The combination of metal organic frameworks (MOFs) with other functional materials is a potential strategy for the preparation of advanced MOF-based materials. In this study, a simple approach is reported for the fabrication of cellulosic paper containing zeolitic imidazolate framework (ZIF-8) through in-situ loading in the papermaking process. The results showed that the ZIF-8 was evenly distributed in the paper substrate owing to the multi-layers structure of the cellulosic fibers, although the loading of the ZIF-8 particles on the single cellulosic fiber was nonuniform. The as-prepared ZIF-8 composites can be used as a highly efficient adsorbent material for anionic dyes in aqueous solution thanks to the positive charge on the surface of the ZIF-8 particles. More than 92% of the methyl orange (MO-) dye in the aqueous solution was rapidly removed through a simple filtration process using the ZIF-8 composite cellulosic paper (hand-sheets made in lab) when the content of ZIF-8 in cellulosic paper was high as 25.1%. In addition, the ZIF-8 composite paper had acceptable flexibility and could be reused at least 4 cycles by washing out the adsorbed dye.