Copycat recipe binder


Thanks, Jules, for the impetus to get this project done. In fact, after rereading your old post, I realize that my project is so similar that I don’t have much to add. A good idea is a good idea. Suffice it to say, I had an old, overstuffed accordion file for recipes, plus a stack that hadn’t been filed at all. It was a mess. I also had multiple printouts of favorite recipes, and a flurry of slips of paper with a cryptic list of ingredients but no title. I was able to decipher a few of these, but others remain a puzzle. I tossed them.


I tossed a lot–all the multiples, anything we haven’t made in the past ten years, and anything I remembered as unsuccessful. 20 minutes. Then I sorted and put them into sheet protectors in an old three-inch binder that I found in a bin in the basement. 45 minutes. There’s not a lot of room for the inevitable expansion; I’m going to have to add a second binder. Good thing I have plenty of sheet protectors left.


Somewhat jokingly, my husband asked me if I had included an index. So I sat down and typed out a spreadsheet. 15 minutes. I got mired in formatting problems in Google Docs (another 15 minutes completely wasted) and didn’t print the list, but it’s easy enough to consult when I want to. In any case, I’m looking forward to easily pulling out a plastic-encased recipe and not worrying about the spills and splatters. The time I spent on the project was minor compared to the time I’ve spent fruitlessly hunting for misplaced recipes, then Googling and printing another copy.

An unintended benefit: my husband has taken the binder upstairs as bedtime reading material. I guess he already finished the latest issue of Food & Wine.