5 best alternatives to Patreon for food creators

Patreon allows creators to monetize their content by charging members (aka patrons) a subscription fee to access their work.

That’s great but by their own veiled admission, Patreon is not designed for food or nutrition content like recipes, meal guides, macros, and shopping lists.

Just look at the suggested categories on their search page – it’s art, music, games, writing, etc.

So, what are the best alternatives to Patreon for food creators?

In this article, we explore the 5 membership site platforms that we think are best for monetizing your food content and the reasons why.

Let’s dive in.

Member Kitchens: the membership platform for food creators

We may be biased but we think Member Kitchens is the best alternative to Patreon for food creators. Why?

It was created with food creators for food creators!

With Member Kitchens, you can repurpose your existing recipes, cooking videos, and other foodie content to create a fully functioning membership site, with features like:

Ad-free recipe catalogs – import your recipes and create searchable, ad-free recipe catalogs. Your members can then search, filter, and favorite your recipes.

Customizable meal guides and meal plans – your members can customize plans that you create (e.g. adjust servings, swap recipes) or make their own.

…complete with auto-generating shopping lists.

Activity feed – so you can share important updates with your membership, like publishing new recipes, promoting your cookbook, a live event, and much more.

Plus all the tools you need to promote and grow your membership, like a sales page builder, subscriptions (using Stripe), and even a mobile app upgrade option.

MemberPress: the “all-in-one” membership plugin for WordPress

MemberPress is a popular option if you want to host a membership on your WordPress site.

Like Member Kitchens, MemberPress can be used to create ad-free experiences, gated content (behind a paywall), and more, using the content you already have.

Here’s how 40 Aprons used MemberPress for their foodie membership site:

The main downside of MemberPress, so I’m told, is that it can be difficult to set up and maintain.

Also, if you monetize your blog through ads, and sitespeed is important, then you may want to minimize the number of plugins on your WordPress site.

Memberful: membership software for independent creators, publishers, and more

Memberful is another popular option for WordPress users although you can also use it as a standalone thing using their built-in website builder.

Whereas Patreon memberships operate under the Patreon brand, Memberful (like Member Kitchens and MemberPress) allow you to create a membership with your brand.

You can also use it to power your community, podcast membership, and more.

Like Molly Baz, who uses Memberful to power their foodie membership with things like weekly recipe drops, giveaways, and events.

Depending on what you need, however, Memberful does have drawbacks. Such as the lack of food and nutrition-specific tools, like adjustable recipe servings, and nutritional information for recipes.

Instagram Subscriptions: offer exclusive content to your most engaged followers

Instagram (Meta) are rolling out their own subscriptions feature, which will allow you to charge your followers for access to exclusive posts, earn badges, and more.

The main benefit is that it’s all on one platform, however, that can also be a drawback if you don’t want to limit your membership (or your business) to a platform that you have limited control over.

Another major drawback is that Apple and Google will take a hefty chunk (30%) of your subscription income and that is before Instagram takes their cut on top (from 2024).

It also might not be available in your region yet.

Kajabi: the "all-in-one" course creator

All-in-one platforms like Kajabi offer another alternative to Patreon for membership sites (Podia is another popular option, and Thinkific).

These membership site platforms are feature rich and mostly easy to use.

The major drawback, however, is the lack of food and nutrition-specific features. For example, the content pages are not designed for recipe content (it’s just static text).

There are limited options for sharing content like meal guides too – I’ve spoken with countless food bloggers who ended up with a mountain of PDFs before realizing they need a purpose-built solution, like Member Kitchens.

Best alternative to Patreon for food creators: the verdict

In this article, we’ve discussed a number of alternatives to Patreon for food creators.

The right answer will ultimately depend on what you need, however, we think Member Kitchens is the best option for memberships based around your food content and diet advice.

I hope you found this article useful. If you have questions, then get in touch today.

Frequently asked questions

What is the best alternatives to Patreon for donations?

Buy Me a Coffee is a popular alternative to Patreon for donations, which allows your fans and supporters to gift you money (donations). Ko-Fi is another popular alternative, which allows you to sell products, set up monthly subscriptions, and more too.

What is Patreon’s pricing?

Patreon have two pricing plans. Patreon Pro charges 8% of the income you earn on Patreon whereas Premium charges 12% of your income. In return for the higher fee, you get access to more tools with Premium.