Saturday, November 17, 2012

What Yumprint is Making For Thanksgiving

Homemade rolls. Turkey with stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce. Pumpkin pie. All the makings of a glorious Thanksgiving dinner...or a Thanksgiving disaster.

Typical Thanksgiving fare includes dishes most of us don't prepare very often.  In fact, I can't think of a time that I've had stuffing and cranberry sauce other than on Thanksgiving.  So, unless you're willing to prepare a Thanksgiving "test" dinner in addition to the annual feast (which I most certainly am not), the recipes chosen for the big day had better be good.  More than just good, these Thanksgiving recipes have to be foolproof because if something can go wrong in the kitchen, it will most likely happen in the chaos of preparing Thanksgiving dinner.

There is another reason why careful recipe selection is critical for Thanksgiving dinner:  because the dinner is Thanksgiving.  Of any holiday, Thanksgiving is the one whose crowning jewel is the cuisine.  For some, the best part may be the turkey, for others it's the pie.  Either way, to thoroughly celebrate this harvest holiday is to celebrate it with excellent food.

Enjoying good food with friends and family is why I love Thanksgiving, but it's also why many dread the holiday when it's their turn to host the dinner.

Solution: Find quality, rigorously vetted recipes from sources you know and trust.  Where does one find those all-star recipes?

Thanks to Yumprint's new approach to recipe collection and meal planning, you can browse through your friend's cookbooks and find their best recipes.  You can be confident that a recipes really is excellent because Yumprint will tell you which recipes they've actually cooked, how often, what they rate it, where they found it, and if they made any adaptations.

For instance, when your passionate-about-baking-friend goes through the trial and error of 10 different dinner roll recipes to find the perfect one, you don't have to.  You'll know which one is the best and why based on her reviews and comments.

Finding the perfect pumpkin pie is easier when you can read through your mother-in-law's 4-star rating and special adaptation to a recipe that's been in her family for ages.

Maybe you had some particularly memorable mashed potatoes at your co-worker's dinner party last Sunday and you want to use her recipe on Thanksgiving day.  All you need to do is look up that date on her recipe timeline and voila! the recipe is found (provided she has been using Yumprint as she ought).

Are you getting the idea?

Yumprint's social solution to discovering reliable recipes can be your solution to avoiding disaster this Thanksgiving.

Oh, and as a bonus.  Yumprint will automatically calculate the nutritional content of each recipe to help you select more healthful dishes for your Thanksgiving feast and feel confident about that extra slice of pie.

So without further ado, here's a small sampling of what people on Yumprint are cooking this Thanksgiving:

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

How Meal Planning Became Fun

I can’t believe it!

I have two full weeks of meals planned, all thanks to Yumprint. My only problem now is that I can’t decide which week I am more excited to make.

This was far from the truth before I started using Yumprint.

Before Yumprint, the job of creating just one week of meals was tedious. It involved several cookbooks, and pages and pages of recipes printed from multiple online sources strewn across my counter.

I then spent half and hour pouring through them attempting to find something, anything that sounded even remotely enticing. After settling on a few mediocre meals, I turned to the web hoping to find inspiration.
Another hour passes... finally I have a menu. I leave feeling little to no enthusiasm, but at least the job is done.

Now with Yumprint, I am constantly inspired. A new excitement for cooking has been lit and shockingly, I even look forward to making dinner. {GASP!} I know.

But it is so easy. My menu is at the top of every page, I can drag and drop dinners, breakfasts, desserts, and whatever else my little heart desires, all with a single click.

Yumprint has changed my life! We eat healthier- more vegetarian meals, more fruit, and a whole lot more variety. Thank you Yumprint!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The peak of pumpkin-ness

Oh the pumpkin craze! If you're a regular visitor to Yumprint, you can't help but notice that the pumpkin obsession has been going on for a while now. Being the geeky types that we are, we wanted to quantify just how crazy things have gotten.

Here's a fun chart showing the percentage of recipes in our daily feed that contain pumpkin. Our daily feed is generated from the recipes that people save with the Yumprint Extension, that people cook, and that people resave from others on Yumprint.

Given the trend, it's hard to say that we've even reached the peak, but for what's it's worth, we can declare the current peak of pumpkin-ness to be just a couple of days after Halloween*. Of course, that could all change as we approach Thanksgiving.

So what's driving all that pumpkin love? Here are the ten most popular pumpkin recipes on Yumprint as of today:



* 8% may not seem like a very tall peak, but that means that more than 1 in 13 recipes contained pumpkin. Compare that to May when only 1 in 56 recipes contained pumpkin.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Go vote! ... then enjoy some election night food

I am having a few friends over tonight to watch the results of the election and like any hostess, I want to serve good food. So, naturally, I got online and started exploring my options. When I searched for "election night party food" the results oscillated between disgusting but quintessential "American" options like hot dogs or macaroni and cheese

Not worth eating cake pops artfully frosted in red, white and blue that require too much time and food coloring. Not happening on a Tuesday night. So much for patriotic appetizers.

Not worth making

Changing my search criteria to delicious, seasonal, and (somewhat) American, I am much more pleased with the results: Mulling Cider, Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Cream Cheese Frosting, and Kettle Corn.

These recipes have been highly recommended from Yumprint users I know and trust, minimizing the risk that my cooking will generate a gag reflex for unsuspecting guests.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Introducing Personalized Nutrition

We're excited to announce the release of personalized nutrition guidance.

At its core is a scoring system based on the philosophy that what you've eaten determines what you should eat next.

The scoring system helps you to achieve an ideal diet

If your diet is low on vegetables, recipes with lots of vegetables receive high scores. If you've eaten plenty of vegetables, those same recipes receive lower scores. If you're doing a good job avoiding saturated fat, then the score won't penalize you for a small indulgence.

In short, the scoring system helps you to achieve an ideal diet without you having to do any of the thinking.

Complicated food journaling is not required

Just press "cooked it" after you finish a recipe, or use Yumprint to plan meals, and we'll automatically understand your diet.  Since the Yumprint Extension makes adding recipes as simple as a single click, it really couldn't get any easier.

I'll quickly point out some highlights ...

1: Holistic scoring

In the top left corner, you'll see your diet's overall score*.

We assume your diet to be everything on your timeline. So just press "cooked it" or  use the timeline to plan your meals and you'll be all set.

2: Detailed reports

Clicking the score shows where your diet is succeeding and where it can improve.

3: At-a-glance guidance

Every recipe is marked with points indicating what that recipe will do for your diet score.

Just choose recipes with positive points (the ones in green) and you'll be on your way to a perfectly balanced diet.

* Our scores are currently based on the Healthy Eating Index. In the future, we'll be releasing alternative eating philosophies. Which philosophy should we introduce next? Paleo? Low carb? Zone?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

How to create the last cookbook you'll ever need.

The Yumprint Extension makes building a digital cookbook effortless, so effortless that you don't even have to remember to use it - it will remind you.

Step 1: Get the extension.

Step 2: Go to any web page containing a recipe

Step 3: Look for the Yumprint button to slide in from the top right corner (this will only happen if a recipe is actually on the page)

Step 4: Click the button

Step 5: Press Save

Step 6: Choose a cookbook

Step 7: Repeat as many times as you'd like. There's no limit to the number or size of your cookbooks on Yumprint.

More detail about the Yumprint Extension is in this post.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

What do fried ice cream, au gratin potatoes, and breaded ranch chicken all have in common?

Before I tell you, let me tell you why I ask.

Last week, we ran a big analysis to find the ten best recipes for pregnant women. Fried ice cream, au gratin potatoes, and breaded chicken all showed up in the top ten.

That seemed wrong.

In fact, it wasn't just those three recipes. Six of the top ten seemed highly suspicious:

Long Boy Burgers
Oven "Fried" Chicken
Fried Ice Cream
Au Gratin Potato Casserole
Hashbrown Casserole
Breaded Ranch Chicken

Seriously, should we really be recommending that pregnant women have a daily allowance of fried ice cream?

After careful examination, we finally realized what was going on.

All six recipes have one thing in common.


Our scoring system included three nutrients that are really hard to get from natural foods: thiamin, vitamin b12, and vitamin d.

Less than 5% of recipes contain enough of those three nutrients. Corn flakes are fortified with all three.

Is this fair? Should the nutrition in fortified foods count just as much as naturally occurring nutrition?

We didn't think so, but what do you think?

Maybe we should have called our post "Throw out the prenatal, eat corn flakes instead."

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Throw away your cookbooks.

I love books. I love them for all the things this picture conveys - their beauty, their smell, their texture.

But if you love books mostly for what's inside of them, you should throw away your paper versions. This is especially true for cookbooks.

Six months ago, my wife and I got rid of our cookbooks. Before we did, we pulled out our favorite recipes, used a free OCR reader to convert them to a Google doc, and then used the Yumprint Extension to convert the Google doc to a digital cookbook. It took several hours.

My wife was skeptical that going digital would work, so she kept her cookbooks in a secret place.

Because all our favorite recipes were now on Yumprint, we started going there every time we cooked, and something amazing started to happen ...

We'd go to Yumprint to open one of those favorite recipes and we'd end up seeing a recipe my sister cooked, a recipe we'd saved from Pinterest with the Yumprint Extension, or a new recipe from one of our favorite food blogs ... and we'd cook that instead.

Without realizing it, our favorite recipes were forgotten - replaced by a continual stream of new and exciting recipes.

This is why a digital cookbook is so much better than a paper one ...

Once you've flipped through a paper cookbook a few times, you know what's in there. You settle on a few favorites and you don't open yourself up to inspiration until you buy your next cookbook.

But every time you open Yumprint, it's a new a cookbook - it's a new source of inspiration. So instead of just discovering new recipes every time you buy a cookbook, you discover new recipes every time you cook.

And all of the sudden your cooking becomes dynamic and fresh instead of stagnant and stale.

So what happened to our paper cookbooks? They've been forgotten too.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The 31 butternut squash-iest recipes on Yumprint

Just in case you wanted to eat butternut squash for a month (I wouldn't blame you), here's how to do it without ever repeating a recipe.

Alternatively, if you're trying to break a butternut squash addiction, start at #1 and proceed to #31 ... it's like a 31-step program that takes you from 88% squash all the way down to 14% squash.

Whatever the reason, here are the 31 butternut squash-iest recipes on Yumprint.

Save them - and any recipe on the web - with the Yumprint Extension.

#4 Butternut Squash Dip
63% squash

#9 Butternut Squash Bake
48% squash

#12 Curried Squash Soup Recipe
42% squash

#15 Roasted Winter Squash
37% squash

#18 Barley and Roasted Pilaf
30% squash

#20 Butternut Squash Soup
28% squash

#28 Quinoa Salad
16% squash

#30 Butternut Squash Risotto
14% squash