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Recipe organization

July 22, 2014

Recipe cards

Magazine stacks

Messy table

After thoroughly wearing myself out making the plum jelly on Saturday, I didn’t think I’d want to do anything but hang by the lake for the rest of the weekend.  But I woke up with a real burst of energy Sunday morning and decided to tackle the bookshelf in my dining room.  (Also both roads I tried to take to get to the lake were closed — what the what?!)  I’m a magazine junkie, but I’m very lazy about throwing away recycling old issues when the new ones come in.  I always hang on to them “just in case” I need to find that one recipe again someday.  And while there are a few recipes I want to hang on to, most of those magazines just serve as a source of inspiration for how to use whatever’s in season at the time of print.  So I’m copying down the individual recipes that I return to again & again (mostly sweets and holiday dishes), and putting them in my little recipe binder.  And for the longer articles that are too good to toss out but too long to copy onto a single card, I’m slipping them into page protectors and putting them in a regular 3-ring binder.  It feels really good to be getting all of this organized (no more digging through stacks of junk trying to find my favorite article on taco recipes!), but it’s making me hungry for cake and soup and all of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes.  Why does it have to be 102° today?!

In order to keep the magazines from piling up again, I’ve got a new rule.  I’m only keeping issues for the current month, plus or minus one month.  So right now I’ve got June, July, and August issues in a magazine holder.  In a few days, I’ll pull the June issues to make room for incoming September issues.  We’ll see how long I can keep this up!  🙂

My recipe binder is from Hallmark.  I don’t think they have this design anymore, which features little watercolor sketches of food labeled in French, but these are similar.  The binders come with a few recipe cards and the little plastic page protectors that just perfectly fit 2 recipe cards each.  Super handy!  I love having my recipe cards protected while I’m using them, and the binder fits nicely in a cookbook stand.  I’ve had mine for several years, but it’s getting really full, so I’m going to have to expand to a 2nd binder soon.  I don’t use the recipe cards that came with my binder, though, because I’m so in love with the adorable, heavy card stock, personalized letterpress recipe cards made by my friend Christy at Inkello.

How do you organize your favorite recipes?

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 24, 2014 12:06 pm

    I did this maybe a year or two ago. I had too many recipes I had already ripped out and were saving that the idea of copying was too overwhelming though I love how quaint cards are. I just put the recipes in the page protectors and I now have two binders full. I do have some food magazines saved though that I am okay with saving. I save my cooks illustrated and cooks country. I don’t have too many of those. I have a couple canning magazines and some Food magazines. I loved that magazine and wish they still had it. Some recipes from Food are in the binder but the newer ones I had I kept. Stella actually loves getting them out and looking at them. I will have to snap a picture of that sometime.

    • whitney marie permalink*
      July 24, 2014 9:52 pm

      It is pretty overwhelming when I look at my list of recipes to copy down — I’ve done 25-ish in the last week, and I still have about 35-ish to go — but I think that’s part of what keeps me from going overboard (otherwise I’d probably have at least 100 recipes that I wanted to save!). Besides, I just love recipe cards. 🙂 My mom always had her recipes — mostly ones she’d gotten from friends and relatives — written on cards, kept in individual little plastic sleeves, stuck here & there all over the kitchen & dining room. She could never find the recipe she was looking for!

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