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Recipe Organization

Recipe Organization

Keeping up with what I have cooked, what I want to cook, what worked, what didn’t has seemed impossible to me over the last four years. It’s one of the reasons why past bentos were so full of rotisserie chicken, spaghetti, and chili. These items are easy, quick to think of, and cause little to no confusion on my part. However with the absence of tomato sauce in my life these days, two of my three go-to lunch packing foods are out of the running. And a girl cannot live on rotisserie chicken alone. Believe me, there are times when I think that’s exactly what I’m doing.

As I got myself back in order from my 3 month blogging hiatus, I realized that I needed some order and control back in my life.  Step one was a major house cleaning and purge.  YAY!  Now to just keep it up.  The second was a wee bit of bento organization, though really it was refrigerator tracking.  The last step was to organize my recipes in such a way that worked for me.  I did some online research and found a blog with a great post on organizing recipes.  And it gave me an idea of how this should work for me.

Off to Barnes and Noble I went to look for two hardbacked journals.  It was fate I tell you.  Fate that this was mean to be.  Why else would they have journals in the NEB color scheme?  At $4.95 a piece, they were well worth the $10 I spent.  $2 purchased the sticker letters from a craft section.  And a couple more bucks got me the page markers I needed to divide the journals.

Recipe Organization

Each journal is divided into the major sections that work for me: chicken, pork, beef, seafood, vegetarian, breakfast, snacks, sides, bread, desserts, and other.  Basically, these journals are indexes to everything else in my life. I’m a librarian and appreciate the use of a good index.  I list a recipe in its correct section in the correct journal with a citation on where the recipe can be found.  Could I get much nerdier?  Probably not.

It’s already worked for me.  I’ve been referring to the “Recipes to Try” book this week to find something to cook.  And I found something.  And it was a successful recipe try!  I think things are swinging back in my favor.  Onwards and upwards from here!


  1. Sarah says:

    Those are adorable and clever. =)
    Sarah recently posted..New Recipes: Almond Crusted Chicken Breasts and Cream SpinachMy Profile

  2. Ellen says:

    I use several 3 ring binders, which are way more flexible. I can add and take away recipes as my tastes/needs change. I print or copy or handwrite and then slip them into plastic page protectors. I also make notes on the inside overs of cookbooks with an index to recipes I’ve tried and liked. It makes it easy to flip open a book and see what’s worked for me there.
    Ellen recently posted..Making Fudge: Substituting Chocolate Chips for Baking ChocolateMy Profile

    • Jenn says:

      Thanks for the suggestions Ellen. The more suggestions the better for my readers!

      I have to differ on the opinion on the 3 ring binders though. While I like them for storing my recipes, I find it a pain to flip through them to look for a promising recipe or to look through the index of my cookbooks to find something. I think it’s just due to the nature of my professional training.

      One index to rule them all!

  3. Thien-Kim says:

    I love the colors of those journals. Nothing like a brand new blank book to get you inspired. I’m looking forward to hear how this works for you. I could use some new food inspiration.
    Thien-Kim recently posted..Goddess Leonie’s 2012 Creating My Goddess Year (Review)My Profile

    • Jenn says:

      Oh I understand about needing food inspiration. I totally, totally understand. I’m finally feeling like I’m coming out of a recipe drought!

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