Cookbooks Fundraising Group collections

Making a Fundraising Cookbook in 5 Simple Steps

Fundraising with Cookbook Create featured image

Create a high-quality cookbook that will raise thousands of dollars for your organization.

Creating fundraising cookbooks used to be time and labor-intensive—I know from experience. I remember helping my mom collate and bind mimeographed cookbooks that she and a co-chair produced to raise money for my elementary school’s PTA.

But it’s not like that anymore!

Today, technology like Cookbook Create’s group collections feature and cookbook design software makes it remarkably easy to gather, edit and organize recipes and to create high-quality printed cookbooks for your fundraiser. And because cookbooks can commonly sell for more than it costs to produce them, they can be an amazing money maker.

Whether you’re making a fundraising cookbook to support your church, a civic group, a school or PTA, an athletic team, a veteran’s association, or any other nonprofit organization, here are five steps to creating a cookbook that will help you blow your fundraising goal out of the water.

1. Choose Your Platform

Pick an online tool with great database capabilities, so you can upload, edit, tag and sort your recipes. Bonus points if the platform also includes hundreds of community recipes you can incorporate into your own fundraising cookbook.Creating cookbooks with cookbook create

Extra bonus points if the platform you choose happens to offer the finest-quality full-color printing, and a range of binding and page count options. (Hint: Cookbook Create does!)

2. Pick a Theme

Choose your theme for the cookbook. Take a cue from your organization’s collective passion, or get creative.

Planning a cookbook to raise money for the PTA? Consider a cookbook all about fun lunchbox treats or easy weeknight dinners. Preparing for a church fundraiser? Collect recipes for your congregation members’ favorite Sunday suppers. Your imagination is your only limit.

Looking for some inspiration? Here are some ideas for theming group collections using Cookbook Create.

3. Assemble Your Team

Next, create a list of people to ask for recipes. Make a schedule listing when you need to contact people, follow up, and receive contributed recipes. Set a target for the number of recipes you’d like to include; we recommend at least 50-100  recipes so the book is an appealing size.

Then, get in touch! Ask your list to contribute their recipes. Using Cookbook Create, you can organize a Group Collection and invite your volunteers to add recipes.

Learn more about how to set up and manage a Group Collection.

cookbook create functions

4. Design and Finalize

Don’t worry: You don’t have to be a graphic designer. You can easily create a fundraising cookbook that’s unique to your organization by choosing page backgrounds, adding your own photos, cover designs, a color scheme and typography.

Cookbook Create includes easy-to-use tools that let you pick different styles, preview how they’ll look in your book, and make your own design — no dated-looking templates that make your cookbook look like every other group’s book.

5. Start Planning Your Launch Party

Once you’ve proofread your recipes and previewed the layout, order your printed books.

A beautifully printed book stocked with beloved recipes from your community is an easy sell—with just one flip through your display copy, everyone will want one! (By the way, if you run out of cookbooks the day of your fundraiser, it’s easy to reorder from Cookbook Create.)

Ready to make a cookbook for your organization’s fundraiser?

fundraising cookbook

Learn more about how Cookbook Create works, recruit a few friends to help, and get started!


Bryn Mooth is the author of The Findlay Market Cookbook: Recipes & Stores from Cincinnati’s Historic Public Market and the editor of Edible Ohio Valley magazine. She shares recipes at

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