Cooklist, a new mobile app that automatically keeps track of the groceries you buy and recommends recipes based on them, officially launched today. It also announced it has raised $250,000 “pre-seed” round, half of which will come from joining the TechStars Retail Accelerator in Minneapolis.

The Cooklist app connects with more than 80 grocers including Amazon, Walmart, Costco, and Kroger. Using those retail loyalty programs, Cooklist automatically keeps track of the groceries you purchase. Cooklist will then recommend one of 1.3 million recipes (and counting) based on the food you’ve bought and to help you avoid food waste, it will even alert you when products are going to expire.

I talked with Cooklist founders Daniel Vitiello and Brandon Warman, who explained that the expiration information isn’t precise. Instead, it uses general guidelines — like onions expiring in 1 – 2 months — to give people warnings about when items will go bad.

Vitiello and Warman built the first prototype of Cooklist last September and started developing the app in earnest this past January. The company is just the two founders at this point. Along with the money, their TechStars membership will get them office space at Target HQ (with whom TechStars partners), which is a little ironic as the app does not work with Target groceries yet.

Cooklist is free right now and Vitiello and Warman said that they are looking at a premium model when they move to monetize. A premium version could be a monthly subscription that would generate a smart shopping list and push those purchases to your preferred grocer for delivery or pickup.

Cooklist is facing a lot of competition as there are a number of apps looking to make a more direct connection between the food you have and the food you can make. Chefling does a very similar thing to Cooklist in keeping track of what you buy, but requires manual input. Innit’s guided cooking app lets you automatically adjust recipes by swapping in ingredients already have on hand.

Further up the stack, companies like Fexy Media, Whisk and AllRecipes are making recipes directly shoppable, enabling you to assemble all the ingredients you need for any recipe that same day.

Leave a Reply