Editor's Note: This article was published in it's original form in August of 2019. It has been updated to provide the current most popular food APIs based on page visits to ProgrammableWeb.
Developers looking to create applications for chefs, nutritionists, farmers, and foodies have plenty of Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs, to choose from. ProgrammableWeb's Food category contains hundreds of APIs that provide information about food, products, nutrition, restaurants, spirits, special diets, food remedies, nutrients, organics, food labels & barcodes, allergens, ordering, delivery services, grocery markets, farming & agriculture, taste, recipes, reviews and more.
In this article, we examine ten popular Food APIs, chosen by user page visits on ProgrammableWeb.
1. Spoonacular Food API
spoonacular's Food and Recipe API provides access to over 360,000 recipes and 80,000 food products. The API enables users to search for recipes using natural language (such as "gluten-free brownies without sugar"). Users can visualize recipe nutrition and ingredient lists, analyze recipe costs, find recipes by nutritional requirements, favorite ingredients, or what's in the refrigerator, classify recipes, convert ingredient amounts, and even compute an entire meal plan. The service covers ingredients, recipes, food products, and menu items.
2. GrubHub API
GrubHub is a web app that allows a user to search for food delivery options from local restaurants. Users can search by type of food to discover convenient local bites. The semi-open GrubHub API can be used by providers to update restaurant information such as addresses, hours, and cuisine types. The API can also be used to retrieve menu information from a database of 10,000+ restaurants.
3. Can I Eat It? Barcode API
Can I Eat It? is a social food and drink application for users to connect and share food products and nutritional information. Developers can enable applications to access data about over 80,000 food products with the Can I Eat It? Barcode API. The API supports product search by name, product search by barcode, basic product information, tasting notes, detailed nutritional data, allergen lists, vegan, vegetarian, and fairtrade status.
4. Chomp API
Chomp API provides access to nutritional data on over 500,000 food products. The Chomp API enables developers to programmatically access nutrition labels, ingredients, trace ingredients, allergen warnings, product images, barcodes, and more. The service provides a "Product List Builder" to generate a customized list of products that match inputted search terms. A customer could use this to retrieve data for all products in the United States that include cheese ingredients, organic products that include a nut allergen, plant-based products that include vitamin B6, etc.
5. USDA FoodData Central Databases API
The USDA FoodData Central API allows developers to incorporate nutrient and food component data into their websites and applications. The API provides access to five distinct data types: Foundation Foods, Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies 2013-2014, National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Legacy Release, USDA Global Branded Food Products Database, and Experimental Foods. This API used to be known as the USDA Food Composition Databases API.
6. BigOven Recipe API
BigOven is a social network that aims to make users better cooks. Users can query recipes, plan menus, and make shopping lists with the BigOven Recipe site. The BigOven Recipe API enables users to get 350,000+ recipes and hundreds of thousands of photos. This API gives developers and data scientists working on applications in the food-tech, health, grocery delivery, home automation field access to recipes at affordable prices. Search by title, ingredient, keyword, nutritional information (paid plan required) plus manage folders and grocery lists in the cloud.
7. Open Food Facts API
Open Food Facts API provides access to data and information on food products from around the world. Access extensive data on product ingredients, nutrition facts, allergens, additives, and search/filter by product or brand. This free and open API is JSON based and accessed over HTTP using product barcode information.
8. Kroger API
Kroger is a U.S. retail supermarket chain. The Kroger API provides access to data from Kroger retail supermarket stores and its subsidiaries. The API offers access to customer profiles, product catalogs, carts, and location-based information.
9. Edamam Food Database API
Edamam provides nutrition analysis tools and applications. The Edamam Food Database API can enable applications to find nutrition and diet data for generic foods, packaged foods, and restaurant meals. It uses Natural Language Processing to extract food entities from unstructured text. Use the API to search for a food by given nutrient quantity, brand, keyword, name or UPC/Barcode. It allows users to source nutrition facts for a given food, like macro and micronutrients, allergen labels and more.
10. BARZZ API
BARZZ.net is an online bar, restaurant and nightclub directory. The BARZZ API allows users to retrieve detailed bar and nightclub venue information including bar type, location, amenities, hours, daily specials, and more. Data is available for bars and venues in over 60 cities and regions across the USA and growing daily.