Meal planning apps are becoming increasingly popular as people everywhere take greater inventory of their healthy habits and budgets.
It might sound simple, but meal planning can improve your life greatly. Not only does it offer you greater control over what you eat, but it allows you to better manage how much you spend on food. Perhaps most importantly of all, it reduces the time you spend on your meals.
With those benefits in mind, here are some of the best meal planning apps of 2020.
If you can get past this app’s confusing name, you’ll find that it really is one of the best all-around meal planning apps available for iOS.
“All-around” is kind of the optimal phrase here. Mealime offers everything from a built-in grocery list to nutritional information. It can even help you personalize your diet and get the food you want delivered to you. However, it truly shines as a meal planner that allows you to put together simple recipes and then cook them with the help of a hands-free cooking mode.
Other apps may offer better specialty features, but it’s really hard to go wrong with everything that you get here.
Having a large selection of recipes available to you is a great way to stay in control of what you cook. When you feel like you can rely on a recipe, you’re far more likely to return to it.
In its simplest form, Paprika is a recipe manager. It’s a digital cookbook that you build page by page with your favorite recipes. It can even help you find some new ones along the way. However, Paprika also happens to be a great meal planning app. With features like an extensive calendar and embedded timers, Paprika proves to be remarkably effective at helping you plan meals out in advance.
This is just a great option if you want a simple app that can offer more advanced features as you need them.
Want to start planning your meals but feel like you don’t know where to start? PlateJoy may be one of the best meal planning apps for you.
PlateJoy’s most noteworthy feature is its built-in quizzes and algorithms. Basically, the app asks you to answer some questions about your diet and goals. It then helps you find recipes and meal plan ideas based on your preferences. This app also lets you build your own grocery lists and sync with Instacart for deliveries.
PlateJoy offers a potentially vital service for those who don’t quite know where to start when it comes to smartly planning and preparing meals.
Plan To Eat
You might think that most meal planning apps are for people who are just getting started. Maybe you’ve already gotten started and want to find an app that helps you execute your meal plan more efficiently.
Well, Plan to Eat can certainly be that app. It may look like a simpler app, and that’s because it is. It even encourages you to enter your own recipes. However, for those who are already building their own recipes, this is a fantastic way to automate and expedite the rest of the shopping and cooking process.
With the help of a variety of features, Plan to Eat is one of the better assistants out there for everyone who already has meal plans in place and just need a little help making it all a bit easier.
Allrecipes Dinner Spinner
Allrecipes is one of the better and more popular recipe sites out there. Much like its main app, this spin-off allows you to easily access all of those recipes and discover them at your leisure.
Where this app separates itself is via its meal planning and social elements. Your profile on the app quickly becomes your home base for your favorite recipes as well as a way to share your work with others. You can even access the profiles of other users in order to expand your knowledge base.
Many apps can help you throw together some recipes, but the way this app encourages exploration through socializing helps it stand out from the pack.
If you adhere to a vegan diet, then you probably know that a lot of extra work goes into meal planning. Just needing to double-check recipes to ensure the ingredients fit your diet can be an annoying timesink.
Vegan Pocket not only grants you access to vegan recipes but offers some appealing extra features once you’ve found them. For instance, this app helps you decide which of its various recipes work best for you based on your preferences and other dietary restrictions.
Vegan cooks looking to make life a little easier on themselves need to consider this one of the absolute best meal planning apps.
With so many free meal planning apps out there, it might seem crazy to go with a premium alternative. Yet, MealPlan+ makes a compelling argument that the few extra dollars are worth it.
Few apps make it easier to go from recipe to grocery store to kitchen in as little time as possible. Thanks to a series of automations and sharing options, MealPlan+ removes the most annoying hassles from the cooking process. You can even create templates and themed lists for future use.
This is simply one of the deepest meal planning apps out there. If you’re serious about sticking with an organized meal prep system, then we think it’s certainly worth a few extra dollars to be able to access everything you get here.
As another premium meal planning option, Mealboard had better bring quite a lot to the table in order to be worthy of consideration. Thankfully, it sports some impressive features that really does make it one of the most appealing options out there.
It’s all about the details with Mealboard. From the ability to digitally organize your pantry to smart price checking options, nearly every aspect of the meal planning process is accounted for somewhere in this app. It helps you save time, save money, and simply eat better by making shopping and cooking a breeze.
With its easy-to-access design and deeper features, we think that Mealboard is one of the few premium meal planning apps that is worth more than you’ll pay to get it.
There’s a reason why Yummly is one of the most popular meal planning apps on the app store. Actually, there are several reasons.
It starts with the recipes. With over 2 million built-in recipe options, Yummly instantly grants you access to a whole new world of options. It also happens to boast one of the more colorful and lively layouts out there, which is always a plus.
Ultimately, though, Yummly separates itself via smart features such as advanced scheduling which are typically hidden behind a paywall. Honestly, there’s just not much you could want from such an app that you won’t find here.
It’s true that Pepper Plate is a bit simpler than some of the other apps that we’ve recommended on this list. Yet, we’re not entirely convinced that this is a bad thing.
Pepper Plate offers most functions that you’d expect from meal planning apps. There’s a grocery list, some recipes, and even a calendar. It lacks a lot of the more advanced features found elsewhere, but as an incredibly simple and responsive app, it might prove to be an upgrade for meal planners who want a better grocery list.
If that sounds like you, be sure to give this free app a look.
A desire to lose weight or eat healthier is certainly one of the biggest reasons why people turn to meal plans. So far as that goes, EatThisMuch is certainly one of the most noteworthy meal planning apps that you’ll find for iOS.
EatThisMuch is built-around helping you find new meals and recipes that adhere to your current diet restrictions and goals. Every part of the process focuses on helping you get where you want to be. It’s also one of the absolute best apps in this class when it comes to allowing you to quickly turn recipes into a grocery list.
If you’re still working on that new year’s resolution, we highly recommend this app to help you get there.