Today, when nearly every recipe you can imagine has been digitized and stored in your favorite app or the cloud, home cooks continue to print them out and buy or use cookbooks in the kitchen. In fact, almost every food website or cooking blog includes a prominent print button. But why? Sure, no one wants to make their phone or tablet prey to a grease splatter or flour-coated fingers, and you might have to touch your phone a lot during a lengthy recipe to refer back. But it’s more than that. Turns out we still want the tangible, the tactile, the visual when we seek out the perfectly spiced gingerbread recipe or even just want to dress up our normal Thursday night chicken. After all the online searching, we still hit “print.”
People over 35 are more likely to print out a recipe, according to a 2015 study from Google, Kraft Foods and mcgarrybowen, and 41% of 25- to 34-year-olds cooks also use recipes on paper. When you print, you can see ingredients, directions, and images all at the same time, instead of having to scroll or tab. Additionally, a well-used recipe or a beautiful image in a cookbook can transport us to memories of childhood or the flavors of a well-remembered vacation. If you’re one of the many recipe printers out there, you’re in good company.