In Organizing Your Recipes – Part I I shared 5 steps to organizing your recipes using my organizing acronym SPASM. Following those steps you should have all of your recipes into sheet protectors by category with a tab in front of each main category.

Now we will label each tab. I use the white tabs that come with the insertable plastic dividers. I print out the category name on my label maker and stick the label onto one of the tabs. I wrap the excess label around the back of the tab if there is any so that I don’t spend time cutting down the length. But, you could write your category on the tab or print out labels on card stock and cut them out. Here is a picture of my tabs.

Notice that I have BARS separate from cakes and cookies. In my recipe box I would always wonder which category my lemon bar recipe or my Loui’s Ooey Gooeys recipe would be under. I LOVE it that I can have my own tab for BARS!!!!! That is the great thing about customizing your binder. It fits YOU!

Next, I wanted them to look great. I went on my computer to create a cover and a spine for the binder. I found an attractive photo and font and made the cover. I printed it on photo paper which I think makes a huge difference in the appearance.

Then I used a text box, adjusted the size to match the spine’s width and length and typed out the categories in each binder. I wanted to easily see which binder I needed to pull off my shelf to find the recipe I would be looking for.

Now your binders are ready for your shelf. I keep mine in a cabinet but am considering where I could put them out because they make me so happy! 🙂

The great thing about a binder for your recipes is that you can use various size sheet protectors to add recipes. Here is a recipe printed off the computer in an 8 1/2 X 11 sheet protector. You may have a lot of recipes like that. GREAT! Just insert those behind the right tab.
What if you print a new recipe off or rip an article out of a magazine that you want to try? I would suggest you put it in the tab folder before inserting it into a page protector. That way when you plan out your next week’s menu you will see that you have a new recipe to try and will schedule it into your menu!

This weekend I was craving my favorite Bran Muffins so I pulled out my binder and under BREAD I found it! It was so fast and enjoyable just looking for the recipe! My daughter helped my make them. I didn’t even take the recipe card out. I just left the binder out on the stove. All the recipe cards are protected behind plastic.
PLEASE share with me how you organize your recipes. And, of course, send pictures of your new binders if this post has motivated you to organize your recipes!!
As promised in Part I here is my favorite bran muffin recipe…
Simply Squared Away’s Bran Muffins
In mixing bowl stir bran and milk. Let stand 1-2 minutes.
2 1/2 cups Bran Flake cereal
1 1/4 cup milk
Add egg and oil to bran mixture stirring.
1 egg
1/4 cup oil
In separate bowl mix dry ingredients.
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup white flour
1/2 t salt
1 T baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
(I add 1/4 cup ground flax seeds)
Mix dry ingredients with wet JUST until combined. Put into muffin tins. Bake at 400 degrees for 18 minutes. Eat fresh and hot with butter.

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