- Unique way to discover new recipes
- Includes recipe filters
- Lots of ads
- Recipes load slowly
- No shopping list
AllRecipes.com puts a fun spin on the traditional iPhone recipe app -- and I mean that literally. Instead of searching by keyword or category, the AllRecipes app (Free) uses a virtual spinner to help you find new recipes. AllRecipes is a neat idea that is well executed, but it lacks some features you may want in a recipe app.
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Shake your iPhone for recipe ideas
When you first launch the AllRecipes.com Dinner Spinner app, you’ll see three rows. The top row breaks down various dish types like appetizer, main course, desserts, etc. Underneath, the second row includes ingredients, and you’ll see everything from chocolate to beef here. Finally, the third row includes several options for how long the recipe takes to prepare. If you just need an idea for dinner, shake your iPhone and the spinner will get to work. The All Recipes app will select one item from each row; click "view matches" to see your results.
You can also manually set these items if you need a chicken recipe that is ready in less than 20 minutes, for example. Of course, the All Recipes app also includes a regular keyword search. With thousands of recipes, a keyword search might be overwhelming, but the app has helpful filters to help you narrow down your results, including vegetarian, vegan, dairy-free, low-sodium, and low-carb. As a result, the All Recipes app is a good choice for anyone with special diets, since some recipe apps don’t make it easy to pinpoint specific recipes like this.
Recipes are slow to load
The recipes are all submitted by users, and some have hundreds of individual ratings and reviews. You can read a few of those reviews at the bottom of the page. The recipes also include ingredients and directions (on one page!), in addition to nutrition facts.
The recipes are nicely formatted, but they take forever to load over a strong WiFi connection. Okay, forever may be a bit of an exaggeration, but there is a pause of at least five seconds while the recipe loads -- and you get to look at an ad in the meantime. Five seconds isn’t the end of the world, but it adds up if you’ll be viewing a lot of recipes. Ads are also sprinkled throughout the search results, so they can be a bit overpowering at times.
Unlike some recipe apps, the AllRecipes.com Dinner Spinner doesn’t have many sharing options. You can email a recipe, but there’s no Facebook or Twitter integration -- a feature you can find in Martha’s Everyday Food app. The app also lacks a shopping list, a pretty common feature. The AllRecipes.com website includes 44,000 recipes, but only a few thousand are included in the free app. If you are willing to spend a few bucks, AllRecipes.com Pro ($2.99) includes all the recipes on the website and offers shopping lists.
The Bottom Line
All Recipes is a solid app that makes it just a little more fun to come up with something for dinner. The spinner is neat and sets AllRecipes.com apart from other cooking apps. The recipes load slowly, and the free version lacks some nice-to-have features, but it’s still worth a download if you need some new recipe ideas. Overall rating: 4 stars out of 5.
What You’ll Need