COOKMATE

Client: Personal Project

Role: User Research

Team: Seyi Amole

Duration: 4 Weeks

Cookmate is an exciting way for to discover new recipes with just ingredients for busy college students, particularly those with dietary restrictions. 

For this project, my responsibilities were user interviews, synthesizing research insights, personas, and experience mapping. 

BACKGROUND

PROBLEM SPACE

As much as college students enjoy looking through beautiful recipes online, there's almost never any follow through. For one, people tend to get overwhelmed by how many ingredients they need versus how much they have available to them. Considering most college students also have very busy schedules, they usually don’t have the time to plan ahead to buy the necessary ingredients.

Recipe apps and websites are great for helping college students decide what to eat, but they rarely have any of the ingredients readily available. They usually have to plan ahead or hope to get lucky and find the perfect recipe with only the ingredients they currently have.

For most, the very idea of using a recipe app is to save time, but for time sensitive students, they end up spending just as much time if not more on sourcing ingredients.

GOALS

+ Develop a highly personalized product to reflect how people figure out what to eat.

+ Allow people to use available ingredients to find the most suitable recipes

USER INTERVIEWS

KEY FINDINGS

We approached this project by asking our peers about their eating and cooking habits. We were curious as to why most recipe apps weren't catering to the "time sensitive student". We wanted to understand what their motivations, triggers and abilities are. We hoped to gain insight into the basic decision making process when figuring out what to eat.

 

We asked each person what some of their motivating factors are in determining what to eat and ranked the results on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the highest. 

+ Multiple lifestyle factors influence students' eating habits 

+ Most students rotate around the same meals throughout the week. 

+ Users would rather explore and try new recipes in social settings 
+ Using recipes means: more time spent going to the store, unfamiliarity with ingredients, and budget constraints.

Dietary restrictions are more common and complex than we initially thought

USER PERSONAS

RIGHTEOUS RILEY

SOCIAL SARAH

Ethical Obligations 5, Work Schedule 4, Dietary Restrictions 3

Social Habits 5, Convenient Location 5, Disinterest in Cooking 4

BUSY BRAYDEN

Stress & Fatigue 5Commute Time 4Food Rationing 4

+ Vegetarian strongly against eating meat

Works part time in addition to school, so has hectic schedule

+ Struggles to find interesting recipes online that cater to her schedule and available ingredients

+ Often grabs a quick and convenient meal at local fast food restaurants after long shifts

+ Wants to find recipes that cater to her schedule and dietary restrictions 

+ Bases dining choices on availability and location

+ Frequently dines out or gets takeout

+ Frequently eats out with friends 

+ Doesn't like to cook, but wants to experiment with new recipes because eating out is expensive

+ Wants a way to cook easy but fun recipes she can try with her friends

+ Student who spends a lot of time commuting

Struggles to find balance between cooking, school, and commuting

+ Orders food instead of cooking due to fatigue

+ Rations leftovers for subsequent meals

Wants to plan meals around his schedule

EXPERIENCE MAPPING

CONTENT STRATEGY

We reflected on the issues users have with current recipe apps and focused on designing a time-saving approach. We considered what our target user want to do with recipes and how will they would find recipes with ingredients they have readily available? We noted these down and began brainstorming possible interactions.

For more information on the interface design, check out Seyi's portfolio!

RECIPES

+ Favorite recipes

+ View ingredients

+ Similar recipes

+ Create list

INGREDIENTS

+ Browse/search

+ Possible combinations

+ Substitute ingredients

DIETARY RESTRICTIONS

+ Filter lists

+ Tutorials

+ Ingredient information

FINAL DESIGN

INGREDIENTS FIRST

Search for recipes with only the ingredients that you have available. If you need inspiration, no worries we’ve got you covered, just tap on the explore icon or simply swipe down.

FILTER YOUR NEEDS

We understand that finding the perfect recipe that caters to your exact needs might be difficult. With Cookmate, we have a growing list of filters to get you exactly what you’d love.

COOKING WITH RECIPES

Once you find the perfect recipe for the night, we’ve got you covered with a step by step videos on how to get that chocolate cake just right.

FUTURE EXPLORATIONS

We hope to keep iterating through this concept of personalized recipes. We are currently working on further exploring certain contexts that may surround cooking that aren't represented in this version, particularly the social aspects.