Just Give Me The Recipe, Karen…

I’ve seen a number of memes and posts on social media lately that poke fun at food bloggers for giving the history of a recipe or ingredient, or for telling personal stories about making or eating the food, and the memories that go along with that particular recipe.

They all end with some variation of “Just give me the recipe, Karen!” Or Becky, or Susan, or whoever.

So today, we’re going to talk about WHY most recipe posts follow that format and what you can do to save yourself the aggravation if you don’t care about the background and just want the recipe.

Most bloggers have done a ton of research before they make their first blog post. They’ve purchased a domain name, chosen a theme in WordPress, and figured out a bunch of technical stuff before they even type their first word.

They buy courses, read advice from experienced bloggers, and scour Pinterest for free blogging tips.

Do you know what almost all of those resources teach new bloggers?

That in order to get any kind of search rankings whatsoever (so that you can even find that recipe that you’re complaining about, in the first place…), posts must be at least 1000 words long.

Think about that.

Think about how difficult it is to stretch a recipe into 1000 words without adding history, or stories, or other information.

Do you really want the recipe to read “One cup of rich, creamery butter, from a cow that’s been hand-fed select types of grasses, and receives a full-body massage every day. Two cups of flour, stone ground in a mill located in a small village known for its friendly villagers…”

No. No, you don’t want that at all.

They say to make posts personal–add stories, joke around, talk about the first time we made a recipe or about the memories that it evokes. Basically, all of the things that the “Just give me the recipe” folks complain about, are what bloggers are specifically taught to do.

So if you’re one of those people who isn’t interested in anything but the recipe, there are a couple things you can do.

Some bloggers install a button at the top of their posts that says “Jump to the Recipe”. This allows you to bypass all of the type and get right to the list of ingredients and instructions.

You can also scroll to the bottom of the post manually, and skip over the parts you don’t want to read. Most of the time, the recipe is at or near the bottom of the post, so simply scroll all the way to the bottom and then scroll back up just a tiny bit to find what you want.

It’s pretty simple. If you don’t want to read anything except the recipe, just scroll down and leave the text for the people who do want to read it.

And maybe realize that hundreds or thousands of people read those posts (depending on the blog), and that some people do like all that stuff that you’re complaining about.

So what’s your preference? Do you read the stories and the history, or skip right to the recipe and get to cooking? Let us know below!

6 thoughts on “Just Give Me The Recipe, Karen…”

  • I definitely like the stories, but the jump to button is helpful particularly if its a return visit and I really do just want the recipe. 🙂

  • I jump right to the recipe and I live for the jump to recipe button. But I don’t get salty with the food blogger about the stories either.

  • I like both the stories and the skip button. My bigger concerns are if the recipe is formatted well, and if all of the steps are there. I’ve read too many blogged recipes where the entire hour-long process is included in “3 Easy Steps”. Uh huh. Each step is a page and half long with the innumerable, hidden sub-steps. Or, worse yet, the recipe is formatted badly AND skips steps/doubles up on sub-steps. I read one brownie recipe that called for adding the cocoa powder 4 times. (No, it wasn’t because the cocoa powder was subdivided.) Another yeasted bread recipe skipped adding the yeast!

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