Case Studies: Recipes

Page 1 Ranking on Google SERP for Recipes

Using SEO content marketing to rank on Page 1 of Google searches alongside the most popular food websites, blogs, vlogs, and TV shows.

The Challenge

Ranking high on Google for recipes and food articles isn’t easy, especially for a website that isn’t entirely within the food niche. You have to compete against all the food bloggers, websites, and YouTube.

So how can you rank organically on Page 1 of a Google search — or even at Number 1?

To find out, I created original recipes, food-related blog posts, and a meal planning quiz. Then I applied my SEO content marketing success formula. I did not spend any money on ads.

My Approach

I crafted two types of cooking posts: single recipe posts, using recipes I created; and roundup posts in which I curated and reviewed single recipes by food bloggers and food websites.

I concentrated on creating the same quality content and photography as national food websites. I also created an online meal planning quiz as a standalone post.

Before producing these, I did intense SEO keyword research; gathered social sharing data; created competitor analysis; and identified food bloggers who might share my posts with their social media followers.

Single original recipe posts

1. “Marble Cake Loaf Recipe with Low Fat Yogurt”
2. “Easy Blackberry Pudding Recipe”

For these single, original recipe posts, I identified specific long tail keywords I wanted to rank on Page 1 for.

I analyzed the competition for word length and keyword density, and crafted and prepared original recipes, which I photographed in my studio. After I produced the posts, I carefully crafted SEO based on my research.

2. Roundup of recipes

“15 of the Best Curry Recipes from Around the World”
For the roundup review post, I focused on using the word “best” in the title. Using SEO tools, I identified which recipes in general were the most shared on Pinterest and Facebook. I narrowed down my keywords and selected the most shared articles, then confirmed the number of shares.

Next I reached out to bloggers and asked permission to use their photos. I wrote an original review of each blogger’s recipe and included a photo and link to the recipe.

To promote my posts, I reached out again to food bloggers mentioned in the posts, and I posted the article on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

3. Meal planning quiz

Using online quiz software, I created a quiz tailored to helping readers understand which type of meal plan suits their lifestyle best. Around it I created an article that informs readers why meal planning is a good idea. This is titled “Meal Planning Makes Cooking Easier. Take the Quiz!”

I promoted this mainly by posting it within social media communities centered around food.


I ranked at #1 on Page 1 of Google searches organically for these long tail keywords:

  • best curry

    Ranked #1 out of 19.8M results

  • best curry recipe

    Ranked #1 out of 5.33M results

  • low fat marble cake

    Ranked #1 out of 5.14M results

I ranked organically on Page 1 on Google searches for these keywords:

  • meal planning quiz

    Ranked #2 out of 1.56M results

  • blackberry pudding

    Ranked #7 out of 825K results

  • blackberry pudding recipes

    Ranked #7 out of 584k result