Technology has been making life easier for home cooks for centuries; refrigerators allowed us to keep food cool without relying on blocks of ice, home kitchens have evolved and streamlined, making cooking easier and more of a pleasure. The internet is no different. Now home cooks can access millions of recipes, videos, and tutorials with a few clicks — and are provided with more visuals and interaction than any book. Here’s a peek at some of the best food apps out there, a collection of free and inexpensive resources to help you discover and organize recipes, learn new techniques, shop without making a list, or fix culinary disasters when they happen. Let’s cook!
Jamie’s Recipes 1 of 10It's the future of cookbooks: Jamie's Recipes is a free app for which you buy content packs, but first there are 10 free recipes and three videos to get you started. Additional themed content packs are available to purchase on-demand from within the app, each containing at least 10 recipes and some video.
Free (then pay for packs); compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.
Foodily 2 of 10Providing a daily feed of recipes from top chefs like Cat Cora and Lisa McRee, top websites like Whole Living and Fine Cooking, and thousands of top food blogs, Foodily provides fresh ideas when you need a food fix.
Free; compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
Martha Stewart Makes Cookies 3 of 10Tapping into decades of cookie-baking prowess, the Martha Stewart Makes Cookies app features more than 50 of Martha's well-loved recipes — ranging from classic shortbread to chocolate-chestnut meringues — presented on a "cookie runway" that lets users peruse them all. Not only that; Martha's new, all-encompassing cookie app includes video tutorials, built-in timers, shopping lists that can be e-mailed to your phone and a glossary of baking tools. It's recipes and resources in one.
$4.99; compatible with iPad.
Kitchen Disasters & Fixes 4 of 10Salty soup, burned cookies or runny mashed potatoes? When you can't call your mom, Kitchen Disasters & Fixes offers solutions to common cooking disasters. When it's too late, Rescue Recipes salvage everything from overcooked vegetables to stale bread — and Avoidance Tactics ensure you won't have the problem again.
$2.99; compatible with iPhone or iPad.
Urbanspoon 5 of 10When you want to get out of the kitchen, Urbanspoon helps you locate restaurants by neighborhood, cuisine, or price, with reviews from critics, bloggers, and fellow diners. The app covers all of Canada and the US, and large metro areas in the UK and Australia.
Free; compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List 6 of 10With over 5 million downloads, Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List was the winner for the second year in a row at the 2011 ASME Awards (National Magazine Awards for Digital Media). Search more than 30,000 recipes from Bon Appetit, Gourmet, Self, and renowned chefs and cookbooks. Save your favorite recipes, create shopping lists, and e-mail recipes to family and friends.
Free; compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
BigOven 7 of 10Giving you over 200,000 recipes at your fingertips, Big Oven is one of the most popular recipe apps out there. Save, store, and bring your favorite recipes with you wherever you go. And if you're not sure what to make, enter three ingredients from your fridge or pantry, and BigOven will give you some ideas.
Free; compatible with iPhone, iPad and Android devices.
Spinning Chef Meal Planner 8 of 10Streamline your daily dinner routine with the Spinning Chef Meal Planner — an app that allows you to create completely customizable weekly meal plans, complete with grocery lists to ensure you have all the ingredients needed for tasty, nutritious meals for the whole family.
$2.99; compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
Recipe Search 9 of 10Here's a new way to find recipes: based on ingredients you already have. This is the place to source and share — for those who love cooking and sharing your ideas! Over 70,000 recipes have already been uploaded by the Recipe Search community, and yours can join them.
Free; for Androids 1.6 and up.
In the Kitchen 10 of 10Your favorite Food Network chefs and their recipes, brought into your kitchen — or with you to the grocery store. In the Kitchen lets you cook along with Paula Deen, Bobby Flay, Guy Fieri and others, with handy kitchen tools like a recipe box, kitchen timer, measurement converter, and shopping list functionality.
$1.95; for Androids 1.6 and up.