How to Organize Recipes You Find Online
As you are reading through all those amazing recipe indexes posted yesterday, you might be wondering how you can possibly keep all the recipes you want to try organized. Today’s guest poster is here to help you with that. Tiffany from Eat at Home has a wonderful food blog where she shares many delicious recipes and printable meal plans (complete with shopping list!) each week. Welcome Tiffany!
I’ve noticed in the last couple of years that nearly all the recipes that make their way into my life, come to me over the internet. I frequently visit recipe blogs. Readers and friends email me their favorite recipes. I even gather recipes shared on forums where I’m an active member.
All of this presents the challenge of organizing them. There are lots of ways to go about organizing online recipes. Some people like to use websites like delicious.com to bookmark their favorites. Others print the recipes and put them in a binder. I’m going to share my favorite way to organize digital recipes.
But before I get to that, I want to share the biggest help:
I am very selective about the recipes I store. I only keep recipes that I know I will want to cook. It doesn’t happen often, but if I make a recipe and don’t like it, I delete the recipe. No need to keep something I never want to make again. This keeps my recipe storage clutter-free and places value on each recipe chosen for my digital recipe box.
My tool of choice for recipe organization is Microsoft OneNote. (Disclaimer: Microsoft doesn’t know who I am, what I cook or what I write. I only share about their product because I like it.)
OneNote enables me to keep notebooks for endless topics. I have a personal notebook with a section for recipes. When I find a recipe I want to try I can either print the entire page to OneNote, so that it looks just like the website or do a simple copy/paste of just the recipe, which is what I prefer. With either method the original website link is also included so I know where the recipe came from.
After copying into my notebook, I write on the recipe in a different color font. I make notes about changes I want to make or when I’d like to try the dish. I also record how I actually cooked the recipe and how it turned out. I often make changes to recipes and I love that I can write directly on the page in OneNote, just like in a real cookbook.
There are two alternatives to OneNote. Both are free. Springpad and Evernote offer many options for keeping track of things you find online, including recipes. I have only played with these options briefly. Springpad does have a way for you to make notes directly on recipes you save. I couldn’t find a way to do that in Evernote, but it may be possible. Also, both of these services are accessible from your phone. That could be very handy while in the grocery store. It would be nice to check ingredients for a recipe I left at home.
That’s how I organize digital recipes. How do you organize yours?
Tiffany shares lots of recipes, menus and complete grocery lists on her website, Eat at Home, Everyday Food for Busy People. She’s always on the look out for a new recipe or dinner idea to fix for her husband and four kids.