all these. It also has a browser built in that will convert any web page to a PDF and import it into the app. So you aren't "locked into" certain websites that the app supports, unlike Paprika say (tried that one too). It works brilliantly.

                                        It's not fancy, it's very straightforward and easy to use. I think that's the whole idea behind it and it does it well.