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Mealie is a self hosted recipe manager and meal planner (with a RestAPI backend and a reactive frontend application built in Vue for a pleasant user experience) for the whole family.

Easily add recipes into your database by providing the url1, and mealie will automatically import the relevant data or add a family recipe with the UI editor.

Mealie Screenshot

Mealie also provides a secure API for interactions from 3rd party applications.

Why does my recipe manager need an API?

An API allows integration into applications like Home Assistant that can act as notification engines to provide custom notifications based of Meal Plan data to remind you to defrost the chicken, marinade the steak, or start the CrockPot. See the official docs for more information. Additionally, you can access any available API from the backend server. To explore the API spin up your server and navigate to for interactive API documentation.

Mealie Requirements


Already deployed:



Setup data locations

First we create a directory to hold the data which mealie will serve:

mkdir /var/data/mealie

Create environment

There's only one environment variable currently required (db_type), but let's create an .env file anyway, to keep the recipe consistent and extensible.

mkdir /var/data/config/mealie
cat << EOF > /var/data/config/mealie/mealie.env

Mealie Docker Swarm config

Create a docker swarm config file in docker-compose syntax (v3), something like the example below:

Fast-track with premix! 🚀

I automatically and instantly share (with my sponsors) a private "premix" git repository, which includes necessary docker-compose and env files for all published recipes. This means that sponsors can launch any recipe with just a git pull and a docker stack deploy 👍.

🚀 Update: Premix now includes an ansible playbook, so that sponsors can deploy an entire stack + recipes, with a single ansible command! (more here)

version: "3.2" #

    image: hkotel/mealie:latest
    env_file: /var/data/config/mealie/mealie.env
      - /var/data/mealie:/app/data
      - /etc/localtime:/etc/localtime:ro
        # traefik
        - traefik.enable=true

        # traefikv1
        - traefik.port=9000
        - traefik.frontend.auth.forward.address=http://traefik-forward-auth:4181
        - traefik.frontend.auth.forward.authResponseHeaders=X-Forwarded-User
        - traefik.frontend.auth.forward.trustForwardHeader=true        

        # traefikv2
        - "traefik.http.routers.mealie.rule=Host(``)"
        - "traefik.http.routers.mealie.entrypoints=https"
        - ""
        - "traefik.http.routers.mealie.middlewares=forward-auth"

      - traefik_public

    external: true


Mealie is served!

Launch the mealie stack by running docker stack deploy mealie -c <path -to-docker-compose.yml>. The first time you access Mealie at https://YOUR FQDN, you might think there's something wrong. There are no recipes, and no instructions. Hover over the little plus sign at the bottom right, and within a second, two icons appear. Click the "link" icon to import a recipe from a URL:

Mealie Screenshot

Chef's notes 📓

  1. I scraped all these recipes from 

  2. If you plan to use Mealie for fancy things like an early-morning alarm to defrost the chicken, you may need to customize the Traefik Forward Auth rules, or even remove them entirely, for unauthenticated API access. 

  3. If you think Mealie is tasty, encourage the developer 🧑‍🍳 to keep on cookin', by sponsoring him ❤ 

Tip your waiter (sponsor) 👏

Did you receive excellent service? Want to compliment the chef? (..and support development of current and future recipes!) Sponsor me on Github / Ko-Fi / Patreon, or see the contribute page for more (free or paid) ways to say thank you! 👏

Employ your chef (engage) 🤝

Is this too much of a geeky PITA? Do you just want results, stat? I do this for a living - I'm a full-time Kubernetes contractor, providing consulting and engineering expertise to businesses needing short-term, short-notice support in the cloud-native space, including AWS/Azure/GKE, Kubernetes, CI/CD and automation.

Learn more about working with me here.

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