Alternatives to Foodgawker & Tastespotting for Food Photos?

If you are depressed by getting rejected by either Tastespotting or Foodgawker, did you know there are lots of other options for submitting your food photos?  In addition to all of the ones I’ll share with you in this post, John and I have one that’s not quite launched yet called  We are open to suggestions on ways to make it better.  We’re going to add likes and probably comments if people ask for them. Each photo links directly to the blog it came from and every blog has a complete gallery of its own.

If you’re a user of John’s EasyRecipe plugin, you’re already aware that just by ticking a box, every food photo you select as your recipe photo will be automatically added to within seconds of hitting the publish button.  We still have some final formatting to finish and a login so folks can save their favorites but it works just fine.  It does take a bit of moderating because unlike the other sites that must have approval of each photo, we accept everyone and then remove those photos we think don’t look fooderific.

looks like dog foodFor instance a facial scrub gets tossed out, food that looks like dogfood gets tossed out, photos with more text that food are out, just a pile of ingredients is out and photos that are out of focus are out too.  Most importantly, if it’s a stock photo and we catch it, it’s out too.  This is for food bloggers who take their own photos.  Fortunately, we haven’t had too many we’ve had to reject and we have over 60,000 photos so far.

Also is a great place to find photos for Pinterest as the photos are added within seconds of posting so new photos are up all the time 24/7. There’s a pinterest link on every photo that links back to the original post.  Some sites like RecipenewZ offers a Pinterest link but it links back to RecipenewZ not to the original recipe.  No value in that for me.

Here are alternatives for submitting your photos AND getting some good traffic back to your food blog:

I didn’t include sites that publish an entire recipe such as recipes2share or opensourcefood as that does no good at all for a food blog. There’s no reason to click to visit the original recipe.

Not sure how you feel but I have no desire to help a stranger earn money on my hard work. Everyone has their favorite food photos and here are some of mine.

Photos like this are my inspiration and what keeps me picking up my camera to practice. Each photo links to the original recipe.


Blackberry Cake

Blackberry Cake by Mama’s Gotta Bake



Lamb and Fennel Mint Salad

Lamb and Fennel Mint Salad from Salted and Styled



Breakfast Cheesecake Cupcakes

Breakfast Cheesecake Cupcakes from Handle the Heat



Smoky Park BBQ Sandwiches

Smoky Park BBQ Sandwiches by Taste and Tell


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  1. says

    Well, in the ideal life every food photo I take would be amazing, artistic, beautiful, mouth-watering… You know what? I don’t live an ideal life. My blog is a reflection of my daily life, which is busy, completely full of commitments and stress, and challenges. Blogging is a fun activity for me, that I don’t expect to bring me revenues or recognition, or fame. So, if I submit a photo to Tastespotting and it gets rejected for “composition”, so be it.

    I will just keep doing what I’m doing, the way I’m doing, and when I hit gold on Tastespotting, or Pinterest, I will be happy for a few minutes, and go on with my life :-)

  2. says

    I am so honored that you have one of my photos as inspiration. My photography has been a long and frustrating road, and I still struggle often, so to hear that I have inspired someone – I can’t tell you how happy that makes me. Thank you for making my night!

  3. says

    I think you should make this sentence bold: “There’s a pinterest link on every photo that links back to the original post.” This part is SO important for food bloggers, especially now Pinterest brings lots of traffic (unlike Tastespotting/Foodgawker type of sites, they can constantly bring traffic). Congrats on the new site, Fooderific! You two really know what you are doing, and feels great that you (and the site) are on our side. Good luck!

  4. says

    Congrats on your new food site… looking forward to checking it out. I bought a new camera… software and countless food photography books to try to get into foodgawker and tastespotting. It’s still hit or miss sometimes… Tastespotting is a pain in the butt! Urgh!

