Free Baking, Cooking, and Other Recipe Contests to Enter in 2016/2017

Current Food Contests, Baking Contests, and Cooking Contests to Enter

Image of a recipe book and ingredients, illustrating's Recipe Contest List.
Put your cooking skills to work by entering recipe contests. Image © David Franklin / Getty Images.

Recipe contests reward you with big prizes for using your cooking skills to come up with great new recipes. If you're looking for the best current baking contests, cooking contests, and other food contests to enter right now, here's where to find them. Scroll down for the latest recipe contests; but first, some tips:

How to Come Up with Original Recipes:

So how do come up with recipes that are truly unique? Inspiration is all around you. If you are looking for a great place to start, read How to Create Mouth-Watering, Contest-Winning Recipes.

How original do recipes have to be? Can you use recipes from cookbooks or websites without violating copyright laws? Some important ideas to keep in mind:

  • According to American copyright law, lists of ingredients or general methods of cooking are not protected by copyright. However, the cooking instructions or other text involving the recipe (such as a description of the finished dish or a history of where the recipe originated) are subject to copyright laws.
  • Entire cookbooks are also protected by copyright.
  • Ethically, copying a recipe and claiming it as your own is wrong. Furthermore, contest rules may stipulate that your recipe must be unpublished. To make the dish your own, and to make it eligible to enter recipe contests, make substantial changes to the dish. Of course, very simple recipes like a plain grilled cheese or hot dog are universal enough that they don't need attribution.
  • Some recipe contests may have stricter regulations than others. For example, the Pillsbury Bake-Off, which awards over $1 million in prizes, searches for highly original entries. Derivative recipes will not be chosen to compete.

To sum up: never submit a recipe contest entry that you've copied from someone else. Use other people's recipes only as inspiration, then add your own unique twists to improve your chances of winning and to avoid legal problems.

For even more great advice on how to enter cooking contests and come out a winner, be sure to follow my expert tips on How to Win Recipe Contests.

Current Recipe Contests to Enter and Win:


1. Taste of Home - Get Grilling Recipe Contest
Submit your best barbecue recipes and you could win one of five cash prizes valued between $50 and $500 or free books.
Entry Frequency: Unlimited entry per person
End Date: August 31st, 2021
Eligibility: Open to the U.S. and Canada (void in PQ)
More Information about this Sweepstakes
Enter Sweepstakes Directly