Flick photo by prettytypewriters
Regardless of how you choose to organize your recipes, you'll want a system that enables you to easily find the recipe you are looking for, add new recipes, browse for ideas, and keep recipe cards splatter- and grease-free. You'll also want to divide your recipes into categories that make sense to you. If you aren't sure about which categories to create, check the contents of a favorite cookbook and start with those. You can always create more categories or subdivisions if necessary.
1. Box. A recipe box is often a prized family heirloom, especially if it contains handwritten family recipes in a mother's or grandmother's hand. The one downside to the traditional recipe box is its small capacity. Today, when we have access to so many different types of ingredients and recipes, our repertoire has increased, and so have our storage needs. A photo-organizing box has more space than a traditional recipe box. A to Z dividers let you order recipes alphabetically, or flip them around to write in your own categories on the tabs.
2. Binder. Organize recipes into two- or three-inch binders. Putting each recipe into a three-hole-punched clear plastic sheet protector makes browsing easier and also keeps recipes clean. Binders are great for organizing recipes that you print off the computer. If the recipe is cut out from a periodical or is written on the front of an index card, you may want to glue it to a blank sheet of paper before putting it in plastic. Separate categories with subject dividers and label the divider tabs with a label maker or pen. One client who did a lot of baking made two binders - one for cooking and one for baking.
3. File. With a label maker, print category labels for the partitions in an accordian folder. Insert a manila folder labeled with the category so you can pull the whole file out and easily return it when you are done.
For more cleaning tips, check out What's A Disorganized Person To Do?