While Shop’n’Cook Menu offers more pre-loaded recipes than most of the other Mac recipe software programs we reviewed, the recipes are mostly chicken- or cake-based. That is, there are three cookbooks: one with half a dozen various recipes, one with several hundred chicken recipes and one with several hundred recipes for various cakes. This lack of variety in recipe types is unfortunate, but the variety within each type is astounding.
Shop’n’Cook Menu redeems itself slightly with its included nutritional information for each recipe. One has to wonder, however, just how accurate the information is. Many other programs noted that it is difficult to calculate nutritional information for a recipe prepared at home because of variations between ingredient brands and substitutions. Users who are following strict nutritional regimens under a physician’s direction, or due to allergy restrictions, should be wary when using the nutritional information in this program. Users who simply want ballpark figures and estimates, however, will find this feature incredibly useful.
This program also offers a convenient and easy to use scale tool, to adjust the servings that any given recipe puts out. Surprisingly, serving size and yield conversion tools were absent in many programs we reviewed, so it was a nice change to see this handy feature offered.
Another positive attribute to Shop’n’Cook Menu is that it offers both menu planning and shopping list features. The shopping list consists of categories that are already broken down according to where they can be found in the grocery store. Within each category is a list of items. Users simply check the items they need, and the software generates a shopping list. The drag and drop features found in many of the other programs we reviewed were missing or difficult to maneuver in Shop’n’Cook Menu.
Unfortunately, the search options for this program were among the lowest quality of all the Mac recipe software programs we reviewed. Unlike most other programs, searches are performed by keyword only, and the software does not search the directions of the recipe. For cooks who have a wide selection of recipes stored, this will become increasingly problematic. To find a recipe, one has to know a keyword from the title (which is no help when a recipe is called “Mabodofu”) or a main ingredient (which can be tedious if it is a common one, such as garlic or chicken).
Additionally, we found that Shop’n’Cook Menu was incredibly slow to load. It may have been a result of the fact that we were testing the free trial version of the software, though that seems doubtful. Cooks who are pressed for time or who are simply impatient should definitely take this into consideration.
Though this was the only program for which we thought a help menu might be necessary, the support options were the least advanced of any program we reviewed. The user guide was simply a link to a single-page website, and even included misspelled words.
Though it offers an impressive number of recipes, Shop’n’Cook Menu’s shortcomings do not justify its expense. Check out our side-by-side comparison of Mac recipe software to find a more affordable, easier to use program.
Shop’n’Cook Menu has the second largest catalogue of pre-loaded recipes of all the software we reviewed.
This program is the same price as our #1 rated product, and offers fewer conveniences.
We do not recommend Shop’n’Cook Menu, despite its features, because it lacks the conveniences of similarly priced or less expensive products.