This week we’re going to show you how to organize recipes in a binder! We’re also giving away a FREE Printable Page Marker for use with your new recipe binder! This cute page marker is designed to stylishly keep your place wherever you choose to store your recipes.
Our cute and colorful page marker includes pink & mint green macaroons and the phrase “bake life sweet”. We include PDF and a transparent PNG file so you can upload to your Cricut or Silhouette cutting machines to create a “print then cut” SVG or STUDIO file (no file conversion required). Later in the post we’ll show you how to size this for recipe planners. Check out how it turned out below!
Like most people I had a huge store of magazine clippings, computer printouts from 2002 and handwritten post card sized recipes from family members jammed into a completely uninspiring white binder with ZERO organization. I was always searching for a recipe and somehow I managed to lose a few culinary gems along the way.
I was thinking there had to be a better way. After weeks of brainstorming on how best to organize recipes in a binder…I do think I found the best way to organize your recipes…AND a way to do it with beautiful style. We’re going to show you how to organize recipes in a binder so your family heirlooms will stand the test of time. There are a few nifty uses for a recipe binder like:
- Cataloging & organizing your own treasured heirloom recipes for easy home use
- Catalog your family heirloom recipes to give away to friends and family
- Give away a blank recipe binder to give away as a gift
- Print out and assemble a binder to give away as a DIY gift to children, grandchildren or newlyweds
Being the super organized graphic designer I am I think I created the best way to organize your recipes beautifully for any of these purposes. I’m going to show you how to organize and preserve your recipes in a binder and if you like you can purchase all the files that I created (46 pages in total which I call the Vintage Pink Recipe Binder & Meal Planner use reader discount code BAKELIFESWEET for 20% off) for your own completely organized and cataloged recipe binder.
Even if you don’t like how I organized my recipe binder (or my design work) that’s okay…you can still download our FREE printable recipe binder page marker to start building your own recipe binder at home!
Coming up I’ve put together a short tour of everything I designed/created to put into my recipe binder. I knew I was going to need a few things to totally organize my recipes better than I had in the past and it’s something you should think about while building your own recipe binder (especially if you decide to build your own and not use our templates).
- Recipes should be organized by category with tab dividers for quick reference
- Create a recipe index for each category so you can see all recipes contained in that specific category (locate this just after the tab)
- Create a recipes notes page for capturing the tinkering many of us do while developing recipes
- Protect your recipe binder from food stains, grease and fingerprints that can occur during use
I really love how this entire project came together and I’m really excited to start giving away recipe binders to family at our next family reunion! Here’s how it all turned out!
Among the files I created for my recipe binder were 10 different tab dividers with inspirational phrases. Here’s my favorite one “make like sweet” and it forms a heart shape out of all the design elements I used throughout this recipe binder (I’m also using that one for my binder cover page on the outside of the binder). I also made unique, contrasting tab dividers that you can printout on glossy sticker paper to create labeled tabs. Here is a sampling of the dividers, tabs and category labels I made:
Each section needed a recipe index to really keep everything in tip top organization. Whenever I add a new recipe to a category I will add it to the index and make sure it all stays in order. You can even add page numbers if you like for additional organization. Just make sure that if you remove a page that it goes back into the same spot using your recipe index as a guide.
I created two different types of recipe cards which are printed with a design on both the front and back sides. For contrast I made one recipe card pink and the other mint green which is my favorite color. I like to alternate using the mint green cards with pink cards.
I really liked my “make life sweet” binder cover but I didn’t stop there! I made binder spine labels that will match any cover you could put inside the front cover of the binder. I made binder spines in a 1″, 2″ and 3″ sizes. All my covers and spines come with a speckled robins egg background in addition to plain white.
I also created a recipe notes page because I’m often tweaking my recipes (especially baking recipes) and I like to take notes because it can be weeks or even months before I’ll be able to get back to experimenting. The recipe notes page contrasts in design from the recipe index page.
Now, most normal people probably would have stopped there BUT I’m not normal! I was so in love with the graphics, colors and design I wanted to find a way that I could use them everyday. So I put together a weekly & monthly meal planning page and a shopping list. All of these meal planning pages & shopping lists come blank or pre-printed so you can decide on which day to start your week or how you categorize your shopping list. Here’s how they turned out:
|How to Resize Our Full Sheet Printables|
I know there will be many of my regular readers wondering how they can resize our free recipe binder page marker OR our recipe binder templates for their recipe planners which can range in size based on manufacturer. You can using THIS print resizing guide (this is also a pin on Pinterest that you can save for later to your planner boards for reference). This resizing guide contains a list of the most popular planners and the shrink percentage. You’ll need to shrink your printout by applying the suggested percentage in the print settings menu of your printer software.
|How to Organize & Protect Your Recipes in a Binder|
So now that I had everything I wanted designed for my recipe binder (which you can purchase HERE use reader discount code BAKELIFESWEET for 20% off) it was time to start actually organizing it all. I used a plain white 3″ binder with a clear insert on the front and back like this binder (I want to be able to use my pretty binder spines and covers).
After looking at my collection of printed recipes and magazine clippings I noticed that they were all stained with water, grease and food splatter and downright gross. In order to preserve all this hard work I decided that I would invest in protective recipe card holders. I found these really inexpensive 50 pack of clear protective 4×6 recipe card holders and purposely sized my recipe cards to fit in them.
I wanted to be able to print lots of these recipe cards for family and friends in the future so I used a free web based program called Picmonkey to overlay my text recipes onto my newly created digital recipe cards. All you have to do is create a new 8.5 x 11 file in Picmonkey, select a text box from the left hand side menu and then select from a large selection of fonts on the right hand side drop down menu. Now your ready to start creating your recipe cards!
There’s nothing wrong with writing out your recipes by hand but my handwriting is inconsistent (especially after a LOT of writing) and after decades in the digital age I think I can type faster than I can write. I also knew that I wanted to print out all these recipes for a family reunion coming up so I preferred to make them look tidy and professional so anyone can read them. Having a digital copy saved in Picmonkey‘s cloud server meant that I could come back and reprint/modify them even if my binder or laptop was destroyed.
I printed my pretty dividers onto super bright white cardstock so they would be thick. I also chose to laminate my dividers using my super basic and inexpensive laminating machine from Amazon. I also like to use 5 mil laminating pouches (over the lesser 3 mil) so that my laminated pages are super thick and quicker to thumb to.
I know that this binder could get tons of water, grease and food splatter so I want to try and protect everything the best way I can and not have to re-print anything. I also laminated the FREE page marker that I’m giving to you guys for all the same reasons mentioned above (it’s going to get a lot of wear being moved over and over again).
I printed my colorful, patterned divider tabs onto glossy white vinyl sticker paper, cut them out and folded them in half and stuck them onto my already printed and laminated divider pages.
I printed the recipe category labels onto a clear glossy sticker paper which you can find on Amazon. I cut out each clear label and affixed them to my divider tabs. All of the sticker papers I’m recommending here are thick and glossy and therefore will resist moisture and food stains.
I would be remiss if I didn’t try and plug my Vintage Pink Recipe Binder Templates one last time. I created 46 pages of beautifully color coordinated recipe binder components INCLUDING everything you need to start organizing your daily, weekly, monthly meal planning and shopping! With our recipe binder you can finally:
- Save time on shopping and meal planning every week
- Organize your birds nest of a recipe drawer into a binder you (or your family) can quickly reference at meal time
- Develop your recipes systematically & capture important recipe development notes
- Create a family heirloom you can pass down to family or friends
The Vintage Pink Recipe Binder Templates took several weeks for us to design……so save yourself a huge amount of time and skip to the fun part….building your own heirloom recipe binder!
You can purchase our recipe binder templates using a discount only available to our readers! Save 20% if you use the coupon code BAKELIFESWEET during check out. Just click on the image below to be taken to our printables storefront! If you only want to download the FREE printable recipe binder page marker keep scrolling.
I hope you love this super cute, FREE printable recipe binder page marker as much as I do! I hope this inspires you to think about how to organize recipes in a binder beautifully. If you LOVE the idea of getting FREE printables in your inbox every week join our FREE email subscribers list at the bottom of the page or join our Totally Free Printables Facebook Group.
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