Yummly: friend or foe?
Hey foodies! Tried out the Yummly app yet? If you haven’t heard of it yet, it’s next in line to compete against Pinterest. Yes, even the almighty Pinterest. I first learned of this app from my cousin who lives in Nebraska (everything new happens up North first and trickles down, has anyone else noticed?). She said it was her new go-to recipe app that allowed her to browse only recipes. I’ve been cooking a lot more since I moved into this apartment, so this app seemed to open a new door to recipes unimaginable.
Yummly was first introduced as a website in 2010 by a man who loathes mustard. Why mustard? It is his least favorite ingredient, and there was no way to search for recipes that did not contain mustard. With “15 million monthly unique visitors,” it is becoming one of the most popular recipe sites on the web (Yummly).
Back to the app: it is available for free (!) in the Google Play Store as well as the App Store. The shortcut it adds to your phone or tablet’s home screen is adorable: a little orange circle that says “Yum,” like a happy little round belly. When I first downloaded this about a month ago, I was amazed! The pictures are bright and take up the whole screen, allowing me to see the dish as well as the name without seeing all the annoying recipes underneath. There is a convenient “Yum” button on each recipe, too, so I can save the dish for later. The feed I have on the home screen of the app is a Based On Your Recent Yums feed, showing a ton of new recipes I haven’t seen yet. There is hardly any white space, and the pictures are just delicious.
Let’s say I’ve found a recipe that made me drool on my screen: I’d click the “Yum” button, and then click on a little green menu at the top left of my screen to find “My Yums.” There are multiple sections here, of which I can choose to organize and store my new favorite recipes. I’d just tap the little organizing tab (at the right side of each dish with 3 little filing folders) and check off which list I’d like to stick that recipe into. My current lists are here (you can see I even have a Valentine’s Day section; if you’re intrigued, my beau and I baked cornish hens):
Possibly my favorite ability that this app has is organizing all of the ingredients into one list, the calories per serving into another, and then the directions in a link to the website where the recipe originated. Under ingredients, I can add all the ingredients that aren’t in my kitchen to a shopping list that is also included in the app. When I saw this I said, “Whaaaaa?!” I never leave the house without a shopping list (I’m quite forgetful), so this addition was super exciting for me! There is also an option at the top of the ingredients list where I can add all of the ingredients immediately to my shopping list.
There is a link to my full shopping list (which would include all of my ingredients for however many recipes I want) in the little green menu where “My Yums” is located. There, I can choose how I want Yummly to organize my list (I definitely don’t do this at home). It can be separated by aisle or by recipe. I prefer by the aisle, so when I am in the vegetable section, I can get all of the veggies I need at one time rather than skipping over something and having to go all the way back across the store. Best of all, I don’t need to remember a pen to mark off what I’ve stuffed into my basket! I can check off the box next to the ingredient with just a tap.
Now that I’ve shown such a positive, glittering light upon this fantastic application, it’s time to get real.
When I click on the “Directions” tab, I don’t want the app to start blinking and scrolling down the page on its own. Maybe this issue has something to do with the advertisements on some blogs, but it is really irritating. I just open the website in my browser (Google Chrome) so that the website runs more smoothly and stops jumping around on the page. Usually I can tell when a website won’t work properly with the app because it only has a few “Yums.” The more “Yums” on a recipe, the better! Especially if it’s over 1,000!
I also cannot stand how the e-mail system is faulty. For Valentine’s Day, I received an e-mail for easy chocolate desserts. When I tried to open any of the recipes, I was given an error message saying something about the kitchen being down. If none of the links work in an e-mail, why would I even want to receive it? It’s more trash mail that I have to delete every day. A solution to this, however, is to visit My Account and opting out of notifications.
You’ve heard me praise and you’ve heard me grumble, but my overall view of Yummly is a little on the disappointed side. There were less letdowns than highlights of this app, but because Pinterest is still kicking and Yummly doesn’t make reading directions any easier, I would still choose Pinterest first. Plus, I usually pin the best recipes anyway. (I might make my shopping lists on Yummly, though…) Maybe Pinterest is just too familiar to me to give up. Now it is your turn to decide—at least this decision is free.
Yummly. “About Yummly.” 2010. Web. 15 February 2016. <http://www.yummly.com/about/>