How do you store your cookbooks?

Joined Jan 29, 2000
I was so anxious to find solutions to my recipe storage problems when I saw this thread,but I see we are all in about he same shape.Chiffonade you are really well organized;I admire that!

We moved last year and I did try to get rid of some books and magazine; I would put them in a box to give away but at the end of the day most of them were back out because I would think of a really neat recipe I had made at one time,sooo I HAD to KEEP it.

We have downsized so I don't have as much space for my many many books here;I have a few (lots) here and there on shelves;I sure would love to organize them someday.

I have the "Grand Diplome Cooking Course"books;there are 20 in this series that I aquired about 30 years ago;they are the best(great recipes and lots ot informative reading).

Pete I also have the MasterCook recipe program;I'm in the process of writing a recipe book (family recipes for my children)it's a fun project.

And I agree there is nothing better than to curl up with a good recipe book;I always keep a couple inthe car ;if I'm stuck in traffic or having to wait for someone my books help me relax.

So if someone comes up with a plan let me know but PLEASE don't tell me I have to get rid of them.

Joined Jan 10, 2002
I love cookbooks. I cannot keep from getting more. In fact, I just purchased a recipe book with 50 recipes for biscotti (my momster is very fond of biscotti). One on pot pies is on the way to my house at this very moment. All my cook books are on shelves in my bedroom. My MasterCook on the computer (in my bedroom) has thousands of favorites and ones that await trial; I regularly do RecipeSource on line. I like the MC on the computer because I can do a regular search when I have a particular ingredient that needs to be used. This goes for the RecipeSource as well. I did do a massive down size of my cookbook collection about 10 years ago, keeping only favorites that I thought would be helpful in a much changed lifestyle. Well guess what, I didn't bring enough of them along because I still mourn some of the ones I didn't keep. We all know comfort foods, well cookbooks are my comfort.

Have you noticed though that it takes so long to look and ponder recipes that you end up having to do a last minute 'throw it together', because you've spent too much time looking for just the right recipe?
Joined Apr 19, 2001
"Have you noticed though that it takes so long to look and ponder recipes that you end up having to do a last minute 'throw it together', because you've spent too much time looking for just the right recipe?"



Joined Apr 4, 2000
Good point Marm!

For me looking for the right recipe is half the fun! :)
Joined Aug 11, 2000
I just moved from a 4 bedroom 3 bath to a Bungalow with 1 BR 1 moved at the same time...DOWNSIZING. Books and mags went flying.

I have an antique Armoire with glass doors and carved wood flowers on the sides that lives in the livingroom with only cookbooks....divided into baking, Julia and James, Time-Life (from my childhood, vegetarian, game/shrooms same same in my book, cajun/creole, ethnic and I do have that algerian as well as lithuanian etc book, that's pretty much how it's divided oh yeah the chocolate shelf overrunnth.
cookbooks being read in my BR, cookbooks used often on the one counter in the kitchen !! 1950's orginal kitchen...except fridge. READ NO COUNTER>
I'm not meticulous about my books, if you pick up one I've used you'll know will possibly not have a binder, it will OPEN to recipes that are fav automatically, it will definately have dried samples of much used ones.....these are Joy of Cooking, Maida Heaters, Le Notre pastry, I'm sure a few odds and ends.....and I have my Mom's Settlement and Good Housekeeping from the 50's as well as prying Pillsbury "Best of the Bake-off collection" circa 1966 from her library.
I dated a guy for years that had the largest cookbook library in Mo. cookbooks were mine to borrow or recieve for the asking....the way to my heart is definately fueled by books.(wine/food doesn't hurt either....but information got me.)
Joined Dec 30, 1999

Ugh, downsizing, that's got to be the toughest thing to do for a collector. The Friends of the Library are having their spring sale so my collection just grew by another non-existent shelf... LOL!

Joined Mar 31, 2004
I don't have half of what you all have, but I still have problems with organization. I keep my cookbooks in a nook/cranny thing in the kitchen. I have purchased specific La Cucina Italiana, Gourmet and Bon Appetit mags, and I have a subscription to Cooking Light that I am less enthisastic about these days. I've not heard of Saveur before, but I suspect I'll be spotting them in my house soon. ;)

Questions for all you electronic media users - Are your computers in your kitchen? Do you print out your recipes when you decide to use them? Do you find, as I think it was Marmalade who said, you spend too much time searching? This is my biggest problem! Aside from figuring out what to do with the magazines.

And how on earth can you remember what recipe is in which book when you have 500 cookbooks??!!
Joined Mar 12, 2004
I do now! Well, not a permanent fixture, but I recently ran an Ethernet cable to the kitchen so I can take my laptop to the kitchen and have internet access to my office computer's database of recipes. Now, there is no more running back and forth to the office, or printing recipes just so I can have them in the kitchen. At times, it is also handy to access the internet directly from the kitchen.

Although my recipe database does have some complete recipes, most entries are cross-references to cookbooks (I'm too lazy to retype all those recipes), for example, the database entry for "Bagels" simply has a note that says "The Bread Baker's Apprentice, page 115". Then once I have tried a recipe and proven it is worth keeping, I will enter the complete formula in my database.
Joined Apr 28, 2003
I don't have a large collection but it's steadily growing for each pay check I bring in :D
However, I keep them all in a cupboard and away from like 80% of the dust in my room. Its getting tight in there but within the next month or so, My tenants in the basement are moving so once they're cleared out and work done to the place, I'll be moving down there with a lot more space for my books. I'm thinking of either building a bookshelf or getting a metal rack for them or get plastic orginizer/moving bins (I save most of my mags and some artical clipouts too).

With the rack idea, the books will share it's space with my DVDs, which is growing faster then my book collection :cool:

I keep some of my recipes in digital formats so I'm also thinking of making a space for my laptop in the kitchen.
Joined Jul 27, 2004
Oh man, do I need more space too!

We have one small built in shelf which has been full for quite some time. Now, I'm actually storing some on the floor in a stack in FRONT of the shelf unit and I'm storing some at work on a shelf.

I'm not sure how many I have, I've lost count. LOL 300ish I would say.

My prize possession(s) are 2 editions of the Epicurean. We found them at a flea market in a huge lot of books the vendor had purchased from a family whose father had just died. The father was a big time book dealer and these books were from his personal "stash" from a storage unit. Books that never even saw his shop, he was just hording them! LOL

Oh boy, we bought SO many books from her that day!
Joined Jul 27, 2004
"in the freezer of course" along with the coffee, all my cash because we know how likely a theif is to look in there(don't tell any one) and the 25 gallons of milk i got outof the soon to expire bin. haha just kidding mine are usually on my counter where i can get them easiy. i wish i had an island to put them on or at least a bookshelf in the kitchen . some day some day.
Joined Sep 5, 2004
I want to scan my favorite recipes from my cookbooks onto my computer in the future. Now, only new recipes I find on the net, or from new books and magazines are on my computer.

I have to wait for the rest until I get the majority of my cookbooks out of storage in order to put them on the computer. Then, I will categorize the cookbooks by subject, and alphabetize them within the subject.
Joined Dec 13, 2004
piled on my chair beside my desk... i'm just starting out, so i dont have many. They sure do help with homework, sure net is grat, but not the same as having a cook book right there on the desk
:chef: stace
Joined Jun 29, 2004
I keep my cookbooks on the desk in my bedroom, whenever I'm bored or can't sleep I read them.
Joined Mar 19, 2005
my cookbooks are organized by what culture there from.For EX.italian cookbooks are sepret from chinese ones. i have one blank cook book that i write my own recipises in. i store them in my bedroom on a book shelf.

Joined Apr 1, 2005
those of you who have things stored on the computer, please remember that one good lightning storm can make everything go ffffft! found this out the hard way.
JOY lives in the kitchen on the breadbox with my not so blank notebook for writing down inspirations, and my daughters klutz press KIDS COOKING. all three are...used looking. leave it at that. the rest are what i'd call core reference, culled down over the years. they live in the dining room but still have the same 'patina' as the other three. i read all of these over and over. to flesh out an inspiration, i go to the library. since cooking isnt the only thing i study if i didnt limit myself i'd be living in a house made of books duct-taped together with a tarp thrown over.
one thing i have overdosed on are the old recipe booklets they gave out as promotion years ago. i own fire hazardous stacks of these. i dont know whats better- the recipes, the pictures, they way they capture their particular era or what but im addicted!
Joined Jan 8, 2006
I keep my books on a set of stacked shelves, in an alcove between the bedroom and kitchen. Good lighting, I can see them from my work space, and they are always easy to find. Most of my ideas come out of one of the 4 large binders that are full of my own recipies.
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