Money & Career

10 fantastic free food and drink apps

10 fantastic free food and drink apps

Author: Canadian Living

Money & Career

10 fantastic free food and drink apps

There are over half a million apps for your iPhone in Apple's App Store -- and plenty to choose from for BlackBerry, Android and other platforms, too. But which ones are useful, and which ones will you install once and never use again? We found five top picks to help you eat and drink smarter.

1. TripAdvisor
Available for: iPhone, iPad, Android, Nokia, Windows Mobile, Palm
The TripAdvisor website, packed with reviews from countless travellers, has become an essential resource for planning vacations. Now you can easily access the site's content from your smartphone with the TripAdvisor app. Browse reviews of hotels, restaurants and bars in your own city and wherever you're travelling to get an idea of whether it's a spot you'll want to visit.

2. Jamie's Recipes
Available for: iPhone, iPad
Fans of the boyish British chef will adore having his recipes in their pocket wherever they go. This easy-to-use app offers meal ideas, step-by-step photos and even a shopping list. The free version comes with 10 recipes and three videos to get you started; extra recipe packs are available for an additional charge. Android users can get Jamie's 20-Minute Meals app for $7.99 -- it's $6.99 on the App Store.

3. Foodgawker
Available for: iPhone
The visually inclined will enjoy this app's adaptation of the popular website's modus operandi -- browse the curated collection of gorgeous images from food blogs, then click through to the recipe when something piques your interest. The formula's simple, but it works. Save top pictures to your favourites, and share interesting recipes with friends via Facebook or Twitter.

4. Winestein Pro
Available for: iPhone
Wine pairing isn't easy, especially when you're in a hurry and staring at a wall of bottles in your local liquor store. Use this "personal digital pocket sommelier" as you shop -- or browse your cellar -- to help plan meals and pick wines that fit your budget and preferences.

5. Gluten Free
Available for: iPhone
For those who need to avoid gluten for health reasons, reading lists of ingredients can be overwhelming -- and missing something on the list that contains gluten can have unhappy consequences. This simple app makes the task easier by providing an easy-to-use list of ingredients to help you read labels fast. Simple search the alphabetical list to see what a that label item really contains -- and know whether you can eat it symptom free.
 6. Cooking 
Available for: iPhone, iPad, Android 
Whether you're at home, out shopping or putting together a meal on the road, sometimes you need to know, say, how many bars or your favourite chocolate will be enough for that torte recipe. This app has you covered with measurement conversions, substitution suggestions and cooking tips that will keep you prepping food like a pro. 

7. Food Planner
Available for: Android 
Staying organized is the key to eating well and not wasting food, and this app helps you get there. Integrate your meal plan, recipes and shopping list in one place and even sync it between multiple phones -- send your spouse to do the shopping -- and the web interface. 

8. Mixology 
Available for: iPhone, Android (and paid for Windows Mobile) 
Cocktail lovers will adore carrying around thousands of recipes to browse and search. Use the Liquor Cabinet feature to find drink picks using the ingredients you have on hand, and browse through categories including Martinis, Shooters and Non-Alcoholic. Plus, use GPS to locate liquor stores and bars near you. Bonus for Canadians: easily switch between imperial and metric measurements, depending on your personal preferences. 

9. Yelp 
Available for: iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Palm, mobile web 
Like TripAdvisor, the Yelp app will let you browse reviews and add photos and tips for restaurants, bars and other businesses in your city and as you travel. Addresses and phone numbers are included so you can map and call spots you might want to visit, and OpenTable functionality is built in so you can make reservations without leaving the app. 

10. Wine Notes 
Available for: iPhone 
If you're a wine connoisseur, it's not just about trying what new -- a big part of the game is keeping track of your favourites so you'll remember to buy them again, or store extra bottles in your cellar. Wine Notes helps you organize your picks using text and photos so you'll never forget a preferred vintage again. Plus, keep a detailed list of what you already own and what you want to buy so you won't end up with too many -- or too few -- bottles of that Argentinian red you had for dinner the other night. 

An app's no replacement for great taste. But the right tools on your smartphone can make your life a little easier -- and more organized. We'll drink to that.


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Money & Career

10 fantastic free food and drink apps