I love to cook! Now, if you ask hubby, he was sure he would starve 11 years ago when we got married. And the first year was a little sketchy, but now I love to find new recipes, try them out, and add variety to our weekly menu. The new meals either get a thumbs up from the family or a thumbs down. Therefore, I needed to do a big cleanout of recipes that hubby vetoed or we didn't really like. In addition, I had been scanning Pinterest for new ideas to organize my recipes. Then, I saw Megan's "Reader Space" post on IHeart Organizing. Megan also has her own blog Here. I loved the way she organized her recipes, among other great things!
I had been using two binders that I had around the house. There was no rhyme or reason to which recipes were in which binder. I was constantly flipping pages to find what I wanted. Dividers for different categories within those binders was an idea I had been tossing around. I have very little counter space, though, and the big binders were taking up a lot of room sometimes. So, I decided to give Megan's idea a try. Here is what I started with. Yikes!
And the inside...bigger Yikes!
I started by sorting everything on my kitchen table. I made piles by category and also pulled out recipes that could be thrown away (the thumbs down ones). That process looked like this.
I found these skinny folders/binders at Staples. I like using sheet protectors for my recipes and these would fit the sheet protectors. Many of the types I was looking at were only going to work if I 3-hole punched the actual recipe.
Here is what the inside of the folder looks like. I also like that it has a pocket so I can slide new recipes I find into the folder if I can't immediately get them into a sheet protector and put into the folder.
Each category of recipe was then put into one of the folders. I put a few categories into one folder if they were smaller.
My final step was to label the edges of each folder so I knew which categories were inside. This was my absolute favorite part of Megan's post. The ones she made were so pretty! So, I used large labels and Microsoft Word to create labels for the edges. Due to the plastic and bending on the edge, I also covered them with some clear packing tape to be sure the labels don't peel off.
It has been so easy lately to find the recipes I want to use for dinner and meal planning. These folders can lay flat on my counter, but are also light enough that I have been able to prop them up while cooking without them falling over. And it's so much prettier!