Keeping track of your recipes

@Debs_place (10525)
United States
March 4, 2007 6:06pm CST
Okay all of you cooks and chefs, how you you keep track of your recipes? I seem to have so many cookbooks and so many cards and so many word files, that I have a hard time keeping track of my recipes. How do you do it? I am looking at getting some software - http://www.digitalfriedchicken.com/CookWare.html Has anyone used this? Were you happy with it? Do you have a better way?
3 people like this
19 responses
• United States
5 Mar 07
Hi Debs_place, I had the same problem. I have so many cookbooks and cards, and files, and well, you know. I love to cook. I enjoy trying new things, but found that I usually tend to stick to a number of tried and true favorites that my family really enjoys. It took me a while but I decided to make my own recipe books. I bought several 3-ring notebooks and a LOT of plastic covers for the recipes. The first book I did for myself was a cookbook of all of my own recipes which included favorite family recipes and recipes I knew my family loved. I made it much like a regular cookbook using different color pages for each section. Main Dishes, Casseroles, Deserts, Soups and Salads and so on. It's the cookbook I use the most. The cookbook is vinyl so it's easy to clean and instead of loosing the notes or cards that I used to save, I have the notes or cards inside the plastic sleeve. If I ever do remove a page, it's easy to return it to the book. The notebook matches my kitchen decor so it also looks good on the counter, closed or open. I also spent the money for one of those pull-out holders that you attach to the bottom of your upper cabinet. It keeps the book in plain sight and holds it open to the page. You can keep the book on it and slide it under the cabinet or remove the book and put it back on the shelf. Since I typed the recipes myself on my computer, I was able to make the font a size easily readable and still have room for notes or pictures. I stored the other cookbooks in my top cabinet and hardly EVER get them out.
2 people like this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
I like the pull out shelf idea. Where did you get it?
@cutepenguin (6457)
• Canada
5 Mar 07
I write my favourite recipes in a little book. Recipes that I like from the internet I print out and keep in a binder. And I have two boxes of cookbooks in my inlaws attics, as well as a shelf of them here.
2 people like this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
You have a little book of favorite recipes and 2 boxes in the inlaws attic? I would miss them, I like to try cooking different things.
• United States
5 Mar 07
My favorite recipes go into my cookbook - a binder with clear plastic sheet-protectors that I keep in the kitchen. Other recipes that come on notecards or on the back of grocery packages or clipped from magazines/newspapers easily slip into these sheet-protectors as well. All the Word documents on my computer I keep sorted in folders by the type of recipe. Sometimes I use the "Search" function of Windows to find a particular ingredient if I don't know which folder to look in (like "strawberries"). When I've printed a recipe to put in my book, I make a note in the document that it has already been printed so I don't print the same one more than once. On occasion I find a recipe in a cookbook, which I type (with a note of where the recipe came from) so I don't have to refer to the cookbook every time. This method has worked for me for years, even though my collection has grown quite a lot. I tried a software several years ago but it just didn't work for me, since I do keep a lot of recipes from magazines and newspapers and I don't want to have to re-type every single one of them or lose the beautiful photos of food that come with the recipes.
2 people like this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I have a binder, but what will happen is, we go to use the recipe and take it out, we often cook multiple items at one time. ANd then it gets lost or destroyed. THe pictures are nice, but my cooking never looks like the picture.
1 person likes this
@lullabell (436)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I am probably the most un organized person on the planet! Mine are in boxes and stacked with other books. I do have the frequently used ones torn out and folded into my favorite cook book (which is so old it is falling apart) but they are all together for now next to my microwave in the kitchen. I like epicourious.com for finding "what's for dinner".
2 people like this
• United States
5 Mar 07
You can either store it on a disc for your computer. Or, as I do, write down your favorites and put them into a 3 ring notebook. You can put in dividers for deserts, breads, entres, and so forth. It works great for me, but only my very best go into it. I have tons of cookbooks that are stacked up in the closet. This is so easy for me now.
2 people like this
@Avinio (88)
• Israel
5 Mar 07
The best way it's just start a new word office document, and write there everything you find. believe me, in the end you will have such a great book ;)
1 person likes this
@bonbon50 (659)
• United States
5 Mar 07
It took a while, but I took all those cut recipes and typed up my own files, sometimes scanning a photo to put with the recipe. Then, I divided them into different folders. In each folder, I would have a category. Like for desserts, I would have gelatins, cookies, cakes, pies. I would plan my whole week by just copying and pasting the recipe and ingredients onto a page and print it out; thus having a shopping list as well. Now it's much easier to find things without shifting through tons of clipping and they now take up no room. This does take a while to do if you collect like I have, but worth it.
