Thursday, August 20, 2009

The BEST Family Cookbook

I LOVE receiving and experimenting with new recipes from all of my friends and family. To share my love of this with those around me, I made a family cookbook for Christmas.

As you can imagine, the cost of printing a full-color, bound cookbook with 30+ pages can become very expensive, very fast! Especially if you are making 25 or more of them like I needed to. In order to make this project a realistic (and affordable) one, I had to really rack my brain. This is what I came up with.....
A Photo Cookbook!

Occasionally, places like Inkleys will run promos and do $.05 or $.06 prints. High quality photo paper is water-resistant, wipes off easily if it gets spilled on, and is durable. It is very hard to beat $.05 for a full color cookbook page!

This is how I did it.

I emailed, called and wrote to as many family members as I could. I asked each of them for 2-3 of their favorite recipes. Once I received the recipes, I used a photo editing program and typed the recipes up and saved them as a .jpeg file.
I then created a cover for the recipe book. I used family photos for our cover, but you could do it however you'd like.
After typing all of the recipes up, I sent them to be printed. Once I received them, I put them in order in regards to main dishes, soups, breads, desserts, etc.

I then punched a hole in the top of the photos. Using a binder ring, I placed all of the pages onto the ring to secure.
That's it! This was SO fun to do and everyone loved it. My total cost per book was under $3! If anyone would like to make these for Christmas and needs help with the cover, send me a quick note! I'd be so happy to offer some help.


  1. Can I just tell you that I was thinking about doing a cookbook for my friends & family this year as part of their Christmas gifts and while I was walking through Costco, I totally came to the same conclusion that it would be a lot cheaper to print the recipes as photos! It's tons cheaper and they're always the perfect size. I'm over joyed to know that it worked for you. Will you let me know which photo editing program you used?? I have PhotoShop Elements, but I'm still only playing with it, I'm not all that sure how to manipulate it all that well. Thanks for any help!

  2. I use Photoshop CS3. I have been printing things on photo paper for YEARS! I love it because it is water resistant, fairly sturdy and it is inexpensive. You will soon find that a lot of my crafty ideas use photo paper. :o) The reading flashcard post also was done on photo paper. Good luck!