Create a recipe or sub recipe – Overview


This article steps you through how to create a recipe or sub recipe. This article is also available as a video tutorial, click to play below. 

Video Tutorial

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In Nutrition Labelling, recipe and sub recipe resources are the same, but have different purposes. Create sub recipes for your in-house recipes that you use as ingredients in final recipes. Create recipes for your final products for which you are producing nutrition labels. 

Sub recipe Screenshot_2023-01-04_at_8.53.02_am.png Use for your in-house sub recipes that are used as ingredients in your final products.
Recipe Screenshot_2023-01-04_at_8.54.08_am.png Use for your final products for which you want to generate nutrition labels.

For recipes and sub recipes, Foodworks calculates their nutrient information using the ingredients you enter by default. Once created, like other resources, the recipe/sub-recipe appears in the navigation pane. 

Information for a recipe or sub recipe

The basic information you need to create a recipe or sub recipe includes:

  • Ingredients and their quantities
    Draw the ingredients from the raw materials and sub recipes in the workspace. In general, it is good practice to create your ingredients before creating your recipes.

  • Serve information
    Enter either the serve weight or the number of serves.
  • Yield information
    Enter either the percentage yield or the final weight.
  • Declaration type
    The type of recipe affects the information you need to provide and how the recipe is declared on your labels. 

Other information you can enter includes:

  • Health Star Ratings category for the recipe, where applicable.
  • Retention factors for ingredients, where applicable.
  • Nutrition information that overrides the calculations from ingredients.
  • Method instructions.
  • Labelling specifications.

Create a recipe or sub recipe

To create a new recipe or sub recipe:

  1. Open or create a workspace.
  2. On the sidebar, click Resources.
  3. In the navigation pane, click New and select Sub recipe or Recipe.
  4. On the General tab, enter the name for the recipe or sub recipe. If you wish to use a different name on the product label, enter an alternative name on the Labelling tab.
  5. Click Save

To complete entering data for the recipe or sub recipe, click each of its tabs in turn (General, Ingredients, Method, Overrides, Measures, Labelling), and work through the fields from top to bottom.

Enter information on the General tab

To enter the general information for the recipe or sub recipe:

    1. Click the General tab.
    2. From the Label declaration dropdown, select the type of label declaration for the recipe.
      By default, Sub recipe or recipe is selected for you.
    3. If you are using Health Star Ratings on the label for this recipe, select the HSR/NSPC category.
    4. Enter optional information as desired. See Optional fields below.
    5. Click Save.

Optional fields

The optional fields on the General tab are:

  • ID – Assign a searchable ID number.
  • ID 2 – Assign an alternative searchable ID.
  • Tags – To add a tag(s) for organising and searching for this resource, hover over the field, and click Add resource tag.
  • Description – Add a description of your recipe or sub recipe.
  • Notes – Add notes about the recipe or sub recipe. 

Add the ingredients

To add the recipe ingredients:

  1. Click the Ingredients tab.
  2. Click the empty ingredient row and begin typing to search for your first ingredient.
  3. To select an ingredient from the list, use the mouse to click the ingredient (or use the arrow keys to highlight the ingredient and then press Enter).
  4. Enter the amount of the ingredient as a number and a unit, for example, 1 cup. Select the unit of measurement from the dropdown list and press Enter
  5. Optional: Make a note about the ingredient. 
  6. Repeat these steps until all your ingredients are entered.
  7. Click Save.


Optionally, you can group ingredients in your recipe into sections. For example, a cake recipe might have a Cake, a Filling and an Icing section. See Add or edit sections for ingredient.

Set retention factors for the ingredients

Nutritional changes can occur during the cooking process. To reflect these changes in the recipe analyses, set a Retention Factor for affected ingredients.

To set retention factors for ingredients:

  1. On the Ingredients tab, point to the first ingredient and click the  Ellipsis button that appears.
  2. Select Set Retention Factor.
  3. In the Select Retention Factor Group box, search for and select a food similar to this ingredient on which to base your retention factors.
  4. In the Select Cooking Process box, choose from the list of cooking methods.
  5. To move to the next ingredient in your recipe, click Next ingredient, and set the appropriate retention factor.
  6. Repeat as required. 
  7. When you have finished applying retention factors, select Apply.
  8. Click Save.

Retention factors you've set are shown beside the ingredient, as shown here:



Setting retention factors for ingredients accounts for vitamin, mineral and alcohol loss during cooking. When an ingredient is used in a very small quantity you can often ignore it.

Set the serves

You can set serves either as a number of serves or as the weight of one serve.

To enter the serve information for the recipe:

  1. On the Ingredients tab, select Number of serves or Serve weight (g).
  2. Enter the number of serves or the grams per serve, as required.
  3. Click Save.


Setting the serve information enables you to view the nutritional analyses per serve in the analysis pane. You can set more serve information on the Labelling tab.

Set the yield

To ensure an accurate analysis per 100g for a cooked recipe, set the recipe's yield. You can set the yield using either a yield percentage or a final weight of the cooked recipe.

If you do not know the raw weight to calculate the percentage, you can toggle the Yield button to say Final Weight and enter the weight of the cooked recipe. Foodworks does the same calculation but uses the tally of entered ingredient amounts as the raw weight in the calculation.

To enter the recipe's yield:

  1. On the Ingredients tab, select Yield (%) or Final weight (g).
  2. Enter the number for the percentage or the weight in grams, as required.
  3. Click Save.


  • Yield (%) describes the percentage weight change that occurs during the cooking process.
    For example: If raw weight = 1810g and the final weight =1665.2 then the Yield (%) (or moisture change) for the recipe = 92% (1665.2/1810) Entering the yield changes the nutritional analyses slightly to reflect water and alcohol losses during cooking.
  • Setting the yield adjusts the total weight, water and alcohol values. In turn, this changes the concentration of other nutrients. 

Add the method (optional)

To enter the recipe's method:

  1. Click the Method tab.
  2. Enter the instructions.
  3. Click Save.


The text you enter on the Method tab does not affect the recipe nutritional analysis. To account for the nutritional changes that occur during cooking use Yield and Retention Factors.

Override the calculated nutritional results

By default, the nutritional analyses for your recipe are calculated from the ingredient and yield information.

For a recipe it is rare that you would override the analyses calculated from its ingredients, so you can often skip the Overrides tab.

However, in some cases you might choose to override the calculated results for certain nutrients, or for country of origin, health star ratings, and warning, advisory and allergen statements. For more information, see Enter or edit nutrient overrides for a recipe.

Set the attributes for this recipe (optional)

On the Overrides tab you can mark the recipe with attributes such as vegan friendly and halal

Add common measures

You can add your own common measures to your recipe, such as slice or leaf. 

Then when you use this recipe as an ingredient in a sub recipe or recipe you'll have the option to use the common measures you've created. (If you do not add common measures, you'll have the standard options available such as g, kg, serve.)

To set common measures for the recipe:

  1. On the Measures tab, enter the name of the common measure.
  2. Enter the corresponding weight in grams.
  3. Optional: Enter a description of the measure.
  4. Click Save.


Other options for measures include:

  • Default measure – Select this box to make this common measure the default (or first) response in other recipes or food records where this recipe is used as an ingredient or food.
  • Copy measures from – Click Copy measures, then use the search box to find a similar food or recipe to base your common measures on.

Enable volume measures for a recipe

You can enable volume measures (e.g. cup, mL and L) for a recipe. This is especially helpful if the recipe is a liquid.

Then when you use this recipe as an ingredient in a sub recipe or recipe you can use volume measures to enter the quantity.

To do this, you determine the Volume Conversion Factor (VCF) by entering how much a certain volume of this recipe weighs.

If you also select the Liquid checkbox, the analyses for the recipe are also shown per 100mL.

To enable volume measures:

  1. On the Measures tab, enter the number of millilitres (mL) and its accompanying weight in grams (g). For example, in the Volume cell enter 100mL = 115g
  2. Select the Liquid checkbox if you wish to show the analyses per 100mL. 
  3. Click Save.

Set the label details

For more information on specifying the label for the recipe on the Labelling tab, see Design a label for a recipe or sub recipe – Overview

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