Services that deliver the ingredients and recipes you need to make fresh, home-cooked meals, like Blue Apron, HelloFresh, and Plated, have grown in popularity as people are turning away from low-cost, fast food in favor of healthier alternatives. But those subscription services are still something of a luxury for many, thanks to their higher prices for the added convenience of measured ingredients sent to your home, versus simply doing the grocery shopping and meal planning for yourself.
Today, grocery delivery service Instacart is offering a different option that could see it competing with these home cooking services – it’s announcing an integration with top recipe site AllRecipes, which will allow users to click a button to fill their cart with all the necessary ingredients.
Instacart was already integrated into Yummly, the latter which recently raised $15 million and is now valued at $100 million for its recipe recommendation service reaching 10 million registered users.
But the AllRecipes.com integration could prove to have an even bigger impact, as AllRecipes.com is one of the largest social networks devoted to food and recipes, seeing 1.3 billion visits per year from home cooks. The platform, owned by Meredith Corporation, also includes 19 websites and 3 mobile apps reaching 24 countries and 13 languages which gives it a large footprint that goes well beyond the markets Instacart currently serves.
Similar to the earlier Yummly integration, AllRecipes users will be able to just click a button to add the necessary items for a favorite recipe to their online grocery cart, then have it delivered to their home via Instacart. For those who already use Instacart, the integration means they have a viable – and more affordable – alternative to subscribing to other home cooking services like Blue Apron, but it’s not quite as convenient as users have to do the meal planning for themselves.
After all, the nice thing about the ingredient subscription services is that they expose you to new recipes and dishes you may like with very little effort on your part.
But for those who don’t mind browsing recipe sites – or those who enjoy it – there’s also a convenience in an integration like this as well, since you no longer have to manually add a recipe’s ingredients to your cart one-by-one. Plus, you can adjust quantities based on what you already have in your home or want to order extras of, and you can combine your order with other grocery and household needs.
For Instacart, the deal will also give the grocery delivery service increased exposure among exactly the right demographic – those who like to cook at home, but who would rather seek out recipes for themselves then go shopping.
As part of the new integration, Allrecipes teams also created proprietary pairing algorithms that will match wine, packaged sides, and even cleaning products to the recipes themselves. When the order is complete, Instacart’s shoppers will pick up the items at local stores and deliver them to shoppers in the time frame specified.
The feature is live now available in the 18 metro regions that Instacart serves. Deliveries will come from the supported retailers, including Whole Foods, Costco, Safeway, and others, depending on your region and preferences.