  5. says

    When I started out, I was rejected by those “big guns” that you mention. Truthfully, I made a pact with myself that I would never attempt to post one of my photo’s there again. I’m sure my photography has improved considerably since I first started blogging but it doesn’t change my mind. I like posting on Serious If they don’t use your photo they don’t send you a “loser” email – they just don’t publish it. Much kinder way of doing business. I’m going to check out all of your great suggestions. I think it’s so cool you guys develope your own plug-ins. Will be trying out when it’s up and running. Have a great weekend!

    • says

      that’s great, Eileen. I have a tough skin so rejection doesn’t bother me. I only submit my favorite photos to the big boys and if they don’t like them, their loss.

  6. says

    Fooderific sounds like fun! Any chance of opening it up to submissions in the future so those of us who aren’t using WordPress can submit photos? By submissions I mean not having to use a plug-in, but submitting the way you do for Tastespotting and Foodgawker. Speaking of those two, I find Tastespotting to be pretty consistent in what they like. It does take some thought to figure out their taste (you can get a good idea by looking at the first dozen or so pictures after they refresh the site – they definitely seem to put some of their faves on the top row). Foodgawker is more whimsical, and I think it depends in part on which person is on duty when you submit your photos. I really like both sites, though, and appreciate the opportunities they give us. But like Nami said, Pinterest is really where the traffic is these days. TS and FG certainly bring in traffic, but not to the same degree they did a couple of years ago – I think people are spending much more time looking at Pinterest.

  7. says

    Maureen: I am glad that you have the perspective and experience of a food blogger — what most of those sites don’t. There are so many pictures that Foodgawker and especially TasteSpotting reject daily (and should’t) and others that appear on their gallery that make me ask myself: Really??? I did not know about Fooderific but I’ll definitely check it out. I’ll check EasyRecipe plugin for sure.

  8. says

    Fooderific sounds like a great idea for a site, Maureen. How very creative of you. If the Foodie sites aren’t offering what you need, build you own! Thanks, too, for gathering and listing the names of the other sites. I can see I’ve got some investigating to do. :)

  9. says

    Thanks for including DessertStalking [which I own], Maureen! You can’t take it personally when a photo gets rejected – I own an aggregation site and the big guys still occasionally shoot me down too!

  10. says

    I still submit to FG and TS and am mostly successful with getting accepted BUT it was a long, hard road and truth is, I needed to get better. I still get irritated when every reject is the same especially when I am NOT over processing (the latest and greatest excuse!).

    I know most of the sites you mention and I’ve tried a few but another truth is that they bring such limited traffic it simply was not worth the time investment to submit. Did you notice FG has changed their site and their dimensions to 275X275…another reason I may stop there; it’s hard enough making images square but now their square is a different size than the other ones. OY OY OY!!!

    Great that you are doing this; I’m sure your users of Easy Recipe will love it!

    • says

      Thanks Barb, I wanted something that would automatically submit. It takes forever like you said. One is 275, one is 900×600, one is 250. Pain in the neck. :)

  11. says

    You guys never cease to amaze me you are so giving to the food blogging community. It was because of your encouragement that I stopped procrastinating and just got on with posts knowing/hoping that the photography and styling will come later. I love your “its their loss” attitude!

    • says

      well, it IS their loss :) You’ve got the right attitude. If you just DO it and know that every time you take out the camera you’ll get better, it will work.

  12. says

    Your John is such a hard worker! Good on him (and your good self) in getting the site to where it’s currently at. I’m glad you’re taking on Foodgawker and Tastespotting. While there is no fee to join these sites it does annoy me that they’re so inconsistent with their judging/approval process. Last week I had an image approved by FG and rejected by TS and another image accepted by TS but rejected by FG. WTF? If it’s a good image, both sites should be accepting it and if it’s a bad image, both sites should reject it. It just seems there’s no rule which makes it stressful and frustrating for those who are submitting to their sites xx

  13. says

    Hello Maureen, Fooderific sounds like fun! I have not even tried posting my recipe on other sites as hearing about some of the trials and tribulations that others have shared. However I do spend a great deal of time drooling on pintest and then happy to see when I like a recipe it is one of my foodie friends!!!! It really is such a small world. Looking forward to seeing your new site when you have it up and running. Best wishes. BAM

  14. says

    Thanks Maureen, for the info and the list. I’ve seen references to many of these in bits and pieces, checked out some, and nearly gone bonkers in the process of trying to figure out what is best for me. I look forward to the new site you’ve developed. :)

  15. says

    Hi Maureen – appreciate the list of links. I like the idea of an automatic upload, that’s the main reason I don’t submit much to the other sites, just the time involved to upload.

