These Websites Answer the Age-Old Question: What Can I Make With These Ingredients?
Do you ever stand in front of your fridge and pantry, staring at the food inside, asking yourself, "What can I cook with what I have?" but drawing a blank? Of course you do — everyone does.
Well, the nights of random groceries are about to get a whole lot better, because there are actually tons of websites and apps that will give you recipes by ingredients — meaning, they'll tell you exactly what you can make with the ingredients that are in your fridge and pantry. Recipe-generator sites and apps are the best way to answer the "What can I make with what's in my fridge?" nights. While a kitchen-sink salad or cottage cheese on toast is certainly always an option, sites that function as a recipe finder by ingredients can help you elevate that leftover rice and random veggies by offering up dish options you may not have considered. Bonus: any of these apps are incredibly useful to minimize waste in your kitchen.
Most of these recipe generators are also free and super easy to use. All you have to do is enter a list of what's in your fridge (or just the ingredients you want to cook with), and a recipe-generator site or app will give you recipe options with those ingredients. Fair warning: the resulting list may include recipes that require a few additional ingredients — often staples most people have on hand, like spices, butter, or olive oil. But that's not always the case, so if your pantry is really bare, these sites and apps might still work for you.
Enter ingredients, get recipes: it's that simple. So what are you making for dinner tonight?
SuperCook is probably the most well-known app for finding recipes based on your ingredients. It's incredibly easy to use and has ultra specific filters to make your recipe search more personalized. You can narrow it down by choosing your main star ingredient or even what type of cuisine you'd like to try. If you don't want to download another app, you can also access SuperCook via a web browser.
2. Magic Fridge
Magic Fridge (also known as Frigo Magic) is a French app with more than 4,800 recipes. It allows you to specify the number of people you'll be cooking for and even has a "memo" feature that lets you know what ingredients are in-season, and provides nutritional information for each recipe, too.
The BigOven app lives up to its name, by being home to more than one million recipes. It comes with a few handy features like the "Use Up Leftovers" option, where you type in what leftovers you want to finish off without, you know, feeling like you're eating leftovers again.
The Yummly site provides AI-driven personalized recommendations by asking you for your favorite cuisines, food allergies and diets, personal tastes, and even cooking expertise level. Like all of these apps, Yummly helps reduce food waste by allowing you to search recipes by ingredients in their search bar.
Gumbo is a new UK website with an AI-powered recipe finder that helps you find meals to make with what you have at home. Head to the homepage, then start adding ingredients; Gumbo will scan the internet for recipes that fit your criteria and present tons of options that use what you have. To sort through your options, you can also filter by the amount of time taken, dietary preferences (vegetarian or vegan), and meal type (breakfast, desserts, drinks, mains, and sides).
You've heard about ChatGPT — now, meet ChefGPT. This AI-powered website offers several helpful features for cooking and meal planning, including one called PantryChef, which allows you to input the ingredients you have at home then generates recipes for you. The basic version is free (which comes with access to PantryChef), but you'll need to create an account to access it. If you want to upgrade to Pro for $3 per month, you'll get access to even more features, including meal planning and wine pairing.
— Additional reporting by Clara Amelia, Mirel Zaman, and Lauren Mazzo