For years Paprika has been my go-to recipe management and grocery list application, and I think it is the best solution of its kind. In moving more of my work to Evernote, however, I have tried to instead use Evernote’s Food app, which builds a cookbook from your clipped pages. It’s great. But it also lacks any sort of grocery list feature.
Enter Grocerytrip, a third party solution from Honeycrisp Apps and a recent winner at the Evernote Devcup. Grocerytrip’s concept is simple enough: You add a “grocerytrip” tag to your recipes, and the Grocerytrip iOS app builds a shopping list based on the ingredients in those notes. If used with the Evernote Food apps, Grocerytrip has the potential to turn Evernote into a recipe management solution on par with Paprika or YummySoup.
I typically compile my grocery lists as checkbox-based notes in Evernote, and these were the first things I imported into Grocerytrip. The results were impressive. Grocerytrip generated a shopping list from those items, broken down by aisles, with additional data hidden in an info pane. Awesome.
The process of importing actual recipes, however, was less than successful. I have a large collection of clipped slow cooker recipes from A Year of Slow Cooking, and Grocerytrip struggled to differentiate between ingredients and instructions. Before leaving for the store, I had to spend a few minutes pruning items like “add and drain rinsed garbonzo beans” from my list. This problem could be solved by modifying Grocerytrip to look for checkbox lists of ingredients in a given note. A user would have to manually adjust the ingredient lists in their clippings, but this would be just a few seconds of work to make the auto-generated lists much more useful. As is, the list building logic wasn’t ideal for my uses.
While Grocerytrip has a visual simplicity that feels at home in iOS 7, it could also benefit from a few usability adjustments. For example, I couldn’t find a way to delete items from my list. Since the app had misinterpreted my recipes, this was a problem. I decided to remove these from my list by simply checking them off and then hiding completed items. However, while at the store, I accidentally checked off a few items before actually finding them. I then had to go into settings, show completed items, uncheck the item, hide completed items again–it was a drag. I would like to see Honeycrsip add a couple of simple gestures to Grocerytrip: swipe to delete an item, and pinch between two items to show the last hidden item between them.
It’s obvious that Grocerytrip is in its early stages, and if you’re willing to do a bit of work–especially in building your own shopping notes–it’s well worth the $2.99. I suspect that additional development and refinement will make Grocerytrip an essential Evernote app.