1 person likes this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
Yes, and if this is one way to get rid of some clutter...it is a good thing.
@vixel83 (212)
5 Mar 07
Mine are on cards, scraps of paper, magazine cuttings etc. in many "safe" places I'm completely unable to locate anymore, as well as bookmarked on my PC, or generally memorised. I resolved that sometime last month I would sort them all and copy / paste them neatly into a notebook but it never happened!
1 person likes this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
Well there are still a few weeks of winter left, you can get it done by summer if you start now. ;-)
• United States
5 Mar 07
We keep most of our recipes on the PC. We type them on the computer and put them in a recipe folder. This really helped us. Plus when we need the recipe for cooking we can print it out.
1 person likes this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
Yes, when I cook I will print out recipes and hang them on the cabinet doors. Then I assemble all ingredients under each recipe. That is one reason why I like having them on the computer. But I also put nutritional infor on them, the SO is a diabetic, so I try to consider him when I cook.
• Japan
5 Mar 07
I keep all of my recipes in a folder on my notebook computer. If I have something that came out of a magazine or book, I scan the page and add it to my folder. I then title them with the name of the recipe. They are very easy to find and very easy to read.
1 person likes this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
7 Mar 07
I Like to be able to search for an ingredient, and if I scanned something in it wouldn't work
@polachicago (19073)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I don't keep my recipes. I always cook by memory. Sometimes I just invent something and like it, but I don't keep it as my recipes. Today I made zucchini mixed with banana warmed up on pan with touch of butter. Once I like something I will remember it.
1 person likes this
@Debs_place (10525)
• United States
5 Mar 07
YOu cook by memory..I do that with old favorites...like chicken soup, but for other things..I prefer recipes. I am not as creative as you are.
@caribe (2465)
• United States
5 Mar 07
The ones I use often, I have in a notebook. Most of my recipes are on my computer in my word files but I Title all of them Recipes-(and the name of the recipe here.) That way they are are in one section of my word file and I don't have to hunt through everything to find a recipe. I guess I could make a folder for them as well, but I haven't. I have never used the software you mentioned, however, I do have a cookbook on my computer that I believe my personal recipes can be added to. I have just never done it.
@Joey322 (272)
• United States
5 Mar 07
i created a spreadsheet that divides into 2 columns at the top- Main Dishes and Side Dishes then, i made goups under the main dishes by Seafood, Pork, Chicken, Beef etc... then, i plan my meals off this spreadsheet (made on excel) every week. then, i get my recipes from my recipe box (all on index cards and divided by same categories). it takes time, but you can do it. buy som fun pens and copy all the ones you like from cookbooks onto cards. that way it'll be handy if you want it and you don't have to copy it unless you'll make it again! plus, it's more convenient than a big cookbook. take care.
@mssnow (9493)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I got me a three ring notebook. Bought some of those index dividers. Made categories and printed out my recipes. used a three punch hole. Now they are all in one book. Its like my own favorite recipe cookbook. It works great for me.
1 person likes this
@Osterode (74)
• United States
5 Mar 07
My Mom keeps hers in recipe tins marked by what they are..such as desserts, salads,entrees, etc.. I keep mine in binders, I punch holes in the recipe I printed out and then put them in my three ring binders. I have like 7 now, and I label on the folder desserts, and meats, and drinks. It seems to help me.
1 person likes this
@Molly322 (126)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I have a shelf of cookbooks and a recipe card holder for the loose items. I make notes on the pages of recipes I've tried (date made, modifications, notes, whether it would be worth it to make it again etc.) Recipes I make over and over are flagged or have the pages turned down. I don't use the recipe books or cards often though. A lot of my cooking is off the cuff so to speak or done by heart for the favorites...
1 person likes this
@sweetlady10 (3617)
• United States
5 Mar 07
I always use website for recipe and when I need to use them just I go online. Otherwise it is a pain to keep them in order if you write them on note book or have many books of recipes. Because in between books it takes time to find one particular recipe, but online it is easy to find. If I get some good recipe in Mylot posted by other members I save them in a word file.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Mar 07
I am a cookbook collector, along with always cooking from recipes that I get on the internet or friends, the best way I have found is to place all the recipes into a binder, placing the worn and fragile ones in sheet protectors to protect them from further abuse. Just recently I added tabbed dividers to my binder making it easier to find my favorite recipes. I am extremely happy with my method and I keep my binder in my kitchen for easy reach.
1 person likes this
@kathy77 (7488)
• Australia
5 Mar 07
No I have never used this particular website, but with all my recipes I keep them in a folder and this is very easy for me to find what I am looking for as the subject tells me what is inside the folder.
1 person likes this