Photo books are often created to celebrate milestones such as weddings, births, graduations and anniversaries. But they can also serve other purposes. For instance, they can document a collection, preserve children’s artwork, or record one’s travels. Therefore, these types of non-traditional photo books deserve a place on the bookshelf as well.

One option: consider creating a customized family cookbook. Fill it with photos and text from various family sources. This is a great way to honor home cooks. Cherished recipes that have been in the family for generations can be featured. And yes, online recipe sites and apps are great and useful. However, nothing beats holding and owning a beautiful custom cookbook, made with love and spice!

Since the kitchen is the heart of our homes, food is often the centerpiece of our celebrations. Beloved family recipes transport us back to our childhoods – much like viewing old photos. Both food and photos have a visceral way of connecting us with those who came before. And personal photos capturing these special moments with family members cooking together are perfect illustrations. Authenticity is worth preserving. With that in mind, here are some steps to consider when starting your own photo cook book:

Start by gathering, organizing, and scanning old recipes. They can be hand-written index cards or clipped from old magazines or other sources.

Transcribe the recipes into a text-based format that will help with readability.

Favorite any digital photos that you have to use for these special dishes.

Find free (or low-cost) stock images of similar dishes as well.

Scan and add photos of family members enjoying meals or gatherings to add context.

Your layout can be as simple or as intricate as you like.

Choose an online photo book publisher – we love Miller’sLabs – and create, publish, and share.

Your family recipe photo book will become a well-loved, treasured keepsake for years to come!