"Get inspiration & dinner suggestions."
I’m pretty sure that anyone who cooks on a regular basis gets stuck once in a while and is left wondering what to have for dinner. The same problem also appears to those who can’t cook (such as myself, but it’s not a good idea for me to expand on this subject considering my culinary knowledge, or its lack thereof) since they still have to figure out what to eat each day. Well then, DinnerWiz has the solution! This free little app will help you create a weekly menu that you can follow each day or get ideas from. Let’s get cooking, shall we?
Don’t worry about the installation procedure as it is very easy and finishes quickly. You won’t see any advanced settings throughout the whole process so be confident and click “Next” in every step without worrying of the consequences. No malicious stuff is bundled with the setup package.
There are no special requirements for the program to work, apart from a working computer running Windows.
When you run DinnerWiz for the first time you will be introduced with a polite message that asks you to read the Help file before using the program in order to make sure how the program works first. The Help file will open immediately after dismissing the message; it’s not long, so do take a few minutes from your time and read it. When you close the Help file, you will finally be able to check out the main interface, which looks exactly like an elegant menu that you would find in a prestigious restaurant. At first it is empty, but clicking on the “Menu” button that appears at the top will fill it with 7 dishes (one for each day of the week). Everytime you click on “Menu”, a different weekly menu is generated.
At the bottom of the window you can see 4 helpful links: Setup, Help, Print and Donate.
Just the fact that your computer picks your dinner for you should be enough. Seriously, it’s such a simple and nice idea that it’s amazing. By default there are many foods included in the “dishes database”, but you can add even more by clicking on the “Setup” link at the bottom left corner. A window will open with a list of all the available dishes and the most suitable days to be eaten. You can edit the properties of any dish, as well as add your own or remove existing ones.
Back to the main screen again, clicking on one of the dishes shown will mark it and keep it in the next generated menu. So if you want to partially change the week’s menu, mark the foods you want to keep and then click on the “Menu” link.
If you’re not the only one living in the house (but you’re in charge of cooking) then you can easily print the created menu and place it on the table, kitchen, fridge, bathroom (?) so that everyone can see it. Worst-case scenario: it ends up as toilet paper. Not that bad, especially if you’re the one using it.
The only con about this program is that you cannot rearrange the order of the dishes in a weekly menu. That makes it quite difficult to create a menu of your own, although one solution is to temporarily disable all unwanted foods (uncheck all suitable days from them) and only check the particular days you want your dishes to appear. Kind of time-consuming if you have a lot of dishes, so hopefully a newer version supports dish rearrangement.
The Dinner Solution (paid) is an alternative to DinnerWiz, a bit more complex and with ore features. It doesn’t help you create a weekly menu, but rather a monthly one. It also gives you the ability to edit the recipe for each meal, add desserts, appetizers, make a grocery list and in general allow you to save any sort of information regarding meals.
This is a lovable piece of software that will never, ever frustrate you. You can use it for so many occasions that it’s practically one of the most useful programs that the average computer user/university student/couple/mom can have.
What's new in this version: Complete rewrite with new pretty interface, print functions etc
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