Make Your Own Cookbook

When you make your own cookbook for church fundraising, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

  • Sales will depend on the number and quality of the recipes you include. Don't just throw together 15 or 20 recipes that most people already know. Find unique recipes and include at least 30 for your cookbook. When you have a pot luck dinner at church, there are always foods that everyone wants the recipe for. Get those into your cookbook.
  • Find a company that will do a nice job. This seems obvious, but people often take the first company they find. You might want to try the prices and quality of local printing companies. Or, you could use the services of an online company. See below for a list of companies on the internet.
  • Decide on the look and feel of your cookbook. What will you put on the cover? Will you use a picture of your church? Will it have a holiday look? Will you include pictures of the various recipes? But be sure to check on pricing. Some companies will charge extra if you use your own artwork.
  • Set a budget. You need to know how much you can spend when you make your own cookbooks. If your church only has 50 people, you probably won't sell very many. So check on pricing for whatever size of congregation you have. You might even want to ask in advance how many people would be interested in buying one of your church cookbooks.
  • Sell your cookbooks with style. Don't just put up a table in the back and wait for people to approach you. Do a skit. Have a family sitting around a dinner table. When the food (empty bowls) is served, the people around the table can say things like, (sarcastically), "this looks great;" or, "didn't we just have this last week?" Then make an announcement about the creative recipes in your brand new cookbook.

Make Your Own Cookbook Options

There are many places you can get cookbooks made. Here are a few ideas.

  • Make your own cookbook. Do you have someone in your church who can do desktop publishing? Do you know someone outside your church who can do it? If so, you can create your own cookbooks. Put together a file for the cover. Create pages for the recipes. Then take the files to Staples or another printer and have them print and bind them in book form.
  • CreateMyCookbook.com. This company offers several excellent features. They offer both coil and hardback binding. You can either have them printed on demand – if you're not quite sure how many you will sell; or have them printed in advance to save a little money. Another excellent option is that you can put up a "Buy It Now" button on your church web site. Put up a page describing your make your own cookbook. Then add the button. CreateMyCookbook.com collects the money and sends you a check.
  • HeritageCookbook.com. After 16 years of fundraising experience, Susan created HeritageCookbook.com. She was determined to create a site and software that would make the make your own cookbook process as easy as possible. They offer printing in both black and white, and color. The unique thing about Heritage is that they encourage you to put pictures and stories in the book. They suggest that the books sell much better with these added features. You could put stories about how people found their favorite recipes or Christian testimonies of various people in your church. Add pictures along with the testimonies.
  • Blurb.com. This make your own cookbook company offers a seven to ten day turnaround. You have the option of multiple bindings from hardcover with dustcovers to softcover. You even can choose the type of paper you use. Read more about Blurb's cookbooks here.
  • Morris Press Cookbooks is touted as the web's leading cookbook maker. Get their free publishing kit, enter your information and pictures, and Morris Press will do the rest. They even have a quick and easy way of estimating the cost of your cookbook. Read more here.
  • Friends and Family Cookbooks. This is a different type of cookbook publisher. It is somewhat easier than other publishers. That's because you send them all your recipes and pictures and they do the rest. Read more here.
  • The Family Cookbook Project is another company you may want to look into. Read about their services here.
  • Cookbook Publishers. This company offers a price match guarantee. This cookbook publisher has stood the test of time. They've been publishing cookbooks since 1947! Take a look at this make your own cookbook here.

Make Your Own Cookbook Conclusion

There are other make your own cookbook publishers. But as far as I can tell, these are the main contenders. Don't just go with the first company you look into. Do your homework and check out several before you decide.

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