Sue Thornton
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Panstoria Software

Family Cookbook Project

My last article talked about preserving family recipes and putting them into a printed recipe book for family members.  There are many great uses for this type of unique gift.  Think about family reunions, or a wedding gift for family members.

Your mother was a great cook and she had all those great recipes written down on scraps of paper and shoved into a box but not organized, how will you ever get them put together in an organized way?  When you decide to do a family recipe book there are steps that need to be taken to ensure the book is organized and functional.  Here are some of the steps you should follow:

  1. Organize your old recipe cards, cut outs and those scraps of paper.
  2. Put them in categories such as:  meat, poultry, desserts, appetizers, side dishes, etc.
  3. Scan all these items.  Put them into folders labeled like the categories above.
  4. Then create another folder for the stories and pictures of how your family enjoyed the various recipes.

I talked about these steps in my last article, so now we need to discuss actually organizing the Family Cookbook Project.

We all long for the welcoming sight of a buffet table simmering in familiar dishes at a family gathering.  Sights, sounds and smells motivate us when we are getting ready for a family meal.  The second helpings, the full stomach and the laughter of good conversation that we remember long after the holiday meal. 

Here are a few suggestions on how to really begin organizing all those recipes into a Family Cookbook Project. 

  • You want to have everyone organize and scan THEIR recipes, take photos if possible
  • Discuss with family members how you want to organize the book
  • Will you combine the duplicates into one recipe or pick out the ones thought best
  • Create a family history with photos of the dishes and who originally cooked that dish


No matter how you decide to produce the cookbook, someone needs to organize it.  It can take a lot of time, be loads of work on the part of the organizer, but also become a rewarding experience for the entire family.  As a group make some decisions like the following before going further.

  • Determine the size of the project and set deadlines weeks ahead.
  • Set up reminders to follow-up with each contributor.
  • Will you want to produce a printed copy of this book?
  • Decide the number of recipes you want submitted from each family member.


These are great tips and there are more in this series.  Stay tuned for more information and further breakdowns of the various steps that are outlined in this article.

You can sign up for my newsletter on my website, and also get more information about my company.

If you want to do this yourself, you can check out this new content with Artisan software through my page:




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