BigOven API: Pricing Update for Developers

The BigOven 350,000+ Recipe Application Programming Interface (API) available at, allows any app or web developer to use simple REST-based queries to search over 350,000 recipes and get access to recipe details, ingredients and, depending upon plan, nutrition facts like calorie counts, carbohydrates, protein, display tens of thousands of photos and more.

We’ve seen some great uses of it, from large commercial sites adding a recipe area to their own lifestyle area to fitness studios incorporating healthy recipe suggestions to appliance manufacturers integrating recipe lookup in future consumer electronic devices.

There are no changes for existing paying API partners, but free experimental keys will be phased out on November 1st, 2015.

New Pricing for Entry-level: Plans start at just $99/month

In the two years since it’s been live, we’ve learned a few things. One thing we’ve learned is that while developers always love free — and who doesn’t — it’s most definitely not free to operate and support a free API. Each and every month, we spend thousands of dollars just operating the servers and paying for bandwidth, as well as fielding support requests on usage of the API.

Simply put, we need to better align the cost of operating and expanding the Recipe and Grocery List API with the revenue that supports it. We’ve seen thousands of requests for free experimental keys and while the vast majority of developers have abided by the Terms of Use, we’ve also occasionally seen usage of these free keys well beyond developer-experimental use into commercial usage. That’s regrettable, and one way to ensure only paid plans are used in commercial applications is to only offer paid plans.

So, we’ve made the decision to discontinue the free experimental key level, and are introducing a low-cost $99/month plan.  We realize that developers want to kick the tires, so we’re also adding a free 30-day trial period for all plan levels.

These changes will allow us to bring you the support and attention that you need, while still being one of the least-expensive production APIs in the food category, with robust recipe information and search, full JSON and XML support.

What About Existing Free Experimental Keys?

Free keys (starting with “dvx”) will continue to work until November 1st, 2015, but at that time we will phase them out in favor of paid plan keys.  If you already have a paid plan key, you don’t need to do anything.  There are no pricing changes for existing paid keys.

On November 1st 2015, all users of the free experimental keys must transition to a paid plan.  To get an API key, learn how to use it and try it free for 30 days, simply visit  We’d love to see what you create!

Sample Code: Hello Recipe World

Here’s a simple recipe fetch using jQuery:

<script src=""></script>
    function getRecipeJson() {
        var apiKey = "your-api-key-here";
        var recipeId = 196149; // simply pass in as shown below
        var url = "" + apiKey;
            type: "GET",
            dataType: 'json',
            cache: false,
            url: url,
            success: function (data) {

Likewise, here’s a simple recipe search:

<script src=""></script>
        function getRecipeJson() {
            var apiKey = "your-api-key-here";
            var titleKeyword = "lasagna";
            var url = ""
                  + titleKeyword 
                  + "&api_key="+apiKey;
                    type: "GET",
                    dataType: 'json',
                    cache: false,
                    url: url,
                    success: function (data) {

A Basic Fruit Smoothie for Every Season


Smoothies are fantastic for a number of reasons:

1. They come together quickly. In just a couple minutes, your drink will be ready to enjoy.

2. Smoothies are easy to make. Simply add all of your ingredients to a blender and blend.

3. They’re healthy (in general.) You can get fresh produce, protein, and calcium all in one beverage, with little fat.

4. On hot days, smoothies are refreshing. Skip that ice cream cone and sip on a cooling frosty glass of goodness instead.

You can use frozen fruit and blend up just about any type of smoothie year-round, but why not take advantage of seasonal, fresh fruit?

A summer smoothie calls for juicy blueberries. Add almond milk and almond butter for a nutty kick of protein. Frozen banana turns this beverage into a frosty, creamy treat. Add honey if you’re looking for some extra natural sweetness.

Apples are a traditional fall fruit. Blend them up with apple juice for some more sweetness, and include some plain low fat yogurt for protein. A pinch of ground cinnamon adds a boost of extra flavor. Don’t forget frozen banana!

Smoothies can be enjoyed during the winter months too. Take advantage of zesty oranges, which are packed with Vitamin C. Orange juice will help get your ingredients blending and add just a bit more sweetness. Low fat plain yogurt is your source of protein again, while frozen banana keeps things nice and cold.

Fresh strawberries are always a springtime favorite. Blend them up with low fat vanilla yogurt for protein and flavor, plus some frozen banana.

Add ice if you like your smoothies extra frosty.

“Search within My Recipes” now available on iOS and Android apps

BigOven has rolled out Search within My Recipes on our iOS and Android apps as well!

iOS: My Recipes Search

Looking for your favorite chicken dish? On iOS, just click on the magnifying glass on the home screen to search within “My Recipes.” Get the results from recipes you’ve Added, marked as Favorite or Try.


Android: My Recipes Search

Looking for your favorite pasta dish? On Android, go to the slide out drawer from the home screen, click Search to get Advanced Search. In Advanced Search, type in keyword or title and you’ll get results from recipes you’ve Added, marked as Favorite or Try.

Screenshot_2015-04-20-16-10-50 Screenshot_2015-04-20-16-10-55
Give it a try and let us know what you think. Happy Cooking!

“My Recipes”: Faster, New Features

My Recipes Icon
Your “My Recipes” area on BigOven just got better:

  • It loads faster.  Those with more than 20 recipes in a given folder should notice that the My Recipes area loads faster.  Previously, the entire folder had to be loaded and painted on the screen.  Now, just the first set of tiles are loaded, and more are loaded as you scroll down.
  • Search within “My Recipes.”  Looking for just your pie desserts?  Enter “pie” in the “Search My Recipes” box, and BigOven will limit the search to those recipes you’ve Added or marked Favorite or Try.  You can enter any keywords here, not just title keywords.  So, if you’re looking for any recipe you’ve favorited/marked-try/added that feature bacon and eggs, just enter “bacon eggs” in the search box and press enter.
  • List view shows handy display:  While this is not a new feature, based on some support inquiries, it’s an undiscovered one.  Look to the upper right of your “My Recipes” area, and you can toggle the view between “Picture Tile” and “List” view modes.

Picture Tile View

My Recipes Picture Tile View

My Recipes Picture Tile View

Search My Recipes for “Bacon”

Search My Recipes for Bacon

Search My Recipes for Bacon

List View

My Recipes: List View

My Recipes: List View

BigOven Early Access Program wants you!

BigOven is  looking for a few good women and men who want to get early access to BigOven features and try them out before everyone else. If you love your BigOven app, come join the Early Access Program.


Get a behind-the-scenes sneak peek! If you’re on this list, when BigOven has new releases ready to go, you’ll get early access (for free) and can provide us immediate feedback before we make a broader release to millions of cooks. Instructions to join below for Android and iOS.

Android users: Please go to the Google+ Community link and click the red “Join Community” button.

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 2.27.42 PM

After joining, click “Early Access Beta” in the About This Community section and follow the instructions.

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 2.25.04 PM

iOS users: If you want to participate, please request early access:

Request early access to BigOven apps.

Thanks and Happy Cooking!

“Search within my recipes” now available on the Web

One of the most popular requests we’ve heard from cooks is to make it easier to search within your own curated set of recipes, filtering out everyone else’s recipes.

Today we are releasing two important new features to beta on, which will be coming to the mobile apps over the coming months related to this request:

  1. Your “My Recipes” area now has a “Search My Recipes” box. Typing anything in there will search all the recipes you’ve Added, Favorited or marked “Want to Try” for the keyword(s) you enter.
  2. You’ll see your own recipes boosted on whenever you do a search when you’re signed in.  Any general search on now boosts those recipes which match your search criteria which you’ve Added, Favorited or marked Want To Try.  You’ll see your recipes those recipes at or near the top of any search result you do.  So, if you do a search for “Apple Pie”, you should see your “Apple Pie” recipes at or near the very top.

We’ll be tuning these two features over the coming weeks, and making them mobile, but wanted you to know about their general availability.

How To Search Just Your Recipes

Simply visit your “My Recipes” cookbook on BigOven by clicking on the cookbook icon (#1 in figure below) in the toolbar:

My Recipes Icon

My Recipes

Then, type keyword(s) into “Search My Recipes” (#3 in figure below):

Visit your "My Recipes" cookbook to search just your recipes

Visit your “My Recipes” cookbook to search just your recipes

If I type in “chocolate dessert”, I’m going to see just the recipes I’ve added/favorited/marked-try that have the words “chocolate” and “dessert” somewhere in them, without all the thousands of other ones:

Searching just my recipes for "chocolate dessert".

Searching just my recipes for “chocolate dessert”.

General Searches Now More Personalized

Also with this release, we’re boosting those of your recipes that meet the criteria of your search.  This feature only works for signed-in users.  It also means that each cook can (and likely will) see a different set of search results, as you build up your collection.

For instance, when I search “chicken piccata” using the general site-wide search available in the toolbar (#2 in the figure above), I’m going to see all those recipes that have “chicken piccata” in them, but those recipes that I’ve added or favorited or marked interesting to me (i.e., want-to-try) are going to float to the top:

A general search for "chicken piccata" will boost mine higher.

A general search for “chicken piccata” will boost mine higher.  Note the first tile on the list is a Favorite and a “Try”

Coming To Mobile Apps

Personalized boosting is coming to the apps shortly, and explicit searching within your own recipes will follow in free updates later this year.

Got ideas for how BigOven can make your cooking even easier? Let us know. We’re listening.


BigOven launches new home page

From the BigOven home page, you can now find the top four seasonal recipe collections, Quick & Easy recipe ideas, popular dishes and recipe picks from our team.

BP1Go ahead, search for the perfect recipe.

BP2View the top four seasonal recipe collections. Click on the circular collections image to view all collections. The navigation bar sticks to the top of the page, so you can easily access recipe collections, your recipes, grocery list, menu planner and use up leftovers when scrolling.

BP3Get ideas for Quick & Easy weeknight dinners. Fresh recipes will be featured weekly.

BP4See popular recipes that home cooks are raving about now.

BP5In case you need another reason to explore BigOven, click on one of the above buttons. Might we suggest discovering a recipe that will use up those leftovers in your fridge?

BP52Take a look at recipes we’re loving at BigOven.

BP6Get tasty inspiration and tips by following us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Google+.

Subscribe to our email list to receive even more delicious ideas.


Feel free to let us know what you think! Send us a note at


BigOven proudly partners with Samsung’s Chef Collection Series

BigOven is pleased to be featured in Samsung’s Chef Collection Series Tablet.

During the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2015 this week, Samsung unveiled their Chef Collection Series partners. Samsung launched a culinary initiative to create its next-generation appliances, The Chef Collection Series. In their effort to take a holistic approach to the cooking process, Samsung is introducing content and services via their Chef Collection tablet, pre-loaded with its own Chef Collection app. The app will showcase cooking content and recipes from noted partners such as BigOven. Updated bi-weekly, the app will provide recipe inspiration for cooks, whether they are making something for dinner that night, or preparing a special occasion meal. 

In addition, BigOven’s app will be pre-installed with the exclusive Chef Collection tablet, available in Spring 2015.


Food blogger? Add “Save Recipe” features to your blog!

If you’re a food blogger, check out, which shows free and low-cost ways for you to enhance your blog:

  • Improve your search engine presence with rich-snippet markup
  • Add “Save Recipe” buttons to your recipes, letting your readers remember your recipes in their own personal collection. Saving the recipe comes with a full link back to your site, keeping them coming back to your site time and again.
  • Import all your past posts from Ziplist format into a new, easy-to-use recipe manager
  • Let your readers quickly add your recipe’s items to their mobile grocery list, and carry it around in the free BigOven Recipe and Grocery App
  • Become eligible for marketing exposure and enhanced visibility in the BigOven apps, which are used by millions of cooks.

BigOven has partnered with EasyRecipe, WP Ultimate Recipe and Recipe Hero to deliver the “Save Recipe” feature in all the leading food blogger plugins on the WordPress marketplace.  In addition, we’ve put up a new website devoted to food bloggers, complete with a list of authorized plugin partners and demos of how to add these features to your site:


BigOven launches easy-to-use navigation and interactive home screen on iOS and Android apps

BigOven is rolling out a simplified navigation bar and improved, interactive home screen on iOS and Android apps. From the home screen, you can find delicious seasonal recipes, recent raves, and the latest and greatest from BigOven. When you click on the simplified bottom navigation bar, you can quickly and easily get to BigOven’s best features:

Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 9.28.22 AM GET IDEAS:  Find inspiration for your next meal by browsing through Seasonal Collections, Menus and Recent Raves.
Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 9.27.03 AM MY RECIPES:  Store all your recipes in one place. Save your Favorites and recipes To Try. See your Added and clipped recipes from your favorite sites.
Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 9.27.13 AM GROCERY LIST:  Make your list from scratch or BigOven can convert your recipes into a list, sorted alphabetically and by department.
Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 9.27.42 AM MENU PLANNER:  Plan a week’s worth of meals. Share your menu plan via email.
Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 9.27.25 AM USE UP LEFTOVERS:  Use up what’s in your fridge. Type in three ingredients and see what you can make.

Give it a try and let us know what you think! Send us a note at If you’re loving the new look, feel free to rate us in the app store too!