Mela Help

This page should cover most of the questions regarding how to use Mela. Don't find what you're looking for? Not in the FAQ? Feel free to ask via email.

  1. Adding Recipes to Mela
  2. Editing Recipes
  3. Cook Mode
  4. Feeds
  5. Groceries
  6. Sync
  7. FAQ
  8. Privacy Policy

Adding Recipes to Mela

  1. In-app browser: Search for recipes using the in-app browser. Mela will show you a preview of the recipe if it detects one on the currently viewed page. On the Mac and iPad, this preview is shown on the same screen. On the iPhone, a button named Found Recipe will be displayed, just tap on it or swipe left to view the recipe.
    To add the recipe to your personal collection, just tap on Add this Recipe.
  2. Scan: Scan a page from a cookbook using the camera of your iOS device (this also works when using the Mac version of Mela which allows you to, for example, use your iPhone camera for scanning). Tap and drag on the scanned document to choose text blocks you want to import. Although Mela will try to guess the type of the text you've selected (title, ingredients, etc.), make sure to check that the correct text type is selected for all text blocks.
  3. Feeds: Recipes from Feeds are not automatically added to your personal collection. Just tap on + or Add this Recipe if there's a recipe you want to add. See Feeds for more info on how to setup feeds.
  4. Share extension: Mela comes with its own share extension. All it needs is a link to site containing a recipe. Invoking the share sheet or menu on a link or website will give you the option to view the recipe in Mela's native recipe viewer. Just tap on Add to Mela to add the recipe to your personal collection.
  5. Import: Mela can import melarecipes and paprikarecipes files. Please note that Mela's feature set does not exactly match Paprika's. Although Mela can import recipes from Paprika, it does not recoginze/support links to other recipes or images which are embedded in text.
  6. Manually: Of course, you can always add a recipe by entering all details manually.

Editing Recipes

  1. Images: You can add multiple images from various sources to every recipe. The first image is always the main image that will also be used for printing or to display thumbnails in the recipe list .
  2. Categories: Categories can be added or removed in the recipe editor. Also, to create a new category, just add its name to the categories field while editing a recipe.
  3. Ingredients: When editing ingredients, Mela will parse the text you enter and automatically recognize the amount and unit for every ingredients entry. Supported languages for units currently are English, German, Italian and French.
    You can group your ingredients by adding titles. This is done by starting the line with #. To add a comment to an ingredients entry, just append it in parantheses. Note, comments are only recognized if they're at the end of a line. Examples:
    # GroupGroup
    Ingredient (comment) → Ingredient comment
  4. Instructions: Instruction paragraphs will automatically be numbered. As with ingredients, you can also group your instructions by adding titles. Adding a title will also reset the paragraph numbering. Mela supports a small subset of Markdown for text formatting:
    # TitleTitle
    ***bold italic***bold italic

Cook Mode

  1. Mela comes with a cook mode which is a full-screen view only showing you the cooking steps and ingredients. It uses a larger font so it stays readable even when you're not right in front of your device. On devices with a keyboard, you can use the Space or keys to focus on the next step (or Shift-Space or to go back one step). Also, on the ingredients list, you can check off entries you have added/processed and don't need to keep track of anymore.


  1. With Mela, you can subscribe to RSS feeds of your favorite recipe blogs. However, this will only work for sites that offer an RSS feed with articles that link to pages which contain recipes that Mela can extract. That said, most blogs should work but what probably won't work are all the sites with large recipe collections (as these usually do not offer an RSS feed).
    Also, please note, Mela will always ignore blog entries if it can't extract a recipe. So, if you've added a feed and no recipes are showing up, this probably means that Mela wasn't able to find any on the linked articles.
  2. To add a feed, just go to Feeds, then tap on the + button (••• on the iPhone). You can either enter the URL of the actual feed or just provide the domain and let Mela search for available feeds on this site.


  1. Mela uses to store and manage your grocery list. By default, it uses a list called Mela (and creates one if it doesn't exist). You can always choose another list for Mela to use (see Settings/Preferences → Groceries). For example, you might want to use a list that you're sharing with other members of the household.


  1. Mela by default syncs with iCloud. If you really do not want this, you can disable it in Settings/Preferences → Sync. It is however recommended to enable iCloud Sync as this will also ensure that your data is not only stored locally and can be recovered in case something goes wrong with your device.
  2. The iCloud storage used for syncing counts against your storage limit. That said, please make sure you have enough space available on iCloud to ensure your data is always synced.


  1. Does Mela support sharing a recipe collection with multiple iCloud accounts?

    No, that's currently not supported. This might be added in a future update if I can get it working reliably.

  2. Mela does not find a recipe on a website even if there's one.

    Although Mela's recipe extractor should work on most sites, there are cases where it fails. Mela for now depends on the sites supporting this by providing the needed data.

Privacy Policy

  1. Mela does not collect any data. If iCloud Sync is enabled, your data is stored securely in a private container in your iCloud account. Mela does not depend on or use any third-party service.