Like most of America, I’ve increasingly experienced this shift in the last few years of never wanting to pay for anything online to loving the value of paying for something better. I feel like the benefits of Amazon Prime, Netflix, Spotify and other services have been so awesome that I actually enjoy giving someone $10 a month for something I need.

But until recently, it seemed crazy to me to pay for the New York Times and pay a second amount for the Cooking vertical. When I buy the physical paper, do you charge me by the section?

I finally broke down though because there are several recipes I’ve found and tried to return to in the Times and it’s such a firewall PITA. It’s $40 a year. How much am I gonna regret that $40 next time I’m searching for this amazing (!!!!) pimento cheese tomato pie recipe? It’s so frequently a mental block paying for subscriptions than it is the money, right?

At any rate, a few weeks in and I still have my usual love/hate relationship with the New York Times itself, but I absolutely LOVE THE COOKING APP. It’s the best recipe app on the market. Hands down. I wish America’s Test Kitchen would wholesale rip it off, because I love their recipes and right now I have to look through a massive, fine print cookbook or watch a DVD to get inspired. The tech industry should be embarrassed that an “old media company” built something so much better than any cooking or nutrition app I’ve seen out of a startup.

First off, they always have the nutritional info, which every recipe book/app/article should if McDonalds is required to. You can also email yourself or someone else the shopping list. Genius. You can save recipes to your online recipe box and organize them in different categories. And you can search by an astonishing array of filters: Quick + dinner + gluten free + vegan. It makes it easy for accommodating friends with allergies that you aren’t used to. (I am constantly confused about what contains gluten.)

It is astonishing how stone-age my recipe habits were before I started using this app, like, two weeks ago. I would literally PRINT recipes from the web or put Post-Its in cookbooks, and handwrite shopping lists and shrug when it came to the health info.

Nothing more profound to say than that. Download it if you love to cook.

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