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My mother and grandmother have been collecting recipes for years- tried and true, tested and delicious. They're on cute, quaint handwritten notecards, or they come in the form of magazine clippings. Some aren't even written down; my mother's pie crust recipe is the best, but it's only in her head.

This might have worked for her, but the notecards don't work for my siblings and I. Even if we know where to find them, stuffed tightly in the recipe box or in the little three ring binder or taped behind the flour canister, there's only one of each of them, and us three kids are moving out- so the recipe box in the cupboard doesn't cut it when we want to make that great banana bread for our friends in the dorm. Even when we're at home, it can be so much trouble to find a recipe that we just print one off the internet and take our chances.

With a little prompting from my mother, I set out to compile our family recipes into a beautiful, editable, and infinitely more shareable digital document. Though it took a whole summer, I highly recommend making your own book of family recipes. It's been a nostalgic and rewarding experience, and the output cookbook is indispensable.

What I share here are a few tips to guide you through the process.

Step 1: Materials

Mandatory:
1. Your disorganized but delicious family recipes
2. A good word processor. I used Microsoft Word.

Optional:
3. A scanner, ideally one that does well with photos and- even better- one with OCR capabilities (or Adobe Acrobat)
4. Internet
5. Printer
6. "Book" binding materials

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Thanks for sharing this! I am making a cookbook and now I have something to work with. I needed a place to start!
<p>I also started a family cookbook, and because of my mistake of not printing mine on time, they cancelled the old cookbook and now they will not let me retrieve all of my family's recipes. some are over 100 years old. will never be able to get them again....</p>
<p>ValorieM, Oh, this is so sad that so many old recipes were lost~ I would try and be persistent, if it has not been a real long time. Customer service is not the always the best place to request something. Perhaps doing a little research on the companies top dogs might produce some type of resolution. You might be surprised how contacting the right person could help you. Pm me if you need some ideas~ I wish you the best~ </p><p>sunshiine~</p>
<p><a href="http://www.instructables.com/member/ValorieM" rel="nofollow">ValorieM</a> made it! (author) <a href="http://www.instructables.com/member/sunshiine" rel="nofollow">sunshiine</a> <a rel="nofollow">Reply</a> a few seconds ago <br></p><p>I also started a family cookbook, and because of my mistake of not printing mine on time, they cancelled the old cookbook and now they will not let me retrieve all of my family's recipes. some are over 100 years old. will never be able to get them again....</p>
<p>make sure and copy you book or you may never be able to access your recipes again. Mine are in the old cookbook this company had, and I did not copy them as I should have. Now they will not let me retrieve them. needless to say I will not be making a new book................</p>
<p>Thank you for sharing this guide. I have been wanting to do this with my mom/grandmothers/aunts recipes for a long time. Now I have a place to start.</p>
Wish I had seen this before I put together a family recipe book for a reunion several years ago. I've written numerous recipes, but you had some great ideas here! Thanks for sharing

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Bio: A maker, addicted to sewing, cooking, and crafting. Sometimes an engineer. Spent a summer at Instructables; got a degree in E: Neural Engineering at Olin ... More »
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