It was 2004 when online visionary Adam Curry and software developer Dave Winer collaborated to create iPodder—a program designed to download internet radio broadcasts for iPods. This innovative technology meant convenient, offline access to radio broadcasts wherever and whenever. And, it was the first version of the podcast.
Fast-forward to 2020. It seems like everyone has a podcast. All it takes is a microphone, an internet connection, and pressing record. That’s what makes podcasts so great—countless voices speak about what’s important to them, sharing and connecting with the world.
Some of us use podcasts as a way to catch up on world news during our morning commute. Others get our laughter and thrills through podcast comedy specials and murder mysteries. And, for marathon streamer/madman Mike Russel of UK Podcasters, podcasting earned him a Guinness world record for his nonstop, 36-hour podcast appropriately titled The Longest Podcast in the World. Podcasts have even reached the classroom. Whether you’re a first-time streamer or a podcast pro looking for a new series, here’s our USANA-approved podcast recommendations based on genre, mood, and time on hand.
Have A Good Laugh
Angela Kinsey and Jenna Fischer cohost this fun breakdown of every The Office episode, one podcast at a time. Did you know Steve Carrell (who plays the beloved, blundering Michael Scott) had two offices for shooting scenes? Just one fun fact you’ll glean from listening.
Highlighted episode: The Fight.
Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me
The soothing baritone Bill Kurtis opens every episode of this witty, lighthearted take on the previous week’s news featuring celebrity guests. If you find yourself groaning at the latest “breaking” story, this is the podcast for you.
Highlighted episode: Saturday, April 18, 2020 with Tom Hanks.
Doree Shafrir and Kate Spencer are both published authors, moms, and cohosts of this authentic self-care podcast focused on trending products, real-world issues, and lifestyle advice. You’ll laugh and cringe right alongside these BFFs through every episode.
Highlighted episode: Find Your Wondrous Thing.
Fire remix, PBS.
LeVar Burton Reads
The Reading Rainbow and Star Trek icon is bringing literacy to the next generation, and we are here for it. Listen to LeVar read fictional short stories written by his very favorite authors. Take a pleasant break and learn about all sorts of awesome writers.
Highlighted episode: “Recitatif” by Toni Morrison, Part 1.
Girlboss Radio with Sophia Amoruso
Girlboss CEO/founder Sophia Amoruso and COO/editor in chief Neha Gandhi talk career building, navigating entrepreneurship, the future of media, and so much more with inspiring and successful women across every professional spectrum.
Highlighted episode: How to Tap Into Your Creativity with Kelly Wearstler.
Investigate Every Clue
Alice Isn’t Dead
A fictional thriller spanning three seasons. Episodes range from 20–30 minutes, but the gritty monologues, gripping conflicts, and surreal locales will have you pouring through hours of audio at a time.
Highlighted episode: Omelet.
(Listener discretion advised.) Follow a chilling Utah case from its origins to a murky conclusion with never-before-heard clips and ear-hooking details. A difficult listen, but an important revelation of the dangers of unseen domestic abuse.
Highlighted episode: To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before.
A Very Fatal Murder
If you roll your eyes at the thought of engrossing dramas—well, we already lost you at the genre headline. Thriller fan or not, this incredible—fictional—true-crime tale, narrated by David Pascal, is The Onion at their best.
Highlighted episode: What I Know And What I Don’t Know Yet.
Take Five (Minutes)
Up First with NPR
Hear details of the three top daily news stories in less time than it takes to brew your favorite coffee concoction, every morning at 6:00 ET. It’s an easy way to take in the news while commuting, exercising, making breakfast, or gardening.
Highlighted episode: The latest one available.
Two games. Three rounds. Five minutes or less. Run your brain through a quick exercise with an increasingly difficult series of rewarding mind games. It’s like sudoku, but with soundwaves. Give yourself a cognitive boost to rally through round three.
Highlighted episode: Missing and Subtotal.
Renowned drummer Questlove is living his best life, and listening to him dive into deep cuts and histories of legendary artists is a real treat. Come for the epic guests like Chris Rock and Seth Rogen, stay for the candid conversations and genuine appreciation of all things music.
Highlighted episode: QLS Classic: D-Nice.
Dig into the making of popular songs across genres with host Hrishikesh Hirway. Artists share the stories behind their tracks, unique creative process, and lyrics. Who knows—they might cover your favorite artist or anthem in an upcoming episode.
Highlighted episode: The Cranberries – All Over Now.
And Now, Listen
We hope our podcast recommendations help you find a new favorite. Tackle your list like a pro with these quick tips:
Download episodes to listen without a connection.
Adjust the playback speed to match your listening style.
Subscribe to different genres and podcasters to fit your every mood.
Set notifications for new episodes of your favorite podcasts.
Google your favorite celebrities and musicians to find them as podcast guests.