Some people just want your recipes.... What do you do?

It is that time of the season with Thanksgiving and Christmas where people share their wonderful dishes and bake goods. I am sure many of you have created foods which have wooed people. So much so that they ask for your recipes - again and again.

You, however, slowly noticed that they never actually make any of the dishes. Probably because the “idea” to create your dishes is attractive, but the thought of actually “working” is too much.

For me, a lot of the recipes take time to write down and explain. It can easily take me 10-30 min to write down a good recipes, and thought that the person will just sit on it is just seem very wasteful.

I have stopped sharing recipes with people who have never used my recipes. I would just say something like “After you create a dish based on one of the recipes, then I will share more with you.”

What do you do?

Can you share your recipes, please?


I am an open house when it comes to information.

In another field, I have an extensive website which publishes years of my research into a project. I am usually very happy when I come across extracts that people have used for their own needs (often without credtiing the source). On the occasions when I get an email asking if soemone can use the information, I always agree, telling them that, whilst it’d be nice if they credited the source there’s no need if it doesnt suit them.


At the very least, I have the family and friends write down the recipe as I dictate it. There should be some by in don’t you think? I am more than happy to share a recipe as long as the person asking isn’t wasting my time. I find the asking is often a compliment not necessarily a serious ask.

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How do you know the “never make any of the dishes”? Maybe they did and it didn’t work out and they don’t want to hurt your feelings. Or maybe they plan to make it in the future.

I can’t think of any reason I’d refuse to give someone a recipe. I’ve never created a dish from the ground up (has anyone?), so none of my recipes are really “mine,” anyway. And they’re all in documents stored on my computer, so it takes very little time and effort to print or email them. I couldn’t care less whether the person requesting the recipe actually makes the dish - why would I? Maybe she’s wallpapering her bathroom with recipes. It’s really none of my business.


Most of my recipes (both those that I have created from the ground up and those that are tweaks on a recipe I found in a book or magazine) are stored online, in Pepperplate. Pepperplate allows you to email recipes directly from the app to anyone. I just send them and forget about it. I would guess that 95% of the time, they don’t get made, but quite honestly I’m guilty of that too, when I request a recipe from someone else.

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Give them to them verbally, very quickly.

If they know how to cook, that’s enough.

And if they dont, once their eyeballs start to roll you know they won’t ask again.

Btw my Swedish grandfather’s famous recipe for smoked salmon always started this way:

“First you gotta catch a fish…”


I also use Pepperplate, or Microsoft Word, so sending recipes is a snap. Just yesterday I served Persian dill rice with tadigh, which took me many tries to perfect; when I was asked how to make it, I sent the recipe right after the meal, which took 2 minutes. Who cares if the recipient makes the dish? I’m happy to be asked and happy to be able to provide good information to others. Isn’t that what we’re all doing on this website?


I never knew this. Thanks!

Or alternatively, they never made any. Why would it hurt my feeling? For example, beside cooking, people have asked me write down my scientific procedure. I don’t get my feeling hurt if they cannot reproduce my assays.
However, it does take me quiet a bit of time to write out the procedure (more in the case of a full assay). If I know the person is not ever going to use my recipes or my assay protocols, I am not going to waste my time writing them out.

I don’t think I’ve ever gone so far as to find out about people making the dish for the recipe that I gave to them.

I just take it as flattery that they liked the dish enough to ask for the recipe. I don’t know what everyone’s lives are like, how much they cook and how busy they may be. If they come back to me and report making the recipe I gave them, great. Hopefully all worked out and they enjoyed it.

Honestly, I don’t have a problem sharing recipes.


I find it kind of tacky. Whenever I’ve been in a situation like that, it seems to like something to say because the person isn’t good at small talk.

I graciously say, “Of course, later, I’m going to refill my glass now.” :sunglasses:

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Before I retired, I brought a lot of food into my office. I always made sure that I sent the recipe to my email (complete with my tweaks and detailed instructions for the cooking-impaired). That way I could easily accommodate all requests. I did receive some lovely feedback, including one woman who called me at least 4 times one evening while she was making it ( and the next day told me how everyone at her family reunion raved) and another who entered a dish in her local small town contest and won, 1st prize. If somebody likes my food, I’m more than happy to share the recipe.


Yeah. I wish it was like this, but my situation is a little different. I would be bringing new baked good every month or so, and about half of the time (particularly one person) would ask for the recipe of the baked good. When I just verbally said yes…etc, the person would follow up with emails and other in a few days continuously. So she seemed to pretty serious in getting the recipes, not just for a small talk.

The first few times was fine, but writing up recipes every month or so, just a little more works than I am ready. I am glad that many of you find it easy to share your recipes.

Since its just one person, how about asking her whether she has any success with your recipes and see what she does with it?

Or, just buy baked goods for the office or stop bringing baked goods altogether.

This is just one example. This is a past situation, not a current situation. As I have stated, this person in this case has never actually tried working on my recipes. She just asked for them.

Alternatively, next time you bring baked/ cooked food for others to eat, just follow a published recipe available online. When people ask, just direct them to that.

It is in the past. This is not an on-going issue. Years ago. I just bought it up for a discussion.

But like you have said, it was one person. So it seems rather “overkill” to change the entire workflow because there was this one person. To buy baked good or to stop bringing food in because there was this one individual. This is in the past, I am not actually asking for a solution. In my case, I continued to share the foods. I was curious if other people have similar situations.

Anyway, I am glad that most of you do not find it as an issue.