Guest Blogger: Kristen Markel
I have been watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix obsessively and now I have this unrelenting need to get organized and downsize. As I was purging closets and deciding what “sparks joy” as Kondo advises one to do, I started thinking about the kitchen. How to organize recipes specifically came to mind.
I tried the Paprika Recipe Manager, Pepperplate, Pocket, and Pinterest. Which one is right for you?.
Why Recipe Management?
Marie Kondo aside, organizing your recipes will help streamline your meal planning; saving you time.
“Organizing your recipes will help streamline your meal planning; saving you time”
Recipe organization will show you recipes you haven’t seen in years. It may even get you out of a cooking rut. I found recipes that I used to make all the time that quickly went back into rotation. Recipe management for the win!
If you aren’t familiar with Pocket, it’s a free app that helps you store any article or webpage. You can then refer back to it at any time, even if you are offline.
How does this work for recipe management? Well, you find a recipe on any website and save it to pocket. Whenever you need it, you go to getpocket.com or the pocket app and it’s there. It’s as simple as that. There is an unlimited amount of space to store things in and did I mention it’s free?
The downside to using pocket is that it doesn’t have a strong search. You can only find recipes by tag, URL, or title. If you know exactly what recipe you are looking for or where you found it, you are in business. But if you are anything like me and you want to find a recipe that has carrots in it because of all of a sudden your five-year-old likes carrots, you may be out of luck.
Pepperplate is a free recipe management app meant to rival Paprika. However, I cannot recommend it. It hasn’t been updated since 2015 and it is no longer functioning well.
The importing feature only works on a very limited number of websites and even then it is spotty at best. That leaves the user to have to manually enter the recipes. This is extremely time-consuming. It’s best to skip this app.
Managing recipes on Pinterest is a different story. Once you have saved the recipes to a board, it can sometimes be difficult to find.
Something to consider is that Pinterest only works online. Also, you are relying on the link to the pin to still be active when you click it. Considering that the life of a Pinterest pin is many years, sometimes you may try to go to a recipe only to find the link to be broken. This can be frustrating.
Paprika is a recipe manager that has been around for many years. It has an importing feature that really shines on a laptop and makes getting started a breeze. You simply use the browser within Paprika to visit a recipe page and click a button to import. To add it to the app on your iPhone, you click on the share button and then select the Paprika app. It’s that easy.
Since the recipe is imported to Paprika and they are storing it, you can view any of your recipes offline. You can also easily search by recipe name, ingredient or URL. The ingredient search is key here because you may not know what the name of a recipe is or where it came from but you will likely know at least one ingredient.
The best tool I have found on Paprika, besides the simple Recipe Importer, is the Shopping List. With one click you can add the ingredients from a recipe to a master list. You are able to quickly scan them before adding and unselect those that you already have in your pantry. This is a real time saver.
Here’s the thing with Paprika, in terms of apps, it’s expensive. The iPhone and Ipad apps are $4.99 and the Windows/Mac app is $29.99. So, even though the apps sync between your devices, you need to purchase each one separately. You can get away with just having it on your iPhone if you wish to start out that way. It just will take you a little longer to import. You get what you pay for here.
Recipe Manager Review
After using these various recipe management methods, I really got a sense of the value of a true recipe manager. Your recipes are stored and ready to go when you are and the extra features are really useful. If you are looking to really organize your recipes for the long haul, Paprika is worth every penny. It truly is a robust and easy to use recipe manager.
Kristen Markel is a wife and mother of two boys. She helps busy people learn and grow in the kitchen so that they can feed their families delicious and (mostly) healthy meals. When she’s not cooking or writing, you can find her hiking, skiing, or out on the water. Her blog, The Kitchen Chalkboard is full of helpful information to save you time and money.