Anybody who’s ever seen a photo that made their mouth water can appreciate a tool to fetch a recipe based solely on a picture. Addicts of the Food Porn subreddit probably have this thought every time a recipe-less post gets published on the thread. Luckily there are people out there who are trying to make the world a better place: developers at MIT have put together the Pic2Recipe project, a website and potential mobile app that can pull up recipes using just a picture as the search term.


This experimental project is being carried out by CSAIL (Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and works from a compilation of cookery databases like and All Recipes. The webapp can identify a photo and detect the various ingredients with an AI system that can verify some 65% of the components of a picture.

Though Pic2Recipe is still in the early phases of development, the program is remarkably true to expectations. That said, it doesn’t tell you specifically which ingredients are included in the photo, but rather offers a list of recipes that contain the detected ingredients. This makes it relatively simple to find the dish, though obviously it can’t do magic and match every picture you upload. Plus, as they advise from CSAIL at MIT, Pic2Recipe has problems with ambiguous dishes like sushi or smoothies.


Pic2Recipe is an ambitious project that we plan to keep close tabs on, with fingers crossed that it can make it to the point of becoming a full-blown Android app. In the meantime, if this post has made you hungry, check out these cookery apps available for Android. They may not be able to guess ingredients based on a picture, but you can still find dishes that will set any foodie’s mouth watering.

Kitchen Stories | Download APK

Yummly | Download APK

OidoCocina | Download APK


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