In 1997, AllRecipes.com was launched by a group of web developers and University of Washington anthropology grad students. It has since become one of the largest digital food brands. AllRecipes.com has more than a million recipes, 18 sub-sites, 2 mobile apps, 14 eBooks, and serves cooks in 23 countries and 12 languages.
Community members are able to share recipes, photos, reviews, blogs, and recipe boxes. AllRecipes.com has an average of 30 million global unique visitors each month.
AllRecipes.com's search function allows users to look for recipes based on keywords or phrases, included ingredients, excluded ingredients, meal, dish type, and time needed to make the recipe. Each recipe category is further divided into subcategories called collections to help narrow down results.
When users click on Recipes in the top navigation, they are taken to a page with the following categories: Appetizer, Breakfast & Brunch, Chicken, Desserts, Healthy, Main Dish, Slow Cooker, Trusted Brands, Vegetarian, and a seasonal category. When one of the categories is selected, the user is sent to another page that has several recipe collections, each of which contains thousands of different recipes.
When viewing recipes, users are able to click on a specific item in the ingredients list to add it to their shopping list. This feature ensures that users don't forget any ingredients when shopping. The recipe pages also include a Kitchen View, which changes the layout of the page so the ingredients and directions are side-by-side, so users don't have to scroll back and forth while cooking and risk getting food on their screens or keyboards. Allrecipes.com is the only site we reviewed that offers this feature.
AllRecipes.com offers a standard membership and a Pro membership. The standard membership is free and lets users save recipes, create shopping lists and receive three different newsletters. The Pro members have the ability to change recipes to fit their needs, comment on others' recipes, and search for recipes based on nutrition - but the Pro account isn't free.
In the website footer, there is a link to Customer Service. This page includes questions about membership information, the menu planner tool, The Buzz, technical support, cooking techniques, and more. There is also a section with the top FAQs, which range from login information to cooking questions.
AllRecipes.com does not include levels of difficulty for its recipes. Users have to read through the recipes in order to determine if the difficulty level is within their capabilities.
The site also doesn't have nutritional information readily available for free members. Pro members, however, are able to search for recipes based on nutrition. Allrecipes.com is the only recipe site we reviewed that charges for access to, or sorting by, nutritional information.
AllRecipes.com does have ads on their site. Many of the ads featured in the sidebar don't relate to the content on the site, so they can be distracting while browsing the site.
AllRecipes.com is a useful tool for serious cooks who want to be able to alter and save existing recipes to fit their needs, as well as contribute to others' recipes. It's also convenient for those who are on the go: the menu planner and shopping lists are easy-to-use timesavers. However, Allrecipes.com may not be a good fit for users who are on a budget or concerned with nutrition information.
Yummly was founded in 2010 by CEO, Dave Feller, because he wanted to end the frustration of not being able to filter recipes to exclude an item, specifically mustard. Feller joined forces with other “foodies” to help users find a recipe, shop for food, and share recipes with the community. With 15 million monthly visitors, Yummly is one of the largest food and recipes sites on the web.
Betty Crocker was born out of a need to answer consumer questions in 1921. The name was chosen to sound friendly and pay homage to a retired director, William G. Crocker. The General Mills Company, who at the time was Gold Medal flour, had received so many questions about baking that they created Betty to give the answers a personalized touch. The Betty Crocker Kitchens and recipes were created out of a desire to be committed to consumer service and product quality. After decades of publishing cookbooks, Betty moved to the internet at BettCrocker.com.
Food Network was launched in 1993 and includes a lifestyle television network, website, and magazine that connect fans to recipes, cooking shows, advice from celebrity chefs and restaurant recommendations.
The Food Network site averages more than 9.9 million unique web users monthly and the magazine is distributed to more than 100 million US households. Headquartered in New York, Food Network is aired in more than 150 countries.
CookingLight.com came from Cooking Light the magazine which was found in 1987. CookingLight.com is to be a hub of information for readers and first times viewer alike. The site is designed to include articles and videos which include nutrition tips, quick and healthy recipes, fitness information, and expert resources to help users make smart choices about food, nutrition, and their lifestyle. CookingLight.com houses some of the most healthful, dietitian-approved recipes of any website online. As a part of a sisterhood of sites, they partner with MyRecipes.com and others.
The EatingWell Media Group is a communications company that produces an award-winning national consumer magazine, food- and nutrition-related books, a website, and email newsletters. The original EatingWell Magazine was launched in 1990. The corresponding website features recipes, health and nutrition information and tools for maintaining a healthy lifestyle and meeting personal health goals.
Epicurious is operated and was founded by Condé Nast Digital. Condé Nast Digital is a creator and developer of upmarket lifestyle brands on the web. They are based out of New York and owned Advance Publications, Inc. They are partnered with some of the world's most prestigious magazines and Epicurious has sister sites in the travel and fashion industry, Concierge.com and Style.com.