How to make a recipe binder.
You want to know what the biggest game changing with Meal Planning has been for me??? My Recipe Binder! I made my first recipe binder a few years ago and I still use it every single day. This article is all about teaching you how to make a recipe binder for painless meal planning, and includes some free recipe binder printables to help you make your own binder! Yay!
What is a Recipe Binder?
A recipe binder is a binder where all of your recipes are organized into one simple spot. Instead of having 5 cookbooks and hundreds of recipe pins saved, you can print off all of your tried and true recipes and keep them organized in one simple spot.
The recipes that you put into this binder should be ones that you have tried multiple times. These are the recipes that you want in your regular cooking routine.
“We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.”
How Does a Recipe Binder Help With Meal Planning?
Meal Planning can be made so much easier when you use your binder.
Here’s how I Meal Plan using my Recipe Binder:
- Pull out my Binder and look at the Meal Ideas I have previously written down.
- Choose a few meals to make throughout the week, writing them down on my Meal Planning worksheet (free meal planing printable below).
- Look through the recipes in my binder to find the ingredients I will need to buy at the store that work.
- Jot the ingredients down on the shopping list.
- And done!
See how easy that was?????
When you meal plan with a recipe binder it takes out the stress of wondering:
- What should I make this week?
- What foods do we like?
- What do I need to buy at the store?
You can make your own recipe binder using my free recipe binder printables! To make a recipe binder you will need:
- A Binder. I recommend a binder between 1″ to 2″, depending on how many recipes you will be putting in it.
- Page protectors. Don’t skip this step! Page protectors will keep your recipes fresh for a long time and can be wiped clean. (when I cook, it gets real messy, real fast!)
- Pocket Dividers. Dividers in the binder are great, they will help you find all of your food sections quickly. I also love having dividers with pockets, as a place to put all of my random recipes when I don’t have time to organize them into page protectors.
- Recipes. Spend a few hours finding all of your favorite recipes. Don’t forget to look through cookbooks, pinterest, or magazines. Just make sure to only choose the recipes you have tried multiple times and love. The point of the recipe binder is to have one spot for your favorite recipes. You want to be able to open it up and know every recipe inside is a good one.
- Recipe Binder Printables. You can grab these for free by signing up for my newsletter below.
Putting The Recipe Binder Together
Now, for the fun part, putting the recipe binder together! Fortunately this is so easy to do too!
First off, slide the Favorite Recipes cover into the front of your binder. It’s always fun to see something pretty from the beginning.
Next, search through all of your cook books and favorite recipes and collect the recipes you want in your binder. You can print these out from the internet, make a copy from your favorite cookbook, or reuse recipes you already have printed. Feel free to grab my favorite recipes here.
Once you have found all of your most loved recipes take some time to put them and your Recipe Binder printables into page protectors. This is a great activity to have your kids help with or to do while watching a movie!
Next, take out your pocket dividers and write the different categories you want in your binder onto each tab. A few of the categories I have in my binder are:
- Side Dish
- Crock Pot
Lastly, put all of your recipes, recipe binder printables, and dividers into your binder. Organize them in the way that will make the most sense to you! I included a blank category so that you can personalize it for the recipes you use most.
Don’t forget to use the Meal Ideas printables. These are really the secret sauce to quick meal planning.
Write down all of the recipes that you chose to include in your binder (remember, these should all be recipes you have already tried and loved) and put these papers at the front of your recipe binder. The next time you can’t think of what to make for dinner, just look at the Meal Ideas in your binder!
That’s it! Your recipe binder is complete! Now, it’s time to use it regularly. Here are a few tips for getting the most out of your recipe binder:
- Put it somewhere you will see it often. I keep mine on my cookbook shelf, right next to the kitchen. This makes it easy to grab, and also helps me remember to actually pull it out and use it (which is important….for obvious reasons…..)
- Set a specific day each week when you will pull out your recipe binder and meal plan. The day I have chosen is on Sunday afternoons. I am almost always home this day and it’s a great way for me to start the week organized.
- Update your binder regularly. As the years go by you will hopefully find new recipes you enjoy, and maybe a few you tire off. Make sure you pull out your binder every now and then, throw out the recipes you don’t enjoy anymore, and add your new favorites.
Need more help meal planning? Check out my article, Start Meal Planning For The Complete Beginner, where I share all of my best tips for beginners to make a successful meal plan.
Alright! It’s your turn! Grab your free Recipe Binder printables below to make your own Recipe Binder today!
Need recipes for your binder????
Are you needing some new, fresh recipes to try? Something easy to make that your family will be sure to love??
Check out my recipe ebook! Mel’s Home Cooking contains over 60 of my favorite, easy, and family friendly recipes.
Want to make rolls, but don’t have time to roll them out??? Try the fairy rolls!
Looking for something different, yet easy, to make your family for breakfast? You will love the Hootenany pancakes!
Are you tired of the same old dinners, but don’t like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen? Try my chicken pesto pasta recipe!
These recipes have all been in my kitchen for decades and I am so excited to share them with you! You can learn more about Mel’s Home Cooking ebook here.