Despite Google's ever-changing algorithm, SEO for food blogging is still an important part of getting your food blog noticed. And, to do that well, you need to understand food blog keyword research and SEO keywords for food blogs.

This might sound like a lot but don't worry. I'll walk you through 9 easy-to-follow tips and strategies to help you find SEO keywords for your food blog.

I'll start with food blog keyword research basics. Then, I'll move on to some savvy techniques for finding SEO keywords for food blogs that bring more food lovers to your blog.

Ready to work your recipe posts into the keyword rankings? Let's go!

What is keyword research?

At its core, keyword research is like being a detective in the world of online search.

You uncover words and phrases that people are typing into search engines like Google. Let's say you start a health food blog.

Keyword research for food bloggers is to find the terms and phrases people use to find recipes, cooking tips, or food inspiration. For example, quick and healthy dinners.

screen shot of a Google search

Why is food blog keyword research important?

Doing keyword research means you're mixing in the right stuff to make your post delicious for your audience and search engines. The result?

You have the power to:

  1. Serve the right audience: Keyword research helps you understand what your audience is searching for so you can create content they want.
  2. Boost your blog: Using the right keywords makes your blog more visible in search engine results. That means more people clicking through to your content!
  3. Speak Google's language: The job of a search engine is to serve the most relevant dishes (results) to their users. And with the right keywords, you tell search engines your blog’s recipes are exactly what people want.

How do you do food blog keyword research?

Now that you know the ‘what' and ‘why' of keyword research, you might wonder, “How do I begin?”

Don't worry. I'll walk through it.

1. Understand your niche and audience

Before diving into the sea of keywords, the first step is understanding your niche and audience.

Are you a vegan dessert expert? A connoisseur of quick family dinners? Or maybe a master of exotic cuisines?

Pinpointing your blog’s theme tunes your keyword research to match what people are searching for. That way, you're not just throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks!

Here are some ways for you to get to know your audience and snag keyword ideas:

  • Check comments and feedback: Skim through comments and social media. Look for recipe requests or cooking pain points. What are people asking for? What problems could you help them solve?
  • Peek at other food blogs: See what's trending in your niche. What topics are other food bloggers covering? And be on the lookout for content gaps to fill!
  • Use social media polls and surveys: Ask your audience what they want to see more of, then give it to them! People love feeling like they're being listened to.

2. Cook up broad keyword search terms

Now that you've got a clear picture of your niche, it's time to start mixing up those broad keyword ideas.

So, how do you find keywords?

Start with simple searches. Pop terms like quick vegan meals or Italian pasta recipes into Google. Then, watch what Google suggests as you type. These often tell you what people are searching for.

Google autocomplete predictions

There are other simple tools out there to get you started, like Google Trends and Answer The Public.

In your keyword kitchen, think of Google Trends as your go-to for checking what's in culinary fashion. It's great for spotting what's on the rise. Like the current craze for keto recipes or the seasonal pop of all things pumpkin-spiced.

An example showing how to use Goole Trends for food blog keyword research

On the other hand, Answer The Public acts like a hotline to your readers' most pressing questions.

You type in a phrase, and it shows common questions and topics your readers are searching for. Let's take a look at the example below on How to make gluten-free bread.

An example showing how to use Answer the Public for food blog keyword research

This snapshot is an overall look at the different interests on a topic. From your phrase, it breaks everything down. From basics to specifics like, Is it cheaper to make your own gluten-free bread?

And now you have keyword options, or at least more ideas, for your content!

And the best parts? All of these tools are free!

3. Use keyword research tools

You need to research keywords for your blog, but you don't want it to be a guessing game.

Using the right tools to get accurate and valuable data takes the guessing out of it. And when you want to improve your food blog SEO and keyword research, that's exactly what you want. But there are many different tools out there, so where do you begin?

That part is up to you! But the keyword research tools we swear by are:

  • Google Keyword Planner
  • Semrush
  • Ahrefs

Think of Google keyword planner as your essential measuring cup.

It helps gauge the search volume (popularity) of your keywords. That way, you have an idea of how many people are searching for these terms.

Google Keyword Planner

Adding terms above, like healthy pasta, helps you measure popularity and gives you a clear idea of how many people are looking for this!

With Google keyword planner, you can look through related terms like healthy noodles or healthy salmon pasta. Plus, see how often they're being searched and how stiff the competition is.

Next up, Semrush. It's the high-precision food processor in your digital kitchen. It analyzes keyword trends and volumes and also chops through the competition.

An example showing Semrush as a tool for food blog keyword search.

Take best pizza type as an example. Semrush shows how often something is searched and how you stack up against other experts. It gives a clear view of the competition, revealing other ranking keywords.

And lastly, Ahrefs.

Dive deep into keyword ideas, variations, and long-tail phrases (more on these soon!). Plus, you can track how keywords perform over time, so you know which of your posts are adored most.

Ahrefs keyword dashboard

Based on our example, cherry pie recipe is a tough keyword to rank for. But it helps you find the sweet spot for your SEO recipe!

4. Check out the competition's recipe

Keeping an eye on what others are cooking up is a secret ingredient to your success.

Do not. I repeat. Do not copy the recipe or content straight from someone else.

That's a no-no!

Respect your fellow recipe developers. Use them as a guide or a reference. It's about understanding what they're serving up and how you can add your own twist to stand out.

So, how can you do this?

Take a look at the keywords top food bloggers in your niche are using. How are they seasoning their content? Are there certain phrases or topics that really resonate with their audience?

Pay attention to how they put these keywords in their content. Notice the titles, headings, and the overall structure of their posts.

Then think…are there certain areas or topics they aren’t covering?

Maybe there’s a rising food trend or a specific cuisine that hasn’t been explored much! This is your chance to take advantage of it! Offer something different: a dish with a story and style only your blog serves.

5. Add a dash of long-tail keywords

Long-tail keywords are like those unique spices that give your dish a distinct edge. They really boost your blog's organic traffic.

But how?

Well, for one, they're specific, less competitive phrases. And these keywords are often used by people who are looking for exactly what you have. So this makes it easier for your people to find your blog in the search results.

an example of a long tail keyword with low volume search

Think about terms that are very specific to your content. Maybe it's something like an easy and healthy pizza dough recipe. A phrase like this may have a lower overall search volume, but it's gold for attracting a loyal and relevant audience.

Once you have your longtail keywords, work them in them naturally through your content!

6. Check for search intent

It's all about why people search for certain keywords. Whether it's for quick recipes, how-tos, or product reviews.

And we get it. You aren't a mind reader. But there are ways to figure out what your audience is looking for.

First, identify the purpose. Think about where searches like breakfast ideas for picky eaters stemmed from. Are users looking for quick recipes or detailed guides?

Then, take a look at the top articles.

Review the types of articles ranking for your keywords. Are they how-to articles, roundups, or listicles? This helps you decide the best content format for your post and audience.

Then, give the people what they want!

7. Sprinkle keywords throughout your content (naturally!)

Adding keywords to your food blog should be as natural as adding herbs to a dish. Add enough to enhance, not overpower.

Here are some top spots to add keywords to your posts:

  • Titles and headings: Add keywords to your titles and headings. They should tempt readers with the aroma of a delicious meal.
  • Throughout your content: Put keywords thoughtfully within your blog posts. Imagine them as ingredients that should be mixed in evenly and naturally.
  • Meta description: Write a savory summary to draw in readers.
  • Recipe cards: Use a WordPress recipe plugin like Tasty Recipes. You get easy, SEO-friendly recipe cards in your posts. These cards are an excellent way to add keywords. Especially those specific to ingredients and cooking methods.
Add keywords to your Tasty Recipes recipe card

And here's something you don't want to forget: Do not keyword stuff. Keywords should complement your content, not clutter it.

Create Recipe Cards with Your Keywords!

But, do add keywords smoothly into your posts. And take advantage of plugins with features that foodies love, like recipe star ratings, jump to recipe buttons, and recipe videos.

That way, you elevate your blog's SEO potential and make your audience's experience that much sweeter.

Tasty Recipes product image with admin options.

Interested in trying Tasty Recipes?

With our easy-to-use, customizable recipe card plugin, Tasty Recipes helps you look good — and your recipes look even better.

Take a look at all Tasty Recipes has to offer.

Also, don’t forget about our 14-day money-back guarantee! Trying Tasty Recipes is risk-free!

8. Refresh old recipes

Just like revisiting a classic recipe to add a new twist, revisiting your older blog posts can breathe new life into them.

To update your old blog posts, add missing keywords. Look through your classic posts for opportunities to weave in trending keywords. And be sure to stay tuned to changes.

The palate of food blog SEO is always evolving, so keep your posts updated!

9. Taste-test and tweak

Monitoring and adapting your keyword strategy is crucial for SEO success.

Remember to check in on how your keywords are doing. Are they attracting the right audience to your blog? Use free keyword research tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console to see if your keywords are bringing traffic to your table.

Google Search Console header image

And look at how readers interact with your posts. Which recipes are they devouring, and which ones are being left on the plate?

And most importantly: be ready for change.

SEO is an ever-changing field. If certain aren't performing as expected, don't hesitate to change them. And revisit your posts from time to time to update them with new keywords.

That way, they stay relevant and search-engine friendly.

Food blog keyword research doesn't end here

It's time to wrap up this flavorful guide to food blog keyword research.

But remember that it doesn't end here. Finding SEO keywords for food blogs is an ongoing process. So connect with experts and learning resources to get all the more you need to improve your blog.

And don't forget the power of tools and WordPress plugins at your fingertips!

You've got Google, Semrush, and Ahrefs. Plus, you can get Tasty Recipes to make your food blog posts beautiful, user-friendly, and recipe SEO-optimized.

So, keep up with SEO trends, continue to learn from experts, and use tools to keep your food blog visible and irresistibly engaging.

Here’s to cooking up the right SEO keywords for your food blog!