Tuesday’s Tips Week 2: Organizing Your Recipes and Shopping Lists



I hope you enjoyed my first week of Tuesday’s Tips that I am co-writing with Angie from Life as Mom Knows It. If you didn’t read the first week, I recommend you read that first because today’s post will continue where we left off. You can read the first post HERE and the second part HERE.

Now Angie already started a discussion about where to keep your recipes but I will give a brief description from my point of view. I will admit that this has been a huge project of mine for years now. My hopes are that 2012 will be the year that I will get completely organized, especially with my recipes.

My favorite ways to organize them are the following:

*Hat box—These are the recipes I cut out from the magazines/newspapers that I’m dying to try, recipes that I’ve printed from the Internet, or recipes that I’ve received from friends and family. I do hope to get these all in a binder that I would have them protected and easy to sort through. The hat box works well because they are never lost BUT is a time waster since I have to dig through the box.

*Folder in my email—I mentioned that I subscribe to a few recipe newsletters and if they send a recipe that I know my family would like, I move that email to my “recipes” folder in my email account. It is great because it is never lost, I can use the “search tool” to find something specific and I can access it from any computer. Using a tablet or laptop is easy in the kitchen and then the recipe is right there in front of me.

*Computer software—In the past, I have used a recipe computer software that I received as a gift. It was really great and SUPER easy to use! I apologize but I can’t remember the exact name of it but there are several available and they all work similarly. The problems I had with these is taking the time to type all of the recipes into the computer and also having them on one computer. When my laptop crashed, I had lost all of my recipes that I typed in there including some favorites. Maybe I should have backed it up somewhere else but honestly I just didn’t think of it. If you do go with this route, make sure you back up your recipes on an external hard drive or another location.

*Cookbooks—I have a few cookbooks that I just keep on the shelf with some of the pages flagged. It makes it easy to find my favorites.

Other ways to organize your recipes include:

*Old fashioned recipe box
*Scanning pages from cookbooks and saving them on your computer labeled by food types

What ways do you organize your recipes?

We will also discuss making a shopping list in this post.

I have done my shopping lists two ways. I’ll share my old way (before kids) and my new way (after kids). Notice that I like things simple since my family has a busy schedule all of the time!

Old Way: The old way started with choosing 5 meals for the week that my husband and I wanted to eat. In an excel spreadsheet I’d type those meals in a column on the side. Then I’d type in any ingredients that we did not have in the house for those meals in column next to it, adding in extras like produce, milk, eggs and other staples. Finally I’d print the list to take to the store.
New Way: The new way started when I had a need to save more money (because I have 3 healthy, hungry boys to feed) and had 3 extra picky eaters. Now I make my lists from the sale items or items that I have high coupons for. I usually go to 2-3 stores in a week for my groceries. I make a list for each individual store and sort my list by categories so it is easy to get through the store and not miss anything. The categories I choose to sort my items are usually dairy, packaged, frozen, bread, meat, beverages, baby items, other.

Angie from Life As Mom Knows It has the second half of this post HERE! Enjoy! Remember to tell us your thoughts about our Tuesday’s Tips series.

How do you write your grocery lists?

Join us again on March 6th for our next post on Saving Money Using Price Match Ups!

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