Anyone who knows me, knows I love binders. I love to store all kinds of information in binders: holiday binder, decorating ideas binder, plants & garden binder, workout binder, and RECIPE binder!
I subscribe to roughly 6 monthly magazines (Southern Living, BH&G, Self, etc). I love to tear ideas and recipes out of the magazines and then recycle them when Im done. (No piles of year-old magazines sitting around my house!) But what to do with all the pages once they are torn out? Here is my (refined) system:
1. Tear out any recipe that you might like to try from the newspaper or a magazine, or print one online.
2. Three hole punch the paper and place in your recipe binder
3. Any new recipes that you have not tried and tested go in front of each section. Recipes that you constantly use go in the back of each section in sheet protectors.
— This helps you keep track of what you have tried and like
4. Once you have tried a new recipe
A. Throw it away if it tastes awful
B. Cut out the recipe and tape to a white piece of paper. Place the paper in a sheet protector
How to Make a Recipe Binder:
1. Buy a 3 ring binder (1″ or 1.5″ is best) — I like white binders with clear pockets in the front
2. (optional) Create a cover sheet for the binder on your computer (slide in pocket on front of binder)
3. Create different sections within the binder with tab dividers. Ideas of sections: Seafood, Chicken & Beef, Side Dishes, Desserts (always the largest section for me), drinks, breakfast, etc
4. Start adding to your binder!
Ive seen some interesting ways of ‘storing’ recipes — Ive even seen a recipe drawer that I immediately labeled ‘A Hot Mess’. The binder is a great way to keep track of recipes that you love and recipes that you might want to try. The key — throw away a recipe if you hated the way it turned out OR store it in the binder in a sheet protector. Make a decision right away when you try a new recipe — it will help keep the madness at bay.
Another idea – vow to try at least 2 new recipes a week. Your family will thank you for mixing it up.
The reason I recommend cutting the recipe out and taping to a white piece of paper is to cut down on visual clutter. Most recipes from magazines are on the same page as pictures, other recipes, and ads. I dont need to check all that out when Im searching for a recipe. Cut out the recipe — trash the rest! I take it a step further and organize the recipes that I plan to keep by style. Example: all apple pie recipes are taped to the same page (multiple pages for me because I love to bake). When I want to make an apple pie, I flip to the dessert section and then to the apple pie section. Now the decision can easily be made! That might be a little over the top for some…
The binder is very helpful when it comes to planning your weekly meals and making your grocery list. (Tips on this next week)!