How do you store your recipes?

I have recipes from all over the place. Magazines, notes jotted down on scraps of paper, index cards, pages ripped out of books. Right now, they are in a pile. Any suggestions out there?

  • Posted by: KaleHog
  • June 20, 2011


louisez October 11, 2012
I'm also a partisan of three-ring binders with plastic sleeves. Hand-written recipes, recipes printed from the internet, favorite cookbook recipes that I've copied -- all go into one of three binders. I have dividers for appetizers, breakfast/brunch, breads, soups, salads, main dishes, vegetables and sides, sauces, condiments, cakes and cookies and desserts. It's much easier for me to read print-outs -- though I know this may not be true of those without vision issues. It's also nice to just wipe a page down if something splashes.
ATG117 October 11, 2012
I use evernote, but I haven't figured out how to efficiently organize, aside from using tags. Does anyone mind sharing their method of organization on evernote?
bobgar October 11, 2012
I know this is a late reaction to user JSlocum above, but I just joined Food52 and saw this thread about storing recipes. The program Cook'n is indeed a topper! Not only is it compatible with Windows and Mac, but the program is available very soon as an app for various smartphone plaforms. I had been using AccuChef for years, entering new recipes by copy/paste into an import wizard. But the special internet capture feature of Cook'n is light years ahead - even imports a picture. You can read more about the program at

jenmmcd July 28, 2011
This is an older question, but I just discovered the Paprika app for my iPad and thought I'd share... It's great! You can go to almost any recipe site, including Food52, and just click "save recipe" and it imports it into your cookbook, including picture, etc. You can create your own categories, rate them, email them, and search. When you're entering a recipe, it has shortcuts for ingredients which makes manually entering a bit faster. You can also import from MacGrourmet and a lot of other common desktop recipe organizers. So far I am very happy with it. Just thought I'd pass it along since this has come up a few times...
KaleHog June 21, 2011
This is awesome! I really love the idea of taking a picture of the recipes and using Evernote. I have it on my iPhone and iPad but I never thought about using it for recipes!! iPad is the best cooking companion in the universe and this is going to make it even better. And now I can recycle this mess of papers. Yes!
the P. June 20, 2011
I'm with the hard-copy people. I find hand-writing and pasting recipes into a kind of scrapbook to be delightfully old-fashioned and relaxing. I keep sturdy blank-page journals, divvy them up into roughly equal sections when they're new, leave a few extra blank pages at the end, label the sections (similar to SKK's above), and start recipes in, some pasted, some written. Eventually, when the book starts to get full, I hand-write an index at the back. I again, find this to be fun, leisurely, and tatcile in the same way I approach cooking. It's also great for showing friends when they come over and ask for a recipe.
flgal June 20, 2011
Interesting sites that people have mentioned, but I just store them in My Documents. I either copy and paste into word or type in recipes. Most of them I am able to find on the web , so it is mostly copy and paste. Works beautifully for me.
SKK June 20, 2011
@AJ - Right with you on spending time cooking! My dividers are simple -
Hors derves
Entrees - Meats, Fish, Chicken, Vegetarian
Sides - Vegetable, grains, beans, potato
Vegan Meals
Preserving - canning, cheese making, pickling,

JSlocum June 20, 2011
I use a great program called Cook'n and you can even print your own cookbook once you have them entered. It is a one time purchase but worth it - you also can download cookbooks and get on line support and weekly newsletter and lots of new recipes. I have really enjoyed having a place to enter all my recipes and have them organized, and plan to print the cookbook for my grown kids soon. I have over 150 recipes in there but keep adding them weekly. I am not very computer savy but was able to do this just fine. Check it out! I also use Eat My Books for a place to catalog all my cookbooks.
jenmmcd June 20, 2011
I'm with SKK. I have 2 binders with separator tabs for thinks like chicken, meats, breakfast, breads, desserts... etc... I don't have the energy to get them all online.
AntoniaJames June 20, 2011
SKK, what are the subject breakdowns for your dividers? How many binders do you have, and how are they organized? I like hard copies, too. The clear sleeves are a good idea, one awaiting full implementation here. (I use them sporadically. My office is really well organized. My recipes, alas, are not. In fact, I have several large bucket accordion files stuffed with folders and loose documents that are only partially, meaning that they are not, organized. I'd rather spend what precious little time I have cooking!!) ;o)
PIIHA June 20, 2011
Right there with SKK. We have 3 separate 3-ring binders. One is for appetizers, one for main dishes (sorted according to Protein), and one for desserts.

Voted the Best Reply!

SKK June 20, 2011
I am very old fashioned in the way I store my recipes. I place them in Avery sheet protectors and put them in 3 ring binders with dividers.
Robin O. June 20, 2011
I use MacGourmet. I can manually enter my old recipes from recipe cards and I can also copy and paste from a source on the Internet like Food52. I store it on my Mac and then sync it to my IPad which I can take with me to the kitchen. Before that, I used a big notebook binder with clear envelope pages that I stuffed with computer copies and magazine pages.
Peter June 20, 2011
Evernote does a pretty great job with OCR -- Optical Character Recognition. So if you scan a recipe, or even take a clear photo of the page with your iPhone, Evernote "reads" the text and then you can search the contents of the page say, by doing a search for the word "rhubarb". It's like magic. :-)
MrsKeller June 20, 2011
I use an app called Genius Scan to convert printed recipes to PDF files. From there, you can send them wherever you like.

Works great on newspaper clippings, index cards, etc. I especially like it for copying a recipe out of a cookbook. I do this a lot with library books.
AntoniaJames June 20, 2011
It seems like this question is more about what to do with all the hard copy clippings, notes, etc. The software and apps are interesting but I'm wondering . . . do those of you who use them scan all your hard copies first? Do these solutions accomodate PDFs? Do they accomodate Word documents? (During my years as a trial lawyer, when out of town on multiple-day deposition trips, I spent whatever "down time" that I could transcribing family and other favorite recipes. I have scores of recipes that I've typed or scanned over the years just waiting for the ever-elusive organizing solution.) ;o)
Helen's A. June 20, 2011
FYI - I use Evernote on my Droid, works great. Haven't used it for Recipes, I'll have to look into it!
beyondcelery June 20, 2011
I started using Evernote a few months ago and absolutely adore it.
sharc June 20, 2011
there's an application called Dropbox, which gives a couple gbs for free. . . you install on the different computers you have, and once you log in can access the folders - the great thing about it, is it's one folder, mac, pc, iphone, ipad compatible. Love it!
Peter June 20, 2011
Utterly Mac compatible as software, also as a website of course. And the iPhone app works great too. And for those who become addicted as I have, there are better 3rd party apps like "Fastever" that allow for quick and dirty additions to your "notes".
ChefJune June 20, 2011
Gee, I 'm glad you posted that, Peter. I've never heard of Evernote, but now I'm going to check it out. I hope it's MAC compatible.
Peter June 20, 2011
This has come up before on Foodpickle (maybe someone can turn up the old thread?) but I recall the most popular answer was the website/iPhone app/software called Evernote.

It's not specifically designed for recipes, but it does a great job organizing all sort of information -- regardless of source.
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