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Over the eleven years I've been married (wow, I can't believe it's really been that long!), I've collected a ton of recipes.
It all started with the handful of cookbooks the sweet church ladies at my bridal shower gifted me. Then it transitioned into any and all discount cookbooks I could find at outlet stores. And don't even get me started on the mass collection of magazine tear-outs. I'm still finding those stuffed in the back of my kitchen drawers!
Then Pinterest came along. Oh Pinterest, how I both adore and hate you. This time-sucking site quickly became yet another place where I collected recipes, making sure to carefully categorize all my boards so I could—ha!—always find what I was looking for.
Really, it's a wonder I could make any meals with all of my recipes scattered everywhere.
Can you guess what became my massive organization project for the summer?
Yep…it was time to wrangle those scattered recipes into submission, once and for all!
However, if I was going to do this, I wanted to do it right.
I knew from past experience that a plain binder with “categorized” looseleaf pages wouldn't motivate me to conquer this project or enjoy it.I wanted an all-in-one resource that was functional, pretty, and not only satisfied my need for recipe organization but offered the capability to meal plan and grocery shop too.
So off I went, designing my dream recipe binder with all the features that would help me be more efficient in the kitchen. But the more time I poured into this project, the more I wanted to make it available to others who were in the same boat. I mean, I can't be the only girl with a hodgepodge of clippings shoved in a file folder…right?
At least I hope not. Otherwise, I would feel like a total mess! 😉
Either way, it motivated me to work even harder to make sure this binder met my own high expectations—and exceeded yours. And I have to say—I was THRILLED with how everything turned out.
In fact, I just about squealed with excitement the first time I took this binder for a test drive. Everything was SO pretty! But more than that, I felt like I had battled the kitchen chaos…and won.
- Instead of spending 5-10 minutes searching for that one recipe, I now had all my go-to favorites right at my fingertips.
- I now know exactly what meals are more suited for company and which ones I can rely on for my own family's dinnertime.
- And I could convert any recipe (or cut it in half) with a quick glance at my handy conversion chart. Goodbye Google!
This simple tool changed my entire attitude in the kitchen, and I can't wait to share its culinary superpowers with you too. I even packaged it up all official-like and gave it a name—The Printable Recipe Binder Kit—so you could have everything you need to organize your recipe collection from start-to-finish, in one convenient digital file.
Ready to make your own?
Grab your copy of the kit HERE and let's get started!
Related: More of a paperless gal? Here's the best app to digitally organize your recipes!!
Supplies will vary depending on which size binder you'd like to make. The Printable Recipe Binder Kit includes both Full and Half Sheet sizes so you can create a recipe book in whatever size you prefer.
Full Size files (8.5″ x 11″) are the same size as a regular piece of printer paper. This size offers extra room for printed recipe pages and magazine tear outs. You can also fit a LOT of recipes inside, whereas you might need multiple mini binders depending on how many recipes you want to organize.
- Half Size files (8.5″ x 5.5″) feature the same exact design, but take up only half a page. The benefit of the half size version is that it's more easily portable and takes up less space on the counter when you’re cooking.
Size Featured: Mini Binder
Every printable is designed to help you save your most beloved family recipes and get organized in the kitchen. It also features EDITABLE files so you can customize your recipe binder even more!
Don't forget to pick up:
- A three-ring binder. Once you know the size you want for your recipe binder, choose a three-ring binder to match. If you want to use any of the covers provided in The Printable Recipe Binder Kit, choose one with a clear sleeve in the front and back. Or you can go with a patterned option for something with a little extra flair.
- Page Protectors. A set of these will keep spills from ruining your divider and recipe pages. Just make sure to buy them in the size of your binder! (Full Size Page Protectors | Mini Size Page Protectors)
- Heavy duty white card stock for printing. The Half Size files fit two to a page, so you don't need to cut the cardstock ahead of time.
- Various tools. You'll need a paper trimmer, scissors, packing tape, and double sided tape. The last three will help you create your own DIY Divider Tabs.
- Adobe Reader software. Adobe is free to download on a Mac or PC and is how you'll be able to edit the Recipe Templates included in the kit.
Now you have everything you need to put your binder together. Find a Netflix show to binge-watch (might I suggest Poldark?) and let's get to work on your recipe organization!
Assembling Your Recipe Binder
Normally, I would advise you to declutter before starting an organization project, but let's be honest—culling through all your recipes is a massive undertaking and a whole other project in itself!
So I want you to choose just 20 recipes to start so we can keep the overwhelm at bay.
To help you narrow down these recipes, think about the theme of your recipe binder—will it be a complication of your top recipes among all different categories, or a binder that exclusively features main dishes, breads, or desserts?
Remember, you can make more than one binder (eventually!), but for now, choose just 20 recipes that will fit into whatever themed binder you want and print out a cover from the kit to match.
1. Sort your recipes into categories
With recipes in hand, you can then organize them into categories—main dishes, side dishes, soups & salads, etc.
Since everyone likes to organize their recipes a little differently, the kit features 48 categories to choose from, allowing you to be as specific or as broad as you like. But if for some reason there’s a category you don’t see included, you can easily use the EDITABLE files to create your own.
2. Print your cover, divider pages, and tabs
Once you finalize your theme and recipes categories, print them at home on heavy duty card stock or at an office supply store using glossy paper (which provides more vibrant color). Some places even allow you to order your print job online and pick it up later.
Yay for convenience!
3. Set up your framework
If you chose to print one of the covers provided in the kit, trim (if needed) and insert the front, back, and spine into the clear pocket sleeves.
Then slip your printed divider pages into clear plastic page protectors and arrange them in the order you’d like them to appear.
Lastly, add divider tabs to your pages, which will make flipping through your recipe binder a breeze! (Instructions for these are found HERE as well as in a video tutorial included in the kit.)
4. Add your favorite recipes
The best part of The Printable Recipe Binder Kit are the EDITABLE recipe templates you'll find inside. Just open up the file in Adobe Reader (remember, it's free!) and type directly onto the recipe card. You can even change font type, color, and size!
If you want to copy and paste recipes from online, that's not a problem either. There's some extra formatting you'll need to do, but I make this part super easy with a video tutorial that you'll be able to access inside the kit.
When you're happy with the way your recipe looks, just save it to a special desktop folder (so you can edit it later if needed, like if you discover you really like more chocolate chips than called for in that cookie recipe).
Then you're ready to print the recipe on heavy duty card stock and load into a page protector under the corresponding recipe category.
5. Insert extra resources
When the main bulk of your recipe binder is complete, you may want to take advantage of the handy kitchen charts, recipe index pages, and meal planning printables provided in the kit. This turns your recipe binder into more than an organizational tool…it's a meal planning hub as well!
A Unique and Special Gift Idea
One of my favorite things about this Recipe Binder (besides that it helps me organize everything), is that it can easily double as a gift too. I mean, how fun would it be to create a Recipe Binder to pass down to your children and grandchildren?
Your binder instantly becomes a cherished heirloom that can hold special memories for years to come.
Recipe binders also make lovely gifts for a bridal shower or wedding too. Get a group of ladies together and collect those recipes you make over and over again. I can't think of a more beautiful or special gift for a new bride building her own recipe collection.
Yay for a double win!
If your recipe collection needs a makeover, download The Printable Recipe Binder Kit, then put a date on the calendar to organize your recipes. Be sure to tag me on social media too, because I'm dying to see your Recipe Binder in action.
Which are you planning to do first?
Make a recipe binder for yourself…or as a gift for someone else?
Disclosure: Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. Read my full disclosure policy here.