Hi, my name is Maxence Roy and I’m the cofounder of 3 Min Meals for iOS. We’re currently hiring a chef to write 24 recipes for us. Please the read this post carefully if you’re interested in applying.

About 3 Min Meals

3 Min Meals is a meal prep iOS app that helps you cook a week’s worth of meals in 90min. Our mission is to make healthy eating cheaper, faster and easier than fast food. We believe that weekly meal prep is the most realistic way to achieve this mission, so we’re working on making it as easy and as fast as possible.

Core values

  1. Brain-dead easy : Made for the guy that never touched a spatula in his life.
  2. Incredibly fast : Cook a full week of meals (30+) in less than 90 minutes.
  3. Cheap as f*ck : All meals can be prepared for less than 3 bucks a piece.
  4. Mouth watering : Every meal taste like it was prepared by a top chef.
  5. Authentic and approachable : Recipes made from local, organic and fresh ingredients. Made for real people, not made to impress.
  6. Fat burning : Recipes are formulated to maximize fat loss and muscle growth.

Our clients

3 Minute Meals was originally designed for men that don’t have time to cook. We now have more female (54%) users than men (28%), so we’re now targeting to both sexes.

App store link

If you’re interested in getting this contract, the best thing you can do is to download our app and play with it you can click here.

Project details

In this section I’m going to describe what the project is, so you know exactly if you can deliver on it or not.

Do you need to write recipes AND shoot photos/videos ?

After talking to a few candidates, I realized that some are really good at writing recipes, but not at shooting videos… While some others are really good at shooting the videos, but not writing the recipes.

In the best scenario, we would hire one person that would do everything. But I would like just as much to hire one person really good at writing the recipes, and send those recipes over to the photo/video guy.

So if you’re really good at writing the recipes but not at shooting photos/videos OR vice versa, please still apply!

Recipe Guidelines

Before I go in the details of the project, you need to understand the 3 Min Meals system. We’re explaining it best in our onboarding graphics, so make sure to install the app and go through these 3 slides

Once you understand this and start playing with the app, you will see that recipes are only for the “proteins” components of the meal. The vegetables and carbs are plain-cooked in the same way for every meal.

Each recipe must comply with these guidelines :

  • Must have less than 7 total ingredients (excluding basics like olive oil, salt and pepper)
  • Must contain less than 7 steps to complete
  • Must cost less than US$3.00 per meal or $21.00 for a 7 meals recipe.
  • Must contain less than 15g of sugar per meal or 105g for a 7-meal recipe.
  • Must be simple enough so a guy with no cooking experience could do it the first time, only by reading the instructions.
  • Must be cooked with the cookware found on this page. Nothing else must be required.
  • Also, each recipe must be cooked using only ONE of these cooking equipments :
    • Cookie pan in oven
    • BBQ grill
    • Large pan on stove
    • Microwave
    • * This is to avoid having too many thing going on at once. Some of our users cook up to 3 different recipes simultaneously. If for each of the 3 recipes there’s a cookie pan in the oven and a sauce pan on the stove, that’s 6 things going on at once.
  • Each protein recipe must contain at least 30g of protein. Our rule of thumb for this is that for a 7 meals recipe, we try to have 1kg total of the protein source (Usually seafood, red meat, poultry or vegetarian sources)
  • Proteins recipes can also contain some healthy fats, usually from olive oil, butter, cheese or nuts.
  • Proteins recipes can contain vegetables, for example in a saute or chili con carne.
  • Proteins recipes can not contain carb sources like pastas, potatoes, rice, etc. This is because we add it separately to meals and we don’t want to have double the portion.
  • Must preserve themselves up to 4 days in the fridge and 7+ days in the freezer without going bad. That’s because when the meal prep is done, we instruct our users to put 4 days of meals in the fridge and the rest in the freezer. For example, recipes could not include apples or avocados, since these would turn brown.
  • Must not have non-necessary long “idle time”, for example :
    • Marinate for 20 min
    • Cook in oven for 45 min
    • Rest the meat for 20 min
    • * These are perfectly fine for a chef, and of course it makes the food taste better. But our priority with our users is to get everything done within 90 min, and it’s really important we fulfill on this promise. In this case, it would be 90min total, but not if we have 2 other recipes to cook.
  • Must be flavorful and delicious, of course!

You will need to submit your ideas at the start of each month, and we’ll discuss them. Once I approve the ideas, you’re good to go.

About sauces

In my experience (I’ve done meal prep for 2 years) if you have something very liquid it soaks up your rice and veggies and overall makes the meal not so nice after 4 days in the fridge. Also there’s the issue of spills for people that don’t have air-tight containers (Which is a lot of people).

In general the best case is when you have a sauce that holds together. Think store-bought barbecue sauce or ketchup for an idea of the required texture / thickness. That’s really the best of the best scenario. It’s juicy and delicious, yet it doesn’t soak your rice and veggies in the food container.

The other issue is that with meal prep you put everything in the microwave. So if your sauce doesn’t go in the microwave, like with a yogourt or fresh sour cream sauce, you need separate small containers and that’s a bit of a pain. That’s why we try to go with sauces that go in the microwave.

Also we do have a recipe with avocados, but I’m really not sure about it because avocados go brown after 1 day in the fridge.

I may not have explained the “why” behind my hesitation to some types of sauces. Now that you understand my “why”, go ahead with your sauce ideas!

Video Guidelines


Before I go into the specific guidelines, you may want to know where the videos are going to be used.

Click here to view a wireframe of the Screen

Currently, we don’t have video instructions, we only have text instructions. My goal is for us to have interactive, step-by-step video instructions. Ideally, you can just say “next” and it will shift.

By interactive, here’s what I mean. Let’s say you cook 2 recipes for the week : Chili Con Carne and BBQ Chicken Breasts.

So you’re cooking your Chili Con Carne, and you’re at step 6 of the recipe “Place in the oven for 30 min”. Now, the app will SWITCH RECIPES so you can start immediately cooking the chicken breasts while the chili con carne is in the oven.

Once the chili is done, whatever you’re doing, the app will notify you to take your chili out of the oven.

Cool, right? The reason I’m explaining this is so that you understand that a big thing about these videos is they need to be small, interchangeable clips.

Going back to our example, let’s say in the Step 6 of the chili, you shoot the video and there’s something else in the oven, or whatever step from another recipe. It might not work as well.

Consider small screens

In 90% of case, video is seen from a phone. (Some people use a Tablet but its a small minority.)

Not only people are using a small screen, but often while cooking they will look at their phone from a distance. For example, they will place the phone in the corner, on top of their microwave, and leave it there.

Good example for the in-app step instructions : link 

Good format for potential 60s ads :  link*

* I’m not sure the angle and framing on the previous example would be good for video instructions. However, it would make for killer 60s ads on our Facebook page. If there’s a way we can shoot both angles, it would be awesome. 

This should give you an idea of the angles that I’m looking for. The 1st and 2nd video show good angles of footage for small operations, like cutting, mixing, etc.

1 interchangeable, short video clip for each step

Like I talked you in the introduction, I want one distinct video clip for every “step” of the recipe. Before we shoot the videos, I will look at the recipe and I will break down what I consider a “step”. Once you have that, you need to make sure that the video clips are separated.

Whenever possible, you should make the video clip interchangeable. Here’s what I mean by that. Let’s say that the step is  “Roughly chop the onions.” or “Rub the bottom of the pan with olive oil”.

These are steps that we can reuse in a lot of recipes. So it’s best to make sure we can reuse it.

Don’t edit your videos

Send me the highest quality, unedited versions of your video. You can cut out the parts that won’t be used if you want.


KISS : Keep it stupid

I’m taking the opportunity here to remind you how important it is to KEEP IT SIMPLE.

  • We don’t “mince” onions with the perfect technique. Our clients chop an onion however they can.
  • We don’t make fancy presentations
  • We don’t have recipes with hard to follow timings, and many parallel operations

If you can’t show your video to a 12 year old, and have him succeed, it’s too hard for us. I’m stressing this point.

Guidelines for Photos

Currently we are using stock photos for our recipes. We want to start using our own original photos. For simplicity and branding, we want all photos to be unique in their own details, but same in the same overall setting.

For each finished recipe, we need at least one good, solid photo. I’m not sure yet of the setting for all the photos, but I have 2 ideas in mind, and we can discuss these later.

Essential : Photo in the cookware Extra credit : Photo in the finished tupperware with the suggested sides
For each recipe, you need to have this photo. For example, we would photograph grilled salmon on the cookie plate. Focusing on one salmon fillet, maybe blurring the other salmon fillets. Could add the sauce or topping directly.

Good: Would be a better representation of “reality”.

Bad : May be less attractive to the user, and won’t see how this proteins recipe “fits in” the meal.

Good : Will represent the meal in the finished state, making it more “real” to the user.

Bad : User may think that the Proteins Recipe includes the Carbs and Veggies that are in the meal.

Deliverables and payment

For each recipe, you will need to deliver :

– 2-word title (See white titles in iOS App)
– 4-5 word sub title (See yellow subtitles in app)
– Text instructions in a numbered format
– Nutritional information for calories and macros
– We want an equal amount of Poultry, Seafood, Red meat and Vegetarian recipes.

If you’re also shooting photos and videos, we will ask for :
– At least one good photo of every meal, according to the guidelines
– One short video clip for each major step in the recipe (To be discussed)

Option #1 : 4 recipes per month

You can deliver 4 recipes per month for 6 months. This means you will create a total of 24 recipes.

Option #2 : 24 recipes all at once

If you prefer to work all at once, this is 100% cool with us. You will deliver all of the written recipes first, then I will approve them and suggest modifications.

Once that’s done, we’re gonna start working (with you or someone else) to shoot the photos and the videos for the project.

Initial offer

My initial offer is US$100 per recipe including everything, so the contract is for a total of US$2,400. At this price, we’re not paying for the ingredients.

We can negotiate prices if you only want to write the recipes OR shoot videos/photos. I’m very flexible an open minded, all I care about is that we have a great final product.

Now, keep in mind that if you do a great job over the 6 months, we’re gonna want to keep working with you with no end in mind, so that could potentially be a $4,800/year recurring contract for you.

How to apply

* If you’re from UpWork, please apply there otherwise I will need to decline your application. 

If you found this job post from somewhere else, you can apply directly at jobs@healthguardian.hk with the following info : 

a) Subject of email needs to be “Application for 3 Min Meals – [Your Name]”

b) Include your past 2 jobs and/or projects that are the most closely related to this project. If you wrote recipes, a book, photos, cooking videos, etc. This is how I will evaluate if you can do this project.

c) Include any other relevant materials or experience that I can look at.

Please make sure that you read the post in details and that you can deliver on everything.

On april 30th, I will select about 3 candidates. If you’re part of this, I will ask you to go through the whole process for 1 recipe. The person that delivers the best will win the contract.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this and helping us in our mission to make the world a healthier place.

Maxence Roy