A well-flowing and organized kitchen is not only great because it’s clean, but it can also save you money. Organizing your kitchen and pantry area is extremely important because often times when we go shopping for groceries, we end up buying duplicates and spending money we didn’t need to. In addition to the money savings aspect, an organized kitchen can help make cooking a joy and easier to accomplish. Here are cheap and easy steps to organizing your kitchen.
Easy Steps to