Creative & Sentimental Ways to Turn Recipe Cards into Gifts

Give a gift with great sentiment by turning old family recipe cards into thoughtful gifts.

I’m a crazy woman when it comes to family recipes.

In fact, they are one of the most precious sentimental collections I own.

I firmly believe that a family’s recipe collection is one of the ways a family’s story and history can be passed on from generation to generation.

Each recipe points to a person, place, and event where shared memories took place – most often around a kitchen table.

Here are some creative ways recipes can be used both as handwritten recipe gifts, and a way to preserve family memories.

5 Ways to turn Recipe Cards into Thoughtful Gifts

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Make your own recipe book

Many years ago, money was tight and Christmas was approaching. I wracked my brain to think of a creative, thoughtful gift idea I could give to both my and my husband’s family members.

I landed on the idea of making my own recipe book called “Recipes- A Collection of Family Favorites compiled by Rita Joy”.

In it were recipes from both sides of our families – our moms, grandmas, sisters, and sisters-in-law.

Included with each recipe was a 1 or 2 sentence description as to the recipe’s origin and a memory attached to it.

There weren’t any fancy full color pictures included – just a bit of black and white clip art for each section division.

I had it photocopied and spiral bound at our local Staples store.

And, ironically, when our boys grew up and left home, they each asked for a copy of one… (Thankfully, I had 3 extra printed and ready for them.;))

a homemade recipe book on a table
Compiling a list of family favorite recipes is a great recipe book idea.

Have a cookbook publisher print off your favorite recipes

I’m not going to lie – printing my own cookbook was a LOT of work! Since then, I’ve discovered there are many online companies that will do all the hard work of printing recipe book gifts.

A few options are Blurb, Cookbook Publishers ,and Morris Cookbooks.

*Note: I haven’t had any cookbooks published through those companies, so I cannot speak first hand regarding their service.

Turn Handwritten Recipe Cards into a Recipe Binder

Another simple way to pass on a collection of recipes is by creating a recipe binder. This is a much simpler option as each recipe can be printed on standard printer paper, punched with a 3 hole punch, and put in a binder. It is then easy to add to the collection as time goes on.

To make the process of transferring your handwritten recipes into printable format, I’ve discovered these pretty templates that you can purchase for a low price through Etsy: (Click on picture to see the details.

Have handwritten recipe cards printed on dish towels

I absolutely love handwritten recipes! Just opening up my recipe file and seeing my Mom’s precise handwriting floods me with memories and thankfulness for her. (She is in glory now.) A person’s handwriting is a part of their unique personality, and I just love how no two are exactly alike.

Did you know you can have handwritten recipes printed onto dishtowels or aprons? You can!! They make the most precious handwritten recipe gifts.

Here are a few different options I tracked down online. (Click on the arrows to scroll through and the image to find details):

Create a one of a kind piece of art using a handwritten recipe

If you are handy with a scanner and photo editing, you could scan in handwritten recipe cards and turn it into a printable image. Then it could be printed in any size (at a local print shop like staples) and framed.

If you don’t feel comfortable with that technology, here are a few places who do similar services. One will even turn your recipe into a canvas art print.(Click on the arrows to scroll through and the image to find details):

To find some of my family favorite recipes:

  • Check out the recipes section for a whole bunch of options!
  • This steam pudding recipe is our family Christmas dessert tradition – and perhaps the oldest recipe I own.
  • My mother-in-law’s easy freeze ahead lasagna gets made at least once a month at our house.
  • This family favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe was in my mom’s recipe file. It was given to her by a Pastor’s wife who lived in our home town before I was born.

For more recipes, crafts & ideas for your home all year round, join the VIP group!

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And if you want to see more real life behind the scenes action, be sure to come join me on my @harbourbreeze Instagram Channel!

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