Org-Mode Food List

Org-Mode Food List

I love to cook and to bake, because it relaxes me a lot. I have a lot of fun testing new recipes which I found in the Internet or in a cookbook. There a so many creative peoples out there who share their expertise. However, the problem is to keep track of the stuff I would like to test. Before I started to use Emacs and Org mode intensively, I printed the recipes or had a very big bookmark list. However, it was rather chaotic, because I’m not very good at keeping thinks in an order or to keep it in an order for long. Now, with the help of Org mode, I can keep a few thinks in order and one of those are my cooking stuff.

Mr. C was as long as I know him an Emacs User and he was trying to convince me to use it. I always responded: “I will never use this nerdy piece of software”. However, a few years back, I considered to use Org mode and this means I had to use Emacs. It took me a while to get use to it, however after a while I was using Emacs not just for my Org mode stuff, but also for coding. The only problem I have with Emacs are all the shortcuts; I just can’t remember them very well…

For my I found the following blog-post from Sacha Chua very inspiring. I created a template to add a recipe to my and with the help of Mr. C I was able to generate a shopping list of the recipes I would like to cook.

Basically, my file has three main parts: foodplaner, shopping list and my recipes. The recipes part contains all my recipes that I cooked or would like to cook. For that, I changed the TODO key words to the following:


The key words are also important for the generation of the shopping list, but that comes later.

Recipe template

At the beginning, I thought about a way to collect my recipes with Org mode and add notes to them (changes I made or if we liked it). My first idea was to use tags, but after a while the tag list was getting longer and longer and this was a little bit confusing. So, I began to use properties and after a while I generated a template to add a recipe to my new collection:

How my recipe part of my looks like.

At the moment this system works for me, but there are a few points that bothers me:

  1. Consistences of my ingredients list
  2. Language and measurement problems -> convert units
  3. How to convert an entry to a simple blog-post

Generate shopping list

This is the main part that was inspired by Sacha Chua. She does bulk cooking and creates a large shopping list with the stuff she would like to cook. My version does the same, however the list will be generated with the ingredients list of the recipes that are marked as TOCOOK.

The next improvement of the shopping list will be just to include the first three columns of the ingredients list and to add an extra column with the recipes name

If you have other ideas or improvements? Please share it with me.