LOOKING for: anyone ever make their own cookbook

deedeebakerFebruary 11, 2009

I would really like to make a cookbook with my own recipes plus recipes that are tried and true for all over and give to my friends and family. Has anyone here ever done this? I'm just really looking for someplace to type the recipes and then print them out. I would get some type of binder to put them in and decorate it myself. Thanks for any help.

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Try word....or publisher. If you use pubklisher it's easy to put in pictures on the page.
Then print it and slip intio a binder.
Linda C

    Bookmark   February 11, 2009 at 4:22PM
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You can go to:


To get more info and prices. We used Morris some years back and was very satisfied. They sent a sample kit, and their covers were very nice.

Good Luck!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2009 at 4:57PM
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Yes, I use Microsoft Word and have all my recipes in a binder. It's easy to print them out, and I even add special Notes or Tips, which makes the recipes read like a diary of sorts. I usually like to make a note of when I made it, what the Source is, and the general consensus. Of course it doesn't get added if it isn't good! I can also add photos if I have any, and often re-write the recipe after I've made it so I can add extra instructions if needed. I kept wishing for a book of my own, until I realized I could make it myself. I love having a cookbook that is so personalized.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2009 at 5:16PM
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I use Microsoft Word. You can Insert pictures of the dish too. Just save the picture under "My Pictures". When in Word, click on "Insert", "from file", then click on where you saved the picture. It's very easy. I usually insert the picture in a Text Box so then I can move it anywhere on the page (I undo the lines of the box).

I got them bound at Staples.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2009 at 10:51PM
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Nancy zone 6

I also use Microsoft Word, inserting pictures like khandi suggested. I just put mine in a 3 ring binder with each page in a plastic sheet protector. I'm messy :)

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 8:50AM
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Not meaning to counter other's suggestions, but why not use a true Recipe program, such as Mastercook to store your recipes in? If you're going to expend the time and effort to type them in the computer, why not use a program DESIGNED for recipes. Mastercook allows you to insert photos in the recipes too, but you can also do nutritional analysis on a recipe, automatically scale the recipe up or down based upon the number of servings you want, assign recipes to one or more categories, for easy cataloging and retrieval, search recipes by title, ingredient, category, source (or any combination of search terms) and yes, even print out a formatted cookbook directly from the program. Rather than wasting a ton of paper printing all my recipes out and keeping them in a binder, they are all stored in the Mastercook program on my computer. If I need a recipe, I'll print it out when I need it and not worry if it gets wet/damaged while I'm cooking, I'll just dispose of it when I'm done cooking.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 12:19PM
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I have made several. I always use those plastic page protector sheets to put them in before they go into the binder. I also use Word for them.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 3:14PM
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I second tom_k_mo's idea. I, too, use Mastercook. I really like the ease of typing in a recipe, and love the way you can download a recipe straight from the 'net into it. As I sometimes cook & bake for sale to the public, the fact that it can tell me the exact cost of a dish, either per serving or for the complete dish, is also a plus. And I can supply a complete nutritional analysis for any customers with any kind of health issues, such as diabetes.
No, I am in no way associated with the makers of Mastercook. I just think it is wonderful software.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 5:27PM
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Thanks for all of the great information. The idea of using the mastercook is a good idea. I recently told a friend of my idea who does scrapbooking and asked her if she has ever done a cookbook with the scrapbooking ideas. I wouldn't mind trying something like that as I think the whole decorating thing would really add to the book. Just wondering if anyone has ever done a cookbook that way.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 4:03PM
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deedee, I haven't put together my 6" x 6" scrapbook recipe pages yet, but I intend to soon. I only have about 20 pages though. I joined some recipe swaps at splitcoaststampers and we exchange with a group. We do about 10 of the same page and send them out to a "hostess", who then in turn sends all of us one of each of the cards that everyone did. Let me see if I can find a few examples.

Here is a link that might be useful: recipe swap cards

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 7:56PM
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Just to clarify, I purchase 6" x 6" plastic sleeves with holes for a 6x6 scrapbook binder from Stampin'Up. The pages can get pretty thick with layers and embellishments, so I normally just put one recipe per page rather than 2 recipes back to back.

I also want to do a cook book for my two kids of all my family's favorite recipes, plus anything I copied from my Hungarian grandma. My son does some cooking, but my daughter does not so I am afraid that our heirloom recipes may end with me if I don't get them on paper....lol! My 10-year old granddaughter loves to bake and cook, so there is hope that these recipes will live on. There are also a lot of digital scrapbooking sites, and I'm sure there would be places to upload recipes and then import clip art if you wanted to do a scrap book type recipe book.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 8:05PM
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Another alternative is to make 4 x 6 recipe cards and put in a decorative recipe box, although these may be harder to mass produce than a recipe page to insert in binders. I thought this was a cute index card for "desserts" if you were doing a box of 4 x 6 recipe cards.

Here is a link that might be useful: Desserts Index Card

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 8:43PM
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I've used both Word (a word publishing application/program) and MasterCook (a recipe program).

MasterCook allows one to print their own recipes in several different formats, some formats with your choice of their stock art or your own photo files.

Word allows one to be much more creative in every aspect of the recipe page design.

If you want to give your own personally "authored" cookbooks to your family and friends, take your file to a local copier/printer. They'll tell you how they can print and bind it as a book (most can do many beautiful options). The cost is a little steep at local copiers, especially if you're having less than 50-100 printed. A local copier can work with Word and a few other programs so you can take your book to them on a disk. But I'm pretty sure they can't work with a MasterCook file.

Last year, I did 25 copies of my "Twelve Days of Pasta Sauces" as a Christmas gift for friends and family. It was 30 pages with hard front and back cover and spiral binding and cost me about $12 per book. Not cheap but it was a nice book and made for a nice gift.

You also can look into Lulu.com, a publish-on-demand web ompany that will print your "book" in any number of ways and can do it almost always more cheaply than your local copier.


    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 9:41PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

I have a wonderful "coffee table" book by Claire Jones titled "Monet's Table." It is a pictorial history of the artists life and includes his paintings and recipes. It inspired me to do the same for my family. I am a creative artist and use that creativity in my recipes.

The biggest regret I have is letting my grandparents die without getting all that history and all those recipes. My mom was NOT a cook! OMG! All she ever cooked was meatloaf, mac and cheese, and ewwwww salmon patties. OMG I forgot that dreaded liver!!

I am using Word for my book. It will take me a long time, but I keep it in my head and try to photograph the family enjoying my recipes at get together s (as is pictured in the Monet book). The one they will remember fondly is cranking the ice cream in the hot summer by the swimming pool. One cranking, one sitting, everyone supervising, and then the licking of the paddle! I've got all the recipes in the book so far. We kick em up every year.

I love to grow my own herbs, cure my own olives, and make my own wine from things that we grow. I will include all that in the book, and I will illustrate as much as I can with watercolor and other mediums.

I like the idea you give here of sleeving the pages in plastic. Kinkos will plastic coat pages also for a price, but that is an option, and they will bind it all also.

It's a project, but a fun one! Love all your ideas!!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2009 at 8:10PM
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desertdance i love the idea of pictures with the recipes- especially the one with the ice cream. That is such a great idea. I knew this was the right place to post with my idea and need for help because there are so many creative minds here.
gardenguru love the 12 days of pasta sauces cookbook. What a great gift idea.
blizlady I think I might use your idea for my niece who just loves my desserts and always wants to make me some (haven't seen any yet -lol)
I do have a ton of recipes so this is going to take me quite awhile. But I'm one of the millions of unemployed people right now so I think I have plenty of time to start moving on this project. I will put all of these great ideas to work. Thanks everybody!!!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 9:10AM
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I made a cookbook for our family last year with about 300 recipes using Word. First I set up a Cookbook folder on my hard drive, with sub-folders for each gereral category of recipes (Main Dishes, Sweets, etc.), and a third level of folders (Chicken, Meatless, Pork, etc. under Main Dishes, for example). Then when I typed out the recipe, I could just save it to the appropriate folder.

I also wrote "The Story of the Recipe" at the end of each - where or from whom I got it, a special occasion when I made it, or other history or information I thought would be interesting. As I made some of the dishes, I'd take a photo of them and insert it in the recipe file.

The biggest problem I had was knowing when to stop because I could have kept adding more and never finished it. Finally, I just copied the entire Cookbook File onto a CD or Flash Drive for each of the recipients because they all had computers. I didn't print them out because that way, they could be saved to the hard drive, used off the CD or flash drive, printed as a recipe was needed or taken to one of office stores to be printed in whatever format they wanted.

I've been working on Volume II, which has all the recipes from Volume I, photos added for some of those recipes, plus the ones that everyone keeps telling me I forgot to include.

Have fun!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 8:15PM
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ruthanna I'm running into the same problem with the amount of recipes. There is a point where you just have to stop. Your idea is great. I like the idea of the story of the recipe and also photos. Never thought of taking pics of the recipes. I'll add that to my list..thanks :)

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 9:10AM
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No, but I just wanted to say I'm seeing a whole different and exciting era for cookbook colletors coming, just when I was sadly thinking cookbook publishing and use were likely in decline.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 3:38PM
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I have this software and would highly recommend it to anyone that is thinking of a personal cookbook or publishing a cookbook for a group. The software is very user friendly. You can add pictures and it has lots of designs for front and back covers.


    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 12:44PM
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