  16. says

    I didn’t know about your photo site, Maureen. I must check it out. The only ones I submit to are Foodgawker, tastespotting, tasteologie and RecipeNewZ because they bring in the most traffic. I have tried all the others but it takes so long to submit to them all that I have had to narrow it down to those four.
    Off to check out your site now.

  17. says

    Thanks for providing this resource, Maureen. What about Flickr? I’ve never tried that one. I tried Tastespotting once and felt intimated by their remarks saying they get thousands of photos a day to consider- so I thought “why bother?”

    • says

      We bother because the traffic from sites like that is usually pretty good. Your photos are lovely, you should give them all a try, even foodgawker and tastespotting.

  18. says

    Wow!!! They are delicious images!
    Good luck with the fooderific, I can’t wait for its full release!

    That is such a good list of places to register out blogs with, I am with you, if I have done the hard work I don’t submit my work to a third party to benefit from, I want the traffic on my site!

    • says

      It works fine right now. I use it every day but the rest of the toys aren’t on there yet. I’m glad you agree with me on sites that use our work and we get little in return.

    • says

      I know how you feel. Some are one size, some are another and it takes time to submit. I took all that into consideration when we were doing the “formulating” for Fooderific. We call it formulating but frankly it’s more like arguing. I want something and he says, “it’s a lot of work, are you sure you need that?” :)

    • says

      Great.. We only pick up the recipes from EasyRecpe plugin but it works with Ziplist too. Hopefully he’ll come up with a plugin that will pick up any formatted recipe but we’re not there yet :)

  19. says

    Congrats on the new site Maureen, you two are really creative :)
    I honestly stopped submitting pictures to tastespotting and only submit to foodgawker once a month or less. All that rejection is not good for one’s self esteme :)
    Thank you for the links to all the other sites and for the new blogs for me to explore :)

    • says

      I know what you mean. What gripes me is one of them accepts and the other says, “overexposed” or some other complaint. I just don’t bother any more.

  20. says

    Girl – You just don’t know when to stop! :) Thanks for all that you do to help the rest of us out, but don’t wear yourself out. Congratulation on your new site! I’ll be using it. Thanks for the list of alternatives to the big porn sites which really confuse me sometimes. They accept what I’m sure they’ll reject and vice versa. So confusing! Thanks again!!!

    • says

      I know what you mean! One photo was overexposed by one and underexposed by the other and I was left scratching my head. I think they just hit whichever button is closest to their finger sometimes.

  21. says

    You guys are the best. I really dig this idea, and I hope it’s WILDLY successful. I posted a link on my facebook page, in an effort to make that happen.

  22. says

    Hello Maureen,

    Appreciate if you can add A community for food bloggers and food lovers. With you can directly pin recipes from your website like Pinterest and with no wait your recipes will be published immediately without any editorial review. No need to crop or edit your recipe images.

    Happy Pinning!!!
    iPinRecipes Team

  23. says

    A little late in the game on this one but would you consider: for your list. Epulo offers a slightly different approach in that the user can post some (or all) of their recipe on the site itself (along with the standard photo and link to their site). There’s also the option of posting a recipe even if you don’t have a food blog.

    Many thanks,

  24. says

    Another alternative is Food Frenzy Digest, which provides a syndication feature for Food Bloggers. You can now have your food posts published automatically without the hassle of having to manually publish it yourself.

  25. says

    What a great idea! I am very new to blogging and taking photos, but even so, it is disheartening when I get rejected for what I think are flimsy reasons, and then when I look at other submissions, see similar “faults”. I know it shouldn’t matter, and that everything takes time, but I want my blog to be a success and it stings when I get rejected by the “top two”.

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