Thursday, August 16, 2012

D.I.Y. - Recipe Binder

For about two-three years, I have kept my recipes as a stack of unorganized papers in a kitchen cupboard. Let's just say I have been lucky not to lose them all. This includes original recipes and ones that I have found, printed, loved, and wanted to save. I thought it was about time to get a recipe binder together.

Here is how I made my binder:

First, I got an old binder that had those plastic insert areas for the front, side, and back. You could also buy one, but I was lucky to have one handy. I designed a front/back side, and a spine label.  You can download my vintage design for the front here, and for the spine here.

Then, I went and bought section dividers at a local dollar store, but you can also buy those anywhere. I bought the kind you can put the label. I also had to go buy paper protectors. I found 50 of them for about $3.50 at Target. I highly recommend these, as they will keep your recipes protected while you have the binder out while you are cooking. It's a must!

The problem with the dividers and paper protectors is that once you put the dividers and paper protectors in the binder, the paper protectors hide the dividers. My solution was to put the dividers in their own paper protectors and cut out a slit for their tabs. It works beautifully, and also allowed me to add a pictures for the dividers. For instance, the salads section has a beautiful salad on it with a recipe. Makes sense, right?

My tabs that I included are:
  • Appetizers
  • Sides
  • Salads
  • Soups
  • Entrees
  • Breakfast
  • Desserts
  • Misc. 
You can choose whatever you want, but those I felt would work for my needs now. I may add some more specific tabs later on - like Italian, Mexican, doughs, breads, etc.  I also like to keep my recipes that I am not so sure about, or are testing out, on the inside pockets, but that's just a suggestion.

I keep lots of different kinds of recipes in my binder, including handwritten ones made by me or another person, magazine clippings, online printouts, from old books, etc. The paper protectors are really great because you can collage them to fit.

I hope you enjoy this, and I hope you will use my design. Who doesn't love a 50s recipe binder? Organization feels so good.


  1. love the front cover! might have to do this sometime...

  2. I love your idea to put the tab dividers in their own page protector. I ran into the same problem!


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