My disorderly recipe box

I really like to cook and to bake. I just enjoy being in the kitchen. Maybe it's because I just like food a lot? (Hmm...) I also love trying new recipes. If I taste something somewhere that I like, I will soon be asking for the recipe. I have cook books, recipe cards, notes, and full-sized sheets of paper with recipes on them. Once (on the phone with my sister-in-law one day), I jotted down her recipe for pizza dough on a page in my planner. It’s been there for over a year. To this day, whenever I make pizza dough, I have to track down my planner and find the right page! (I know, I know… this is ridiculous! I should have copied it onto a recipe card in the first place, but you know- then it wouldn't have been neat and tidy; it would have been a hurried scrawl. And I'm a perfectionist, so... I told myself I'd do it later. I just haven't gotten to the 'later' part yet.)

Which brings me to the topic of my post today: I need some help! Or, rather- my recipe box (or entire recipe system) needs some help! I'm sure that's rather obvious.

Does anyone have a better system than this? Does anyone house their recipes differently? Someone must. Please. I'd love to hear any and all ideas! This is getting out of hand.

Someday soon I hope to sit down and completely overhaul this system. If that means re-writing every recipe, I will do so, but first I want to hear if there's a better system out there...


  1. May. 24, 2006 - It is the last thing
    Posted by Dana
    on my list to copy all of my recipes. As much as I desire it to look pretty - it's not gonna happen anytime soon. So I took a binder, added dividers and page protectors. I just drop in the recipes as I collect, try and like them or sometimes I tape 2 recipes to a piece of paper and slip it in. Then when I need the recipe I take the entire protector out and the recipe is protected from my splatters. I usualy hook it to a clothes pin magnet on the fridge (it's near where I do most of my cooking/baking).
    I do have a file for recipes I havn't tried. Only the ones that are repeats go in the binder.


    May. 24, 2006 - Hi Stacy!
    Posted by kevmem
    I have accumulated MANY recipes, from little index cards to big pieces of paper. A year or so back I put the big recipes in a three ring binder, with index tabs. The small recipes still stay in my recipe box, so I just have to remember where it is when I need it! It has worked very well for me, esp since I print a lot of recipes off the internet (food network!). Get a cute 3 ring bider and decorate however you'd like...they sky's the limit! Mine is really boring - basic black, but my index page is VERY colorful. So be creative and enjoy!


    May. 24, 2006 - Oh!
    Posted by PreschoolersandPeace
    You know I do! Give me a day or two and I'll try to blog on it.


    May. 24, 2006 - Untitled Comment
    Posted by Rebeca
    I use the three ring binder system too- only mine is full of the sturdy plastic pockets- one for each category. On the front of the pocket I keep a list of all the recipes in each pocket. It's not totally organized, but it's a start. I'm wanting to move over to having them all on the computer, then I can dowload them to my PDA and take it to the kitchen or print them out. That way, since I get so many recipes from the internet, I can just save them to my recipe "folder" without wasting paper on a recipe I may never try. Also, when someone want a recipe from me, I can email it quickly without having to write it out.
    I'll look forward to seeing preschoolersandpeace's system!


    May. 24, 2006 - recipes!!
    Posted by Anonymous
    I use to house my recipes in a box also, didn't work for me either, a few years ago I spent some money on an actual 3-ring binder organized for recipes. I bought it at Hallmark. I forget how much it was, but very worth it! It has tabs with pre-typed categories, places for your already written index cards, lined paper for new recipes and more. I love it! It's also one of my favorite gifts to new brides filled with some of my favorite recipes. It sounds like the consensus is to use some type of 3-ring binder, I hope you find something that works for you!


    May. 24, 2006 - For those who commented...
    Posted by reformingmama
    Wow- you ladies are organized! :) I'm impressed! Some great ideas... I had wondered about the binder/page protecter system, so I'm happy to hear that's working for some of you!
    Kendra- I can't wait to hear about your system, too! :)

  2. I also use a 3 ring binder (see my July 06 archives) w/page protectors. If I find a recipe in a magazine it is so easy to cut it out an add it to the binder. I have them organized in sections: dessert, chicken dishes, beef, soups, breads, side dishes, etc. I have a recipe box, but almost never use it now that I started this system. Hope this helps! :)


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