Home self-diagnostic tools for blood cholesterol monitoring have been around for over a decade but their widespread adoption has been limited by the relatively high cost of acquiring a quantitative test-strip reader, complicated procedure for operating the device, and inability to easily store and process results. To address this we have developed a smartphone accessory and software application that allows for the quantification of cholesterol levels in blood. Through a series of human trials we demonstrate that the system can accurately quantify total cholesterol levels in blood within 60 s by imaging standard test strips. In addition, we demonstrate how our accessory is optimized to improve measurement sensitivity and reproducibility across different individual smartphones. With the widespread adoption of smartphones and increasingly sophisticated image processing technology, accessories such as the one presented here will allow cholesterol monitoring to become more accurate and widespread, greatly improving preventive care for cardiovascular disease.