If you're not already obsessed with the world of podcasts, you soon will be.

By Southern Living
April 09, 2018
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Let's start with the basics. What's a podcast? It's an audio (or video) program—much like a radio show—that you can download or stream from the Internet and listen to at your leisure. There are podcasts on every subject under the sun: food, travel, politics, design, storytelling, science, true crime, books. The list is truly endless. There's a podcast out there for every interest, and new episodes drop every day, which means there's an infinite stream of entertainment just waiting for you to dive in. Let us help you take your first steps into this fantastic (and addictive) mode of programming with a quick and easy primer on podcasts.

Where do I find podcasts?

You can find podcasts in several places. If you know exactly which podcast you want to listen to, you can go to that podcast's website and click play. This will stream a podcast episode to your device, which you can listen to as it streams. You can also download podcasts from apps, like the Apple Podcast app, Spotify, or Stitcher. This will save the podcast to your device so that you can listen to it later. (More info on that below.)

How do I download podcasts?

You can listen to podcast episodes on your device of choice—phone, laptop, tablet, smartwatch, or desktop. Once you decide which device to use, you can begin to access and download episodes. If you have an iPhone or iPad, the Apple Podcast app is probably already downloaded and accessible on your device. If not, go to the iTunes App Store, search for the Apple Podcast app, and download it to your device. Tap the icon and start browsing. When you find a podcast that interests you, download the episodes and start listening.

If using an Android device, you can download a free podcast-playing app like Stitcher, Podbean, or Spreaker Podcast Radio from the Google Play Store. Once you download the app, you will be able to search for, download, save, and access podcasts within it.

When can I listen to podcasts?

Anytime. On your commute, on a run, while cooking dinner, while cross-stitching, while gardening. You'll find that many moments in your day can be improved by a jaunt into a fascinating podcast. All you have to do is pop in your ear buds for unlimited entertainment and education.

How much do podcasts cost?

You can listen to them for free! (We know, we still can't believe it either.) One caveat: Some platforms require a subscription and accompanying fee to access content, but there are plenty of free-access options out there too.

Where should I start?

What sparks your interest? Search, explore, listen, and you'll find your favorite series in no time. We do have some recommendations for you, though, to get started on your podcast journey: Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell explores misunderstood and forgotten moments from the past. Start at the beginning of season one and prepare to be wowed. Stuff You Should Know gets into the inner workings of thousands of topics, including How Junk Food Works, How Reverse Psychology Works, and How Free Speech Works. There are even podcasts that will help you fall asleep.  And probably our most favorite of all to share (shameless plug!), our very own Biscuits & Jam Podcast, which launched on June 2.

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About Biscuits & Jam Podcast

In the South, talking about food is personal. It’s a way of sharing your history, your family, your culture, and yourself. Each week, Sid Evans, Editor in Chief of Southern Living, will sit down with celebrity musicians to hear stories of how they grew up, what inspired them, and how they’ve been shaped by Southern culture. Sid will take us back to some of their most cherished memories and traditions, the family meals they still think about, and their favorite places to eat on the road.

Listen to the our trailer on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or everywhere podcasts are available

How to Listen to Podcasts

Mobile: Your smartphone is one of the easiest ways to listen to our podcasts anywhere you want. Many podcast listening apps like Stitcher, Spotify or Podkicker allow you to listen on iOS, Android or desktop. Find them in your phone’s app store. 

iOS: To listen on your iphone or ipad click on the Apple Podcasts app. There you can listen and subscribe to all of your favourite shows or search the directory to find something new.

Android: Android users can use the built-in Google Podcasts app. There you can listen and subscribe to all of your favourite shows or search the directory to find something new.

Desktop: Most podcasts have a play function on their website to make for convenient listening on those days when you can’t leave your desk. Just navigate to the podcast episode page and look for the play button. 

How to Subscribe to Podcasts

Once you find a podcast you love, make sure you never miss an episode by tapping the subscribe button in your preferred listening app. Your app will then automatically update every time a new episode is released.

To unsubscribe from a podcast, click the “unsubscribe” link in your preferred listening app.