MIT creates a system that turns food images into recipes

What if you can turn food photos into recipes? This will soon be possible with the artificial intelligence system trained by researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). They figured out a way to find the recipe of a meal just by analyzing a picture of that particular food.

A website to delight food lovers

It’s no wonder, Instagram feeds are overflowing with food images nowadays. Many of us have been guilty of posting photos of our food or meals on social media. While some may get cranky, many foodies are delighted to find their favourite foods on screen. It’s not always easy to find a recipe instantly after you’ve spotted the picture. Sometimes it means countless hours of scrolling through Pinterest to finally get the recipes. If only there was a way to turn those pictures into recipes. Well, it’s time to rejoice because MIT is developing a useful website called Pic2Recipe! It was initially a neural network created by electrical and computer science student Nick Hynes. The most exciting part is that the website can do much more than just identifying recipes. According to Hynes, it can allow people to analyze their meals and determine the nutritional value by predicting a list of all the ingredients used.

Pinterest launched a Shazam for Food

With a rise in food-focused media and culture, Pic2Recipe! is not the only project of its kind. Pinterest has recently announced a new recipe-finding feature that uses visual search technology. It is called Shazam for Food. The app is pretty straightforward. Shazam for Food allows users to simply angle their phone’s camera at a real dish in front of them, and the app will summon the dish ingredients while displaying its nutritional contents. Instead of scrolling through the feeds to find pictures of food, you can just take photos of a meal and find the relevant recipes.

Im2Calories calculates calories in a meal

Google took a step further by developing a new app that calculates the calories in a meal from a single image. Known as Im2Calories, the feature uses advanced image recognition technology to find out exactly what food you are having. This is particularly interesting for those health-conscious enthusiasts who like to keep track of what they eat or who are obsessed with weight loss. The app can also help manage diabetes, food allergies and other food-related diseases. Google research scientist, Kevin Murphy believes that the app can work as an advanced automated food diary that will provide consumers with a quick and practical way of monitoring their diet.

Food culture is booming on social media

Over the past few decades, we have witnessed a boom of food culture on social media platforms. The above projects are targeting a connected world obsessed with food photography, self-quantification, and calorie counting. Foodies across the globe are demonstrating an increasing awareness of healthy eating. The food and drink industry must harness artificial intelligence so as to offer an unrivalled customer experience to health-conscious consumers.

h/t: JWT Intelligence
Also available on