Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Recipe Organization

I have a new project of Recipe Organization.  Every week I am left with nothing to fix for suppers and feel overwhelmed with the prospect of thinking about what I should cook when I go to the store.  The results of this have been bad: rather than meal planning, I simply buy every ingredient I could possibly need to make any meal that I could want!

I've found that for us, the better system is to buy per recipe rather than stocking up on staples for the pantry and keeping it up because since we are only two people, food turns bad and we never use the staples. 

This weekend I decided to try to think of a solution: I created an Excel file and started to think of all of the recipes I know that we love.  Then, I write down the basic ingredients so that by copying and pasting the spreadsheet onto my grocery list, I can quickly and easily create a meal plan for the week.  We really do not eat very many "meals" because if I make something, we have so many leftovers, but I think that it will make things easier for me.  Another plus would be that I can examine what we eat and hopefully get a better variety of food in our diets.

I started by thinking of Mexican-inspired dishes.  How do you organize your recipes and think of things to make every week?  Sometimes I feel like organization can be a time-sucker in itself and then I never use it in real life.  Thoughts?


kisa said...

My organization suggestion would be to ensure that meatloaf is on the list!

Anonymous said...

I need to do something like this. Planning meals in my house is a little tricky because my husband doesn't eat leftovers (except for roast, or chili). -Charlene

Kathy said...

Oh, Abbie, I love to think about topics like this! My system here is very casual though, and involves very simple meals and lots of leftovers! I hate wasting food and with only two people here, when I buy and cook things, I do not mind eating them day after day. I realize most people don't want to eat like that, however!

Sarah said...

I have a tough time with this as well. I get recipe ideas from so many places - Pinterest, blogs, magazines, cookbooks - that it's hard to organize it into any useful system. I do have a binder where I put things that we have had a number of times and really like, just so I can always find those. That doesn't help at all with cookbooks or with random pages I tear out of magazines, but it's the best I've come up with at this point.

Katie said...

i use software called "The Living Cookbook" and it's pretty snazzy. :) if i had more time, or if jeremy enjoyed cooking, it would get a lot more use...but for now it's hanging out waiting for me to graduate in august. There's meal planning, a way for you to keep track of what's in your pantry & build a grocery list based on the recipes you've picked...there's also a way to pick ingredients & search for a recipe you can make with what you have on hand. lots of neat features! I think i paid around 30$ for it, and have been in the process of logging my recipes on there. (it comes with quite a few, but you can add your own). It estimates calories too, if you are watching that sort of thing.