rewriting recipes question

6 replies
I am planning to write a recipes ebook to publish on kindle. I have a few doubts. Can existing recipes be rewritten without copyright issues. Also, should we give attribution for recipes?
#question #recipes #rewriting
  • Profile picture of the author lotsofsnow
    You have to ask a copyright lawyer about this.
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  • Profile picture of the author JRJWrites
    What you *could* do is contact the people who made the recipes and ask them if you can use them in your eBook (with attribution), and give him/her a free copy of the eBook.

    However, if all your eBook is is a collection of recipes found free on the Internet, then what's the point of someone buying it?
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  • Profile picture of the author Adie
    Obviously you can't just rewrite the recipes you found online. Recipes are developed by people who actually cooked the actual food. The best thing top do is to contact a cook/chef, pay him/her to have his/her recipes shared to you.
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  • Profile picture of the author onSubie
    The US Copyright office has a page specifically about that.

    U.S. Copyright Office - Recipes

    You can't copyright a list of ingredients for a recipe or any other formula.

    That's why Coke and Col Sanders keep theirs secret. They can't copyright their recipes.

    For publishing a recipe, the author's description, pictures, story, anecdote or anything else written by them may be copyright if it is considered expressive.

    Simple directions required to combine the ingredients are not. A paragraph about how the writer's mother made the dish every Christmas morning would be.

    Here is a big write-up about the issue from Open Source Cook.

    Recipes & Copyright Law | Open Source Cook

    Very detailed and more info in the blog comments.

    Mahlon
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    • Profile picture of the author TatiW3B
      Originally Posted by onSubie View Post

      The US Copyright office has a page specifically about that.

      U.S. Copyright Office - Recipes

      You can't copyright a list of ingredients for a recipe or any other formula.

      That's why Coke and Col Sanders keep theirs secret. They can't copyright their recipes.

      For publishing a recipe, the author's description, pictures, story, anecdote or anything else written by them may be copyright if it is considered expressive.

      Simple directions required to combine the ingredients are not. A paragraph about how the writer's mother made the dish every Christmas morning would be.

      Here is a big write-up about the issue from Open Source Cook.

      Recipes & Copyright Law | Open Source Cook

      Very detailed and more info in the blog comments.

      Mahlon
      Very interesting. Thanks for the links - I've got a friend who needs to see this before turning her recipes into a book.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Braybrooke
    Originally Posted by macmani View Post

    I am planning to write a recipes ebook to publish on kindle. I have a few doubts. Can existing recipes be rewritten without copyright issues. Also, should we give attribution for recipes?
    Put a twist on already existing recipes and make them your own? Change the name, some ingredients, cook a little differently. Originality is the name of the game when it comes to publishing but everybody 'borrows' from here and there.
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