What's the best recipe software?

ni
nib
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Thu Oct 04, 2007 11:59 pm Post

What's the best recipe software for the Mac? I'm a new MacBook owner and I can't get rid of my desktop PC until I find a really good recipe program. I've got about a GB of them (I like choices, and variety) and I need to be able to import whole collections at a time.

My PC recipe program can export in many formats so mac software that can import MM or MC formats should work just fine.

I'd appreciate input from anyone who uses recipe software.

dr
druid
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 3:18 am Post

Two good sites for Mac software are VersionTracker and MacUpDate. Go there, enter "recipe" in the search box, and sort by Ratings. Then read the comments by users (often far more candid than developer claims). You may also look for freeware or shareware, less expensive offerings that are often better than much-hyped bloatware by well-known companies.

http://www.versiontracker.com/macosx/
http://www.macupdate.com/

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Siren
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 8:28 am Post

nib wrote:What's the best recipe software for the Mac? I'm a new MacBook owner and I can't get rid of my desktop PC until I find a really good recipe program. I've got about a GB of them (I like choices, and variety) and I need to be able to import whole collections at a time.

My PC recipe program can export in many formats so mac software that can import MM or MC formats should work just fine.

I'd appreciate input from anyone who uses recipe software.

Funnily enough, I splashed out on some recipe software about 36 hours ago, so your question is quite timely! I looked into this about 6-12 months ago and there were lots of options, but most seemed to be gathering dust, with no recent updates. I downloaded trial versions, but nothing grabbed my attention. Please note that I am not recommending the following site for downloads, because I have no idea who they are, but as a source of information I used to find out what was available and which I bookmarked for future reference:
http://www.pure-mac.com/recipes.html

Night before last, I couldn't sleep, so I thought I would clear out any redundant apps from my Applications folder. One of these was MacGourmet, which someone had recommended strongly to me but which I hadn't been especially taken with. Before trashing it, I thought I would have a quick look at it again - and the auto-update said there was a new version. Bearing in mind that I was just whiling away the midnight hours, I thought I might as well look at the new version before scrapping it, so downloaded the update and started to play with it. And this time, I liked it! And there is a new optional plug-in (extra cost) for adding nutrition data from the USDA database (or whatever it's called). I was having so much fun playing with it, and putting in recipes in various ways, that when I reached yet another trial version session limit (don't you just hate those!) I bought the thing. And the plug-in (the favourable exchange rate has a lot to answer for). And 36 hours later, I am happily transferring and entering recipes, and don't regret the purchase at all! :-)

It can (apparently) import in MasterCook format, amongst others, and also has a rather nice facility for importing from web pages (some sites automatically, but others via a text clipping Services facility - fortunately, I use Safari; Services aren't available in some browsers e.g. Firefox).

So that is what I would recommend. (Of course, it's possible that some of the other aps may also have had updates since I last looked at them, so my recent research was by no means exhaustive, and my recommendation may not be worth the pixels it's written on.)

You can find out more at the MacGourmet site:
http://www.advenio.com/macgourmet/index.html

EDITED TO ADD - Lots of people also seem to like A Cook's Books (web site: http://www.3caam.com/products.html), but I haven't looked at it recently.

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peterdcox
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 9:31 am Post

Since there seem to be some of us about can I plug my new food blog called Past Food? http://www.pastfood.blogspot.com

Love you all to share eating experiences .....
Peter D Cox
Management and development consultant, Mac advocate, Welsh learner, and long-time but intermittent blogger. Broadcaster and author of stuff http://www.pdconair.com

dr
druid
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 4:15 pm Post

peterdcox wrote:Since there seem to be some of us about can I plug my new food blog called Past Food?


We can be grateful that you didn't call it Passed Food. :shock:

fl
flow
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 6:24 pm Post

To be honest, I have downloaded and test-driven every single Mac recipe application and found all of them wanting. I'm still using test files until I can find something I really like.

There was a contest some time ago, where Mac users were invited to suggest ideas for a really great Mac application to be created. After they picked an idea (a recipe management app, by the way), they hired a developer to create it.

I don't remember where I saw an update of their progress on the app, but it is on the web somewhere. And I liked what I saw, so I'm waiting for that to be released.

If you find an app you like in the meantime, please post because I am still looking for one as well.

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AmberV
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 8:43 pm Post

The application, and contest, you are referring to is located here: http://mydreamapp.com/news/post/389/. It looks somewhat interesting, if a bit heavy-handed in the design department (in my opinion). I've never been a fan of texture rich application design. Austin, the developer, is known more for glam than guts (developer of Disco and AppZapper), but this does look more feature laden than either of those mentioned applications, so we'll see I guess.

Vapourware aside, here is a pretty good round-up of what you can try right now: TidBits Cookbook Round-up.
.:.
Ioa Petra'ka
“Whole sight, or all the rest is desolation.” —John Fowles

ni
nib
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Fri Oct 05, 2007 10:22 pm Post

Thanks, everyone for the input. I'm evaluating a few now and initially it looks like MacGourmet is in the lead with A Cooks Books as runner-up. But that could change as I continue to fool around with the field. (I haven't fooled around with the field since my single days). So long ago that
Methuselah called me, "Sir."

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em
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Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:39 am Post

I just sat down and started copying recipes into Scrivener and I have to say it works pretty well.

I created a subfolder of Soups titled New England Squash Soup. Inside I created three documents: Ingredients, Instructions, and Nutritional Information. I then typed the relevant info into each page. As a synopsis of the folder I added the serving size and prep time. I used external links to reference where I found the recipe. I used internal links to reference dishes (other folders) that it could be paired with. Keywords: low fat, Thanksgiving, soup.

I'm interested in MacGourmet but thought I'd post how I used Scrivener. It's a good fit, if you want just basic recipes (eg - not generating a shopping list) and love Scrivener.

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xiamenese
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Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:30 am Post

Before OS-X I created a recipe database in Filemaker Pro, but the upgrade price has been too steep and I no longer need such a powerful database app for other purposes.

Now I'm simply using Yojimbo, though when I've done my upgrade to Leopard I'm planning to have a look at Bento ... I guess keeping recipes in a lunchbox is kind of appropriate, but again, if the price is too steep once it goes commercial, I won't bother.

Mark

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em
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Thu Nov 22, 2007 5:08 pm Post

I'm deadlocked between MacGourmet and YummySoup. YummySoup has less features (advantage or drawback, you decide) and two features that stand out: full screen mode and the recipe entry screen.

Full Screen actually is full screen (unlike Chef View in MacGourmet) and works with the Apple remote. You can even have it read the recipe aloud!

Recipe entry in YummySoup is much less tedious than MacGourmet. Everything is in one window so you can just run down the recipe and type it in. MacGourmet has 6 or so tabs that must be fiddled with to enter the recipe.

There's also some confusing moments with MacGourmet like that there's keywords and categories. What's the difference? Couldn't they just be combined?

Being big on usability I'd like to use YummySoup. The problem is that there's no categories or keywords which is a dealbreaker. They will be implemented in the future, according to the developer.

http://hungryseacow.com/YummySoup%21%20 ... st%21.html

(side note: it scares me when software developers use spaces in their URLS -- all those percent20's)

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Heath
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Sun Dec 02, 2007 2:23 pm Post

I like something called Yum (freeware from http://www.nixanz.com) - it's free, and awesome, and he updates it all the time and is very responsive. I don't know about MasterCook format imports (I don't have MasterCook) but it's a great program!

ni
nib
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Sun Dec 02, 2007 4:28 pm Post

I’ve yet to find a Mac recipe program that is as powerful as my Windows “Now You’re Cookingâ€

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xiamenese
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Sun Dec 02, 2007 4:49 pm Post

Nib, if you're on 10.5 have you thought about trying Bento ... I'm sure you could make a good recipe database in that. I used to use FileMaker, but couldn't afford the upgrade when I went onto OS-X, so it'll be interesting what they will sting us for Bento when it's finally released, but I like the look of it, though I haven't had much chance to play.

Recipe collection in a lunch-box ... sounds kind of natural :wink:

Mark

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AmberV
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Sun Dec 02, 2007 5:29 pm Post

nib wrote:I can export from NYC in a number of popular formats,


This stuff's made in New York City!
.:.
Ioa Petra'ka
“Whole sight, or all the rest is desolation.” —John Fowles