When you want to find a recipe to cook something, don’t just Google it. These dedicated recipe search engines will find you much better recipes, and allow you to filter them by dietary preferences, cooking methods, time, and budget.
Web search engines like Google or DuckDuckGo tend to find recipes based on popularity and your previous search patterns. But you won’t quickly find a keto-friendly recipe, or figure out if the cooking process can be finished in 15 minutes. That’s where you need specialized recipe search engines, which still get their recipes from reputed food websites.
1. Stovetop (Web): Powerful Recipe Search With Lots of Filters
Stovetop is an incredible directory to quickly find and filter recipes from top food websites. It has over 44,000 recipes from reputed cooking sites such as Serious Eats, New York Times Cooking, Bon Appetit, Woks of Life, Hot Thai Kitchen, Maangchi, and Dassana’s Veg Recipes.
When you search for any item, Stovestop will instantly filter its directory of recipes to show those in which the name appears in the title. Since all the links are already indexed, it’s much faster than any other search engine. At a glance, you’ll see the recipe name, the source and author, the amount of time it takes to prepare the dish, and reviews and ratings.
Stovetop also lets you filter search results with different parameters. You can include or exclude certain items (like in case of allergies) or if you’re trying to cook based on ingredients. You can set a minimum or maximum rating, or review score. You can choose the time limit (under 30, 30-60, 60-120, or over 120 minutes), and you can choose the sources for the recipes.
2. Typesense Recipe Search (Web): Super-Fast Recipe Search of Top Cooking Sites
Typesense is a new and fast open-source search engine. To prove its abilities, it created a demonstration through a recipe search mini-site, which gathers data from the best cooking sites on the internet like Food.com, Food Network, Epicurious, AllRecipes, and more.
As a demonstration, it is quite impressive. Typesense’s Recipe Search is blazing fast, finding the keywords in the headline or name of the recipe. Feel free to add multiple keywords into the search box to narrow down your search. You can also filter the results by ingredients, and also see a tag of how many results it’s featured in.
Apart from the quick search, Typesense also saves you from going to the recipe site and reading through the writer’s or blogger’s long preface. In any search result, click “Read Cooking Directions” to read Typesense’s summary of the recipe, which includes only the ingredients (with measurements) and step-by-step cooking directions. With the growing number of websites that write long personal experiences before giving you the recipe, this is a welcome, reader-friendly feature.
3. Dish Dragon (Web): AI Tells Which Ingredients Pair Well With Something
Wondering what you can do with some feta cheese? Dish Dragon uses the power of artificial intelligence (or more precisely, machine learning) to figure out which ingredients go well together. The database has analyzed over 150,000 popular recipes on the internet, learning which ingredients are commonly matched together and rated highly.
Continuing with the feta cheese example, Dish Dragon will tell you what the average rating of recipes with feta cheese is, and which combinations rate it higher (for example, feta cheese with sumac) or lower (for example, feta cheese with red pepper) . The app can show you these combinations and connections in a “visual explorer”, which is a lovely interactive map that looks like a word cloud. Click another ingredient on the map to find recipes with the combination of the two, and click more for further combinations.
If you don’t want to use the visual explorer, you can scroll through the initial results to find stand-out ingredient combinations, as well as select recipes with that ingredient as a key element. The recipes appear as cards with a picture, review rating, Dish Dragon rating, and the source cooking site.
4. Cookin ‘With Google (Web): Better Google Search for Recipes
Everyone’s instinctive reaction when looking for a recipe is to Google it. But while Google has the widest index of cooking sites, it’s not a specialist recipe search engine. Cookin ‘With Google is a smart attempt at leveraging the power of Google to enhance recipe search.
Research Buzz built a Custom Search Engine on Google that adds two major features: search by ingredient, and filter by diet type. You can also search for recipes normally, but the cool part is the ability to write three or four ingredients and get a result about recipes you can make with them. Then, you can filter the recipes by dietary or cooking preferences, such as Weight Watchers, Vegan / Vegetarian, Diabetic, Atkins, Seafood, and Crockpot.
The Cookin ‘With Google live demo has a strange URL, so you’ll probably want to bookmark it if you plan to use it. In case the URL doesn’t work someday, refer to the Research Buzz blog post for an updated link. Do read the post before you use it for additional tips, like searching in singular and then in plural to get different results, and including cooking terms.
5. Reddit Recipes (Web): Search Popular Recipe-Sharing Subreddits
While Reddit isn’t a search engine, it hosts several communities of cooks who share their favorite recipes. Use our tips to search Reddit effectively and you’ll be able to find a treasure trove of recipes that you won’t get through Google or the other search engines in this article.
Mainly, we recommend searching within three popular subreddits: r / Recipes, r / EasyRecipes, and r / GIFRecipes. Of these, r / Recipes is the largest and most active community, with over three million members and multiple updates daily. r / EasyRecipes caters to beginner cooks if you’re trying to find something easy to make. And r / GIFRecipes is one of the best visual recipe sites to learn to cook through GIFs demonstrating the process.
As you search on these sites, you’ll also find several other niche subreddits with their own specializations, like Keto recipes (or other dietary needs) and those based on time or budget to cook a meal. Check out this giant list of cooking related subreddits to find something you like. Searching within these will get you even better results for specific types of recipes that meet your needs.
Don’t Stop at One Recipe
With so many different ways to find recipes, you’ll often be tempted to stick to the first one you find that matches your needs. But don’t stop there. Search more and find alternative recipes for the same dish.
The best part about these search engines is that you can quickly find multiple ways of making the same dish, with a few differences. Use one recipe you like as the base, but then read others and get the best elements from them.
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