I wasn't sure where to post this, so I'll start here and trust that someone will move me if am wrong.
My wife has our family cookbook that is crammed full of recipes from various sources. Some are part of the cookbook but many others are on loose pieces of paper of various sizes, cards, and even cut out from magazines or food packages. It's a mess. When she wants to find a recipe, she has to thumb through the pile until she finds the one she wants.
I have a lot of recipes that I store on the computer in Word format and also have many that I have bookmarked.
I have Office 2003, with Word, Excel and Access. Does anyone have any suggestions as to the best way to store and retrieve these recipes? I don't know whether to type them all in Word and just keep them in a file folder, or an Access database, then we can change the amounts needed, if say we double the recipe. maybe there's another program that would be better.
I'm open to suggestions. Thanks.
There probably are some great dedicated applications for this. Certainly I keep hearing about iPhone and iPad applications for recipes...
As for using Office applications, Access or Excel make sense for recalculations, but neither handles text very elegantly. Word is attractive because of its flexible (re)formatting tools and ease of re-purposing (many applications can import from Word, or Word can export text). I lean toward using Word, placing the ingredients in a table with three columns -- amount, unit of measure, and description -- which would make that part easy to paste into Excel for use in calculations.
Thanks guys, I think I will just stick them in Word, in their own file folder, then I can do searches for specific items. Good suggestion to put ingredients in a table, then it is easy to move to Excel for recalc. Thanks.
I have been keeping recipes in Word for years now, Always thinking that one day I would actually write a cookbook. Now I think I will have something to leave my children. Anyway, Word is your best choice, As said before the formatting and import export are unbeatable. Beyond that, use Heading styles for the titles of each recipe, then you can find anything in second using the document map. Others have suggested a table of contents, but I like styles much better. Good luck, and if there are so very many from books and magazines try a scanner and OCR program. Correcting the errors will be much less onerous than typing the whole thing! Good luck!
You might also want to look at http://neatco.com/ NeatReceipts
I use a program that is called Now You're Cooking. It does all of the above mentioned wants and more. Do an internet search for Now You're Cooking. Very good program.
If you have Office 2003, did it come with OneNote? I've been using OneNote for several years and what's nice about it is that it has tabs for organizing recipe types, along with an index along the side for viewing the names of each "note". You can either enter the recipes by hand or select, drag and drop a recipe into the OneNote page keeping the formating from the original document including from web pages; it can also search through the sections for specific ingredients. Of course you can also use it for other organization tasks as each OneNote Section is in it's own "notebook". There are other features which make it a very useable piece of software and I haven't found any others that can compare to it.
Word is best for recipes
For many years I have kept all recipes in Word/Recipes/Food Type (desserts, vegetables, lamb, pork , beef. etc) I format each one to a 4" x 6" size for printing to a card. Most recipes are extremely verbose & repetitive. With careful wordsmithing & by keeping font size as low as 10 I rarely require a second card. Your friends will appreciate this when you exchange recipes.
For many years I used Mastercook - http://www.valusoft.com - but about a year ago switched to Living COokbook, which makes it very easy to capture recipes from online sources. For printed sources, scan the recipe into a PDF and then use the "capture text" tool (I use Fox IT Reader), copy and paste it into the capture tab in Living COokbook. Then you can select ingredients, procedure and other items, and LC will automatically move the data into the right spot.
If Mastercook's latest version had a similr capture feature I'd probably go back to it because of other features (better ingredient list, better categorizing, etc.).
Forgot to say that both Living Cookbook and Mastercook let you search by ingredient as well as by recipe name, and you can browse inthe different categories.
Absolutely use OneNote!!! I have all my scraps of paper, grandmother's recipe cards, clippings, etc. scanned in -- plus, I can copy-paste anything I find on the web, and change it to my preferences. As a finishing touch, I always add a picture of what it is (whether it came with the recipe, or I find it by searching). Then, I just print out the recipe, stick it on my frig, and I'm ready to cook (and no one is asking "what's for dinner?") I tab by food types, and the search feature does the rest! It's a dream.
Check out shopncook its free for 45 days then you have to pay for it. I dont know what happens after 45 days as I paid for it after 2 weeks
Originally Posted by donebb
This is how I have handled all my recipes of fifty-five years!!!!!!
I use a spreadsheet with columns: Name, Storage, #, Comments/Keywords
It’s as simple as that! It has worked for me!
The Storage column is used for identifying where I can locate the recipe. I have assigned each cookbook and plastic binder (envelope style is what I use…could be a recipe box, plain old box, whatever….,) a shortened name so I know where the recipe is stored! Under the # column, I use either a page number (if from a cookbook) or as I add recipes, I assign a number. I do NOT categorize any recipe other than by number!
Under Comments/Keywords I add some of the ingredients so I can search or filter. Example: sour cream!!!! If a recipe calls for sour cream, I add that as a keyword since I usually don’t use the whole container at one time. I like to use it up so will search or filter for sour cream which gives me other recipes in which I can use the sour cream. You could do that with spices or other ‘odd’ ingredients. I have used that a lot!!!!!
If you have a computer in your kitchen, this method would work great! I have to print the list out alphabetically by recipe name and keep it handy for reference. I always put extra paper in the binder to pencil in the recipe data as I come across a new one…I don’t print it out for each new recipe as I have over 550 recipes!!!!! But it allows me to ‘file’ the recipe clipping away and get on with cooking! If you have lots of cookbooks (I don’t), you will have to know where they are stored but at least you don’t have clippings and notes all over!!!!! It’s a job the first time…but isn’t any spreadsheet? Dotty Baumann
OneNote! If you don't have it, buy it, it's worth it. OneNote 2007 is improved over 2003. I haven't used 2010.