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August 26, 2021

Where Do Consumers Go for Recipes? We Have the Answer!

Tony Treadway

Where do most customers get recipes?

Even with lessening fears of the pandemic, supermarket sales are still up 14% compared to 2019*. If you are a food manufacturer, the opportunity to share multiple ways consumers can use your products is imperative, but where do they go to look for recipes? Some new research has the answer.

Before we begin, here are some important facts. IRI reports that 56% of consumers are bored with the meals they tend to serve and only 14% look to their supermarket to provide meal inspiration. Yet cooking enthusiasts represent 53% of sales growth in supermarkets over the past year. Confident cooks have beat back boredom in the meals they prepare by experimenting with different cuts of meat and species of fresh seafood, representing 44% of sales growth*.

Giving cooking enthusiasts some inspiration through recipes, or better yet, videos of new recipes offer great ROI for a food manufacturer and the retailer. Where should those recipes reside is the important question.

IRI says shared recipes among family and friends is the number one way consumers get a new recipe, then they go online to find them followed by YouTube and cookbooks. At the bottom of the list is Pinterest followed by Facebook and Instagram.

We recently surveyed 1,200 consumers nationwide to find out which of the online sites they are going to for inspiration. Of the completed surveys in July of this year, 85% said they were either confident or comfortable in their cooking skills. More than 62% said they “just Googled it” when looking for inspiration. Among recipe-centric sites, finished on top followed by,, and Only 7% said they used their supermarket’s website for recipe information, something supermarkets should pay attention to enhance their brand loyalty.

As for how much consumers value recipe inspiration by a food manufacturer, we have another fresh nugget of insight. This can be of significant value to any company considering e-commerce as an option for selling their products. We asked consumers to tell us the added value they would be willing to pay for a recipe book or recipe card that could be placed in their e-commerce order, and the answer was an amazing $8.53. When asked the added value of offering an online cooking class via a QR code or website for their order, it was an amazing $9.43!

So here is your look behind the curtain of why recipes and recipe videos can be so important in encouraging consumers to use your product or ingredient and thus buy it on their next visit to the supermarket. The more ways they can use your product, the more they will buy.

If you would like additional information on getting into the minds of consumers or on how to build a successful recipe activation program, contact us, because we build cult brands in the food business.

*IRI, August 2021