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The Appetizer: The Official Blog of DiningIn

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8 Tips for Taking Better Food Photos on Instagram

best instagram filter for food
Credit: My Fit Foods in Dallas, MyFitFoods

Whether you're a successful restaurant owner or self-procclaimed lover of food, Instagram can help you create, edit and publish your very own food snapshots to your audience. 

Believe it or not, a hashtag search of #food will turn up over 82,000 photos at almost any given time.

And it's all because the social, image-sharing platform is designed to bring out your inner Jamie Oliver or April Bloomfield, allowing you to be inventive with all things food, a widely favoured Instagram theme, from your casual morning breakfast to special food-centered holidays.  

Fact: The Most Instagrammed Day of 2013 was the joint holiday celebration of Thanksgiving and Hannukah, or Thanksgivukkah, where potatoes latkes and turkeys collided for this once in a 77,000-year instance.  

Below, you'll see how our restaurant partners are doing it right with 8 tips for taking better food photos on instagram.  

All items pictured are available for delivery via

Tip 1: Presentation is Key

Whether you're cozing up with DiningIn food delivery or on a night out on the town, you can make your meal look presentable. Garnish it with chopped herbs, put a colorful side or two beside it, and wipe away any extra smudges on the plate.  

Though, keep in mind that even the most delicious dishes will never be "photogenic," as good as they might taste.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Red Lantern in Boston, RedLanternBos

Tip 2: Use the focus tool

Enhance your food by making it the focal point of the picture. It's likely that each scene will be different, so use this feature whenever necessary to have your subject, in this case, Ben and Jerry's Chocolate Therapy ice cream, pop out more while softly blurring out the background.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Ben and Jerry's in Boston, BenAndJerrys 

Tip 3: Try different angles

You may find that your appetizer can look even better from another angle, so take a few snaps to find the perfect one.  Remember to stay close enough to the plate when photographing slightly above or directly overhead the food.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Chicago q in Chicago, ChicagoQBBQ 

Tip 4: Show your ingredients

This is a great way to display the different colors and textures going into a dish. If it's an original recipe you want to share with fellow foodies, include a short ingredient list in the caption.  Just don't overwhelm your followers with too many hashtags.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Freshii in Dallas, Freshii

Tip 5: Slice it in half

The outside of a sandwich or pastry isn't nearly as interesting as the fillings.  Your followers want to see what's inside that beautiful creation, so cut in into 2 or more pieces, place them side-by-side or on top of each other, and get a good snapshot of it.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Little Market Brasserie in Chicago, LittleMarketBrasserie

Tip 6: Use a filter

Filters will help accentuate the colors of your dish, give it a warm glow, or a 60's retro look.  There's no one technique to choosing the best Instagram filter for food, so be sure to play around with it.  Some of the most popular filters are X-Pro II, Lo-fi, and Hefe.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Sunda New Asian in Chicago, @SundaChicago

Tip 7: Don't overuse the flash

Using the flash can the picture a bit making it look more appealing, but use it sparingly.  Most of the time, food looks much better in its natural lighting.

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Lovely Bake Shop in Chicago, GMLovely

Tip 8: Be creative

Make it interesting! Show your creative side, put together something unusual, contrast different colors, even keep the fries messy in the background. The choice is all yours.

And the amount of pictures you can post is limitless, but we recommend 1 or 2 per hour so you're not flooding your friends' feeds every few minutes. 

best instagram filter for food
Credit: Rockit Burger Bar in Chicago, RockitBurgerBar


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best instagram filter for food 


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