Home cooks share homemade meals on Shmeal app

Tech

CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) — A homemade meal-sharing app is proving to be a big hit during the pandemic.

In 2017, former Uber driver Craig Silver and former Instacart shopper and developer Justin Hamer launched a the app called Shmeal. 

“We knew the way that things were going with people using Uber, Airbnb, just the big economy in general, we knew that this was going to be a thing, and we wanted to be the ones to do it,” said Hamer.

The idea for the app: a home cooked meal that you go pick up from the chef’s home. 

With the pandemic keeping people inside, the app has seen an increase in users. 

“We’ve definitely had an uptick since COVID hit, it’s just kind of a good fit.  You are able to get a meal close by, people are at their homes, and people are cooking,” said Hamer.

“Cooks want to be able to cook safely,” added Silver. “So with Shmeal, you are able to be social distanced.  A Shmeal kitchen, it’s usually one person cooking and one person picking up.” 

The app has about 10,000 users and 200 cooks, including Morgan Barrington. 

“I was like I’m already cooking for myself, so this is a good opportunity to cook for others,” said Barrington.

She works for a catering company that has seen business slow down because of the pandemic, so she has turned to Instagram, and cooking for others with Shmeal. 

“It’s a great way to utilize their skills and to still do what we love to do, which is to serve people and to connect with our community. So you can make a little bit of money, you can continue to cook and be creative and follow your passion,” she said.

Right now, the app is only available in Chicago. 

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