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If you love cooking, chances are you have amassed a plethora of favorite recipes pulled from websites, cut out from magazines, or inherited from relatives. Finding a storage solution that lets you easily reference and file them can be a challenge, but there are plenty of great options whether you're looking for physical recipe boxes, folders, binders, or bins—or even digital recipe-organizing apps. Ahead are the best recipe organizers that can help to sort and categorize your collection.
Best Overall: Kate Spade Rainbow Plaid Recipe Book
For a combination of fashion and function, this book by Kate Spade offers a couple of ways to store your favorite recipes. There are seven divided sections (labeled breakfast, soups, sauces, appetizers, entrees, desserts, and beverages) with an ample number of pages in each section to handwrite your recipes.
If you also collect recipe cards, this elegant book has 10 clear sleeves to hold a total of 20 cards. The rainbow plaid pattern is cheerful and chic. It’s a perfect gift for a bridal shower or for any friends who enjoy cooking and could use a stylish solution to document their cookery.
Best Box: Rifle Paper Co. Recipe Box
This vintage-styled metal tin from Rifle Paper Co. is a fun choice for those who love whimsical botanical designs, the signature style of Florida-based illustrator Anna Bond. There’s a reason this type of container is a popular hand-me-down—the sturdy construction means it can hold up for generations.
This box is designed to hold standard 4 x 6-inch index cards and also includes 24 blank cards and 12 letterpress dividers to divide your collection into appetizers, breakfast, entrees, desserts, meats, seafood, and more. Available in several charming designs, this will add a little cheer to a kitchen counter or bookshelf.
Best Bin: Pendaflex Portafile File Storage Box
This no-nonsense storage box by Pendaflex is a sturdy solution for filing away recipe cards and clippings. Made of thick plastic, it is super durable and can be transported and stored without worrying about damage. It holds 12 letter-sized hanging folders that can be labeled with tabs and inserts to sort your favorite recipes, whether they’re pages from magazines, photocopied, or handwritten. The built-in handle and latch closure provide a secure closure to keep your documents protected, and its compact size makes it easy to tuck away under a desk or counter. For a bigger capacity version, find more storage with this model.
Best Folder: Meadowsweet Kitchens Accordion File Recipe Organizer
If a filing box is too bulky, you can get a similar storage solution with this accordion file organizer by Meadowsweet. Constructed of sturdy cardboard, this expanding file has room to hold hundreds of your favorite recipe clippings, recipe cards, magazine clippings, and handwritten recipe notes. There are eight pre-labeled tabs to help organize your collection and an elastic closure to help keep contents secure. Its slim profile makes it ideal for storing on a bookshelf or in a cabinet without taking up too much room, and its attractive design also means that you can leave it out on a desk and it still looks like a thoughtful decor choice.
Best Card Protectors: Better Kitchen Products Recipe Card Page Protectors
For avid recipe card collectors, the pocket page refills by Better Kitchen Products are a solid, inexpensive choice that will provide protection against spills and splatter in the kitchen. These non-glare transparent pages are meant to hold two double-sided 4 x 6-inch recipe cards and can be stored in any standard three-ring binder for easy access and storage.
Simply slide your cards into the sheet at the inner margin—they’ll stay put no matter how quickly you flip through your recipe pages. And since they come in a pack of 50, you can easily expand your collection without running out of pages too quickly.
Best Binder: C.R. Gibson Faux Leather Recipe Book
A binder is a tried-and-true solution for home cooks and professional chefs, as it’s easy and inexpensive to maintain. This set from CR Gibson is a thoughtful version of binder storage: The gender-neutral organizer is made of black leatherette printed with a gold foil design and comes with nine pre-labeled tabbed divider pages.
Also included are sheet protectors and 24 cards on which to hand-write your favorite recipes, as well as a tie-clasp envelope to store any smaller miscellaneous clippings. Fill this binder with your favorite recipes, or gift it to someone you know who wants to star a recipe collection—great for newlyweds or as a housewarming gift to anyone who is culinarily-inclined. The outside can easily be wiped clean, and the book can be stored on a shelf right next to your current cookbook collection for easy reference.
Best Recipe Organizer App: Paprika Recipe Manager for iOS, Android, Mac, or Windows
For those who prefer an online recipe organization solution, the Paprika App has been heralded as one with great functionality and user-friendliness. The built-in web browser allows you to search for recipes online and download them to save in the program. If you tend to write your own recipes, you can manually add them (and include photos, too). Timers are automatically detected in the recipe directions—simply tap on one to start it. Whether you’re cooking for two or more, you can scale ingredients to your preferred serving sizes (and you can easily convert between imperial and metric measurements as well).
Paprika also offers a Cloud Sync option, allowing you to access your recipes from anywhere—you can cook using your tablet in the kitchen, take your phone to grocery shop using the Smart Grocery List feature, and manage your recipes on your desktop computer. The app is available for iOS, Android, Mac, or Windows, so you can use the program with virtually any device.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
The author of this piece, Bernadette Machard de Gramont, specializes in global food and wine content. She personally uses the Pendaflex Portable File to sort and store the recipes she collects from her favorite cooking magazines; she stores her mom’s and grandmother’s recipes in the Rifle Paper Co. tin to hand down to the next generation of cooks in her family.