Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: Zest, Evernote Food, Food52, and more!

Whether it's for the holidays, a special occasion, a romantic dinner, or simply to impress family and friends, here are the very best food apps for the iPad!

Whether you're looking for just the right recipe for the holidays, or you want to just want to add some variety to what you cook in your home, there is no shortage of cooking and recipe apps for iPad in the App Store. From apps that can show you videos of how to prepare every foods to those that cater specifically to holiday cooking, there's no denying that the iPad makes for a great kitchen companion. Finding the best ones, however, can be greater than any kitchen challenge. Here are my favorites!


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Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: Food52

Food52 caters specifically to prepping and cooking for the holidays. Not only does it provide lots of suggestions and recipes, it functions as a planning guide too. Just choose the recipes you'd like to prepare and plan your holidays ahead of time. Food52 has collections of recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Memorial Day, Easter, Passover, and many more. The recipes Food52 offers come with video instructions for many and promise to be hassle free.

If you want easy recipe ideas that save you planning for the holidays, check out Food52.

Zest Recipe Manager

Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: Zest Recipe Manager for iPad

Zest doesn't provide news about food or recipe suggestions, it just stores your favorite recipes from anywhere on the web. There isn't even any need to copy URLs from Safari or somewhere else as Zest even has a built-in browser. By default Zest adds some of their favorite recipes but you can remove any you don't want. Basically, if a recipe you like is on the web, you can use Zest to store it in just a few taps. Navigate to it in the built-in browser and import it. Zest finds thumbnails and everything else automatically. I've tried it with several recipes and it's always dead accurate.

If you want a place to gather and store your recipes, you want Zest.

Allthecooks Recipes!

Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: Allthecooks Recipes

Allthecooks isn't just a recipe app, it can double as a grocery list and a place to store your own recipes. The main feature of Allthecooks is the robust community that's attached to it, which boasts over 150,000 unique recipes uploaded by members just like you. Allthecooks can also let you plug in what you've got to cook with and match those ingredients to recipes in your database. Who said you had to go to a grocery store to create a new and unique dinner?

If you want a recipe guide that's got a social twist to it, check out Allthecooks.

Evernote Food

Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: Evernote Food

Evernote Food is a place to collect recipes you like as well as explore new ones. Not only can you save individual recipes, but put together complete meals and store them for later. Evernote Food is also one of the only apps that lets you instantly find food places around you and in most cases, view photos and information other Evernote users have uploaded. This makes Evernote Food a great travel companion when you want to find somewhere interesting to eat.

If you want a recipe and food app that can also be used on the go, Evernote Food is perfect.

How to Cook Everything

Best recipe and cooking apps for iPad: How to cook everything for iPad

How to Cook Everything has over 2,000 recipes in its database, several cooking guides, and lots of tips and tricks on everything from tools you use in the kitchen to how to prepare different kinds of food. How to Cook Everything is more of a vast informational database than anything that just happens to give you a recipe list and grocery list feature. There are also built in temperature and unit conversion tools as well so no matter what recipe you're cooking, you always have the information you need right at your fingertips.

If you want to learn to cook better, not simply easier, How to Cook Everything is where you want to start.

Your picks?

These are my favorite cooking and recipes apps for the times I find myself in the kitchen unsure of what to make for the holidays or for dinner. I know many of you have looked in the fridge a time or two and struggled with figuring out what to cook. What apps have you loaded onto your iPad to help combat these kinds of situations? Let us know in the comments!

Allyson Kazmucha

iMore senior editor from 2011 to 2015.