You’ve been working or studying all day and suddenly realize you’re starving but there’s no food in the house. Actually, that’s not true, there is food in the house, but it’s just a random collection of ingredients: a knob of cheddar, a can of chickpeas, a bottle of hot sauce and an avocado. What to do? New to the app store, Munchies, is here to help you make do with what’s on hand using a recipe search based on ingredients. Stock your Munchies pantry and then ask, “What can I make?” for recipes using strictly what you’ve got. Can Munchies really do what it claims? Creating a tool with such lofty goals is a tough job, right up there with world peace.

Does this app deliver on its promise? Keep reading to find out.

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“Healthy desserts” seems like an oxymoron, right? What if desserts could be healthy and rich, gooey, sweet, comforting, chocolaty, creamy and decadent? The folks from Green Kitchen are back with another recipe app that proves you can have your cake and eat it too — Healthy Desserts. The 58 recipes rely heavily on fresh fruits, natural sweeteners, healthy fats and whole grains. Many of the desserts are vegan and/or gluten free.

Think it sounds too good to be true? These guys have street cred, recognized by Saveur magazine this year as a “Best Food Blog” in the special diets category and having just released their first cookbook this past April, Vegetarian Everyday. If you’re looking for dessert recipes worthy of entertaining or something special for the weekend breakfast table, Healthy Desserts offers a wide array of cakes, cookies, muffins, bars, buns, smoothies and frozen treats.

Keep reading to learn more about making more wholesome desserts at home.

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Do you want to learn to cook but don’t know where to start? Mark Bittman’s Cooking Basics app takes the practical cooking style of his How To Cook Everything recipe app and applies it to the basic building blocks of understanding ingredients and mastering techniques. The most visual of all Bittman’s apps, Cooking Basics is rich in step-by-step photos and mouth-watering food photography. Preparing a meal is broken down into the smallest tasks, like how to toast spices or sear meat, so there can be no barriers to those who want to learn how to cook. If you’ve ever wanted to get in the kitchen but have been too intimidated to try, now is the time and this is the app you need.

Keep reading to learn more about this engaging cooking tool.

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Farm to table is all the rage in the United States (and across the world), but what does it really mean? You see the name of the local farmer credited on the menu and ponder the fresh fish special scrawled on the chalkboard, but you don’t stop to think about the journey that brings farmer (or fisherman or cheese maker) and chef together. Recipes from Harvest to Heat is an eye-catching, mouth-watering app that will open your mind and inspire your home cooking. Once you read the heartfelt stories of those who dedicate their lives to producing the highest quality ingredients, it may even change the way you value food.

Brought to you by the publishers of the cookbook, Harvest to Heat: Cooking with America’s Best Chefs, Farmers, and Artisans, this free little app is a unique collection of recipes that will challenge novice home cooks and invigorate serious food lovers.

Keep reading to learn more about Harvest to Heat.

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Are you interested in learning about wine, but bored with droll instructional books or turned off by elite wine-tasting groups? Maybe you’re looking to better understand the foreign words on wine labels or grasp the intricacies of pairing food and wine? The learning curve to becoming a wine aficionado may seem steep, but the creators of Pocket Wine want to change that perception. The sellers, Wine Paradigm, offer their wine knowledge and experience as a model to give you an enhanced understanding of the wine world. The result is a very useful wine reference tool for iPad, loaded with in-depth information on grape varieties, wine regions and tasting notes along with an extensive glossary of wine terminology.

This app is unlike any wine app in that it claims to give you the knowledge and guidance to make your own informed decisions about wine, rather than relying on the reviews of experts or social media. Both novices and more experienced wine hobbyists will appreciate Pocket Wine, where information is presented in terms a layman can understand, without dumbing down the content.

Wine geeks, read on to begin the journey of discovering your palate and understanding grape growing regions around the globe.

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When I set out to review Mastering the Art of French Cooking, I took it for granted that this would be just another foodie app review. Several hours later I was still wading through the story of Julia’s life, immersed in her world and fascinated by the stories told by her long-time editor, Judith Jones. This is the second app I’ve reviewed from Random House, Inc. (the first was Giada) and they seem to have a knack for using the mobile environment to truly capture the essence of their chosen author. Mastering the Art of French Cooking tells the story of Julia’s life through a multi-media experience including audio anecdotes, rare photographs of Julia Child, original typed and handwritten letters plus vintage instructional videos by the cook herself.

This app is for Francophiles, die-hard fans of the legendary Julia Child, serious foodies and even (especially) freshman cooks. Random House, Inc. has masterfully packaged Julia’s wisdom in an app that’s everything to everyone – fresh and modern food photography paired with timeless techniques and the most popular of Julia’s recipes.

Keep reading to lose yourself in the mouth-watering world of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
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How often do you wish you had more than one timer in the kitchen? How many nights do you cook dinner with at least two pots on the fire and something roasting in the oven too? One-pot meals are fine, but most of the time cooking involves multi-tasking. It’s so frustrating to realize both the microwave and oven timers are occupied and scramble around the house for your phone or another clock while the rice burns and who knows how long the chicken has been roasting? If you’ve ever felt scrambled and unorganized while preparing a meal, KitchenPad Timer is here to help.

Being a good cook begins with keeping a clean, organized workspace. Professional chefs call this “mis en place”, meaning “everything in its place.” KitchenPad Timer isn’t just a remedial alarm clock – it’s a sleek, thoughtfully designed app that provides a bird’s-eye-view of all your timers at once. Never burn the cookies again and always get everything on the table piping hot and perfectly cooked with this handy kitchen utility app.

Keep reading to learn more about how KitchenPad Timer can help you be a better cook.

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Are you a Giada de Laurentiis fan? I remember watching her in the early days of Food Network on her Emmy award winning show, Everyday Italian. She’s just as likable today as she was then. Giada isn’t just a Food Network celebrity; she graduated from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, owned her own catering company and has proven to be an entrepreneur with seemingly endless amounts of enthusiasm and energy. Several years and one child later she’s still going strong, making regular appearances on the Today Show, writing cookbooks and starring in another popular series, Giada at Home.

If you’re a Giada fan then you’ve got to check out the free Giada app featuring recipes from her latest cookbook, “Weeknights with Giada.” The theme is “Quick and simple recipes to revamp dinner.” Many moms out there may find it a comfort that even a famous chef meets challenges when it comes to getting dinner on the table every weeknight after work. Giada is here for you, with plenty of useful tips and encouragement in video “bites” throughout the app. Looking to revitalize your weeknight suppers? Keep reading to learn how Giada can help.

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Are you interested in learning the art of pairing wine and cheese? The Cheese & Wine app is here to help. Award-winning wine writer Max Allen and international cheese expert Will Studd have come together to share their extensive knowledge of fromage and wine in an app that’s approachable for novice foodies and interesting enough for food and wine aficionados. Don’t be left in the dark when your dinner companions wax lyrical over a bottle of wine. Impress your friends by ordering a hand-selected cheese course for the table. Cheese & Wine delivers plenty of thoughtful pairings, helpful tips and descriptive terms to help you learn the magic behind spectacular pairings.

Pour yourself a glass of wine and keep reading to learn more.

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If you think healthy food is bland and boring, the Green Kitchen app is here to change your perception. This collection of vegetarian recipes from the Scandinavian kitchen of David and Luise (and adorable young daughter Elsa) focuses on vibrant fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and unrefined sugars. Not only are the recipes delicious, but also the photos are stunning and the app functions beautifully with a sleek and modern design. Bon Appétit magazine agrees, saying Green Kitchen is “proving that even wholesome recipes can make for tantalizing food porn.”

Inspired by their popular food blog, Green Kitchen Stories, the creators offer a collection of 78 fresh and healthy recipes, each including mouthwatering photos. Each one is labeled Raw, Gluten Free, Vegan, Whole Grain or Sugar Free. No matter what your lifestyle is, you’ll be inspired to get in the kitchen and cook with nature’s bounty (even carnivores like me). Read on to see more of this vegetarian cooking app. (more…)

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