Class Cookbook from A to Z

front cover

Aaaah. The end of the school year. It’s the time of year when I start thinking of some little sirsee for my children’s teachers that will 1) remind the teacher of my child’s class in the years to come and 2) be something the teacher might enjoy using.

A few years ago, we created a class cookbook with photos from the school year. My son has aged out of this teacher gift, and my daughter is on the cusp, but if you have nursery school or kindergarten aged children, this is a fun end of year gift.

The year we gave this particular gift, the children were on a snack rotation (a little like Miss Priss’ snack schedule this year). The students had a letter of the week, and families started sending snacks that related to the letter of the week. By the end of the year, the kids had eaten a snack for each letter of the alphabet.

e and f pages

Parents sent me photos from events during the school year and any recipes they had; I compiled the photos and recipes into a Shutterfly photo book. We ordered copies for the teachers, and many of the families ordered copies as well.

I love this little book. I still use it when I need kid snack ideas (like the Worms in dirt or the Veggie dip). The nursery school teachers continue to use it as a resource for their classroom. The book has the class name on the front cover, a picture of the class and class year on the inside cover page, and a student list on the last page.

g page with photo

Here is what the children had for snack that year:

  • Apple sticks
  • Blueberry muffins
  • Cupcakes
  • Doughnuts
  • Elephant Ears
  • Finger sandwiches
  • Ghoulish Granola mix (served at Halloween)
  • mini Hot dogs in buns
  • Ice cream sandwiches
  • blueberry Jam
  • Key lime pie
  • Lemonade
  • Marshmallows
  • bird Nests
  • Oatmeal aggression cookies
  • Pizza
  • cheesy Quesadillas
  • Root beer floats
  • Sugar cookies
  • Tortilla wraps
  • Upside down cake
  • Veggie dip
  • Worms in dirt
  • chocolate X-plosion
  • orange Yogurt
  • Zucchini bread

I don’t know if all the snacks fall into the “healthy snack” category, but it is a great kid cookbook. I will mention that we did attach AmEx gift cards for the teachers to the cookbook, but I think they would have appreciated the little memory book anyway!

back cover

The Cookbook Collection

cookbook collection

Part of the Cookbook Collection

After a slow start to my meal planning for the holidays, I got into the groove with the Breakfast Cups. I cooked many of my favorite comfort foods over the past few days. Some of the highlights have been Almond Bacon Cheese Dip, Dill Dip, Orzo with Roasted Vegetables, and my family’s sausage breakfast casserole.

Some of my recipes are family recipes, but many come from key cookbooks that anchor my cookbook library. Below is a list of my most used cookbooks along with the names of the best recipes (in my opinion) from those cookbooks. If you click each cookbook name below, it is linked to an Amazon listing.

What cookbooks do you have that you cannot live without?

The Artful Table

The Artful Table: Great Food from the Dallas Museum of Art League (This is the best cookbook I own. Everything turns out well.)

  • Pork Tenderloin with Red Onion Confit
  • Heavenly Potatoes
  • Country-Fried Chicken Salad (use store bought chicken tenders)
  • Picadillo Sarita
Notice the post it notes marking the most used recipes

You can tell which cookbooks are my favorites by the Post-it notes and other scraps of paper sticking out of the top to mark good recipes.

The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

  • Sun-Dried Tomato Dip
  • Turkey Tea Sandwiches
  • Banana Crunch Muffins

Barefoot Contessa Parties

Colorado Collage

  • Carrot Basmati Rice Pilaf
  • Ginger Chicken Kabobs
  • Telluride Tortellini with Chicken

Creme de Colorado

  • Pasta with Broccoli

kansas city junior league

Company’s Coming (out of print– available used)

  • Steak Soup

Beyond Parsley

  • Spaghetti Pie
  • Artichoke Sausage Soup
  • Sugared Bacon

Above and Beyond Parsley

  • Pacific Rim Tenderloin
I find scraps of paper with old party notes in many of my favorite cookbooks.

I find old party notes in many of my favorite cookbooks. I never throw the notes away, so I can go back and recycle good ideas I may forget.

Southern Living Easy Entertaining

family cookbook

Family Cookbook (Not for sale at the present time)

  • A few years ago I compiled all of our traditional family recipes into a Shutterfly album with family photos. My dad is famous for kitchen pictures. These are the pictures of people caught mid-bite, or people standing in their sweat pants on a holiday morning stirring a pot of some kind (see photo below). There is usually one group photo at the table during a large gathering too. These were the photos I used to “enhance” the family cookbook. I use my family cookbook all of the time. I have all of my favorite recipes in one location and do not have to hunt through every loose piece of paper and recipe card box I own to remember how to make our family’s Christmas Eve egg nog. This makes a great birthday gift, Christmas gift, or Mother’s/Father’s Day gift.
Making Mashed PotatoesThanksgiving 2007

Check me out making mashed potatoes.
Thanksgiving 2006