Thursday, April 21, 2016

Food Monster App

I'm back! It's been a while, I know. Lots going on. I promise I have a large backlog of photos and recipes to share with you all and plan to do so in the very near future. Looking forward to some fresh spring vegetable dishes!

I've also been checking out some great apps and recipe books, and I've got one to talk about here, as it will be released imminently.

If you haven't checked it out already, One Green Planet is a website with an admirable mission, self-described as "your online guide to making conscious choices that help people, animals and the planet." They approached me last year about featuring some of my recipes on the site, and I was more than happy to oblige.

The One Green Planet site has a lot going on. They feature plenty of animal interest pieces, videos and other headlines, a lifestyle section with tips and ideas, and stories about caring for the planet. They also happen to have a huge section on food that is good for you, the planet and the environment (right on!). Their hand-picked selection of recipes is thoughtful and features some delicious dishes, so I was excited when they announced they would be releasing a new app!

Food Monster screenshots

They've asked me to review their new app--it is called Food Monster and it features over 5000 vegan recipes, with approximately a dozen new recipes planned to be added each day.

Food Monster screenshots

It is super easy to navigate and read, which I definitely appreciate. Where it really excels is in the curation of the recipes. (Did I mention they have many of my recipes on there? Like my kimchi tofu tacos, balsamic seitan, and barbecue apricot meatballs)

Food Monster screenshots
They have great categories like seasonal and holiday recipes, as well as some more unusual ones, like "umami" and "spiralized veggies"--over 100 different categories in total. You can also search by ingredient or by your specific dietary restrictions (including gluten-free, raw, soy-free and many  more). They have essentially categorized these recipes in about every way you can imagine, which is the wonderful thing about viewing your recipes on this kind of platform. The options are unlimited!

It has many other features which I'd expect in an app like this, you can "love" recipes, see what's trending and also bookmark recipes to save them for future access. Seeing what's popular or similar to the recipe you have just viewed can be a great place to start when trying to find a quality meal.

And you can easily share links with anyone you'd like using the arrow in the top of the screen (I especially like this feature!).

Food Monster screenshots

The ingredients lists are easy to read and straightforward, and they really try to focus on simple, fast, delicious recipes.

Food Monster screenshots

The directions are similarly well-presented.

Food Monster screenshots

There are a few things I could do without--some of the recipes have "3-D photos" that kind of jump around very quickly on the screen. Although I don't mind a slow pan, I'd really much prefer to just have my food images in one place as I'm browsing through recipes. Occasionally the app can also be a little slow to load, but I am hopeful they will improve on this with time.

What's the catch? A subscription is required to access the recipes. It is $1.99 a month which is pretty reasonable, so you can always try it out and see if it strikes your fancy! If you do like it, it's worth paying $19.99 for the one year subscription.

The app will be released tomorrow, on Earth Day, but today they're offering special early access to all my readers, so here's a link to check it out!