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Roasted Dinner

Minus the risk of getting grease on your laptop screen, cooking from food blog recipes is awesome. But according to a new study, we should reconsider logging onto our favorite sites and heading into the kitchen.

A recent study analyzed the nutritional content of 96 entrée recipes from six well-liked recipe websites, including super-popular blogs such as Smitten Kitchen, The Pioneer Woman, and Chocolate and Zucchini. The researchers found that many of the main dishes had as much saturated fat and sodium as restaurant meals, which might surprise those who assume home-cooked dinners are healthier overall (whether or not that’s actually accurate).

Before deleting those browser bookmarks and swearing off food blogs, let’s take a step back. In several interviews regarding the study, the lead researcher has critiqued bloggers for failing to educate their readers on proper nutrition. But none of the blogs are marketed as sources for healthy recipes. The opposite is more often true — the blogger behind Smitten Kitchen doesn’t hide her love of cakes and sweets, and The Pioneer Woman is famous for her hearty comfort food dishes.

Are bloggers duty-bound to instruct readers on nutrition? From the researchers’ perspective, it seems the answer is “yes.” Perhaps that’s because millennials who cook at home (and read these blogs) tend to be more focused on health and nutrition than previous generations. So it makes sense that they expect (and even demand) healthy recipes. But maybe that’s not fair to the food bloggers, who likely never signed up to play nutritionist to strangers on the Internet.

Weigh in with your opinion in the poll below (or get in touch with the author on Twitter @SophBreene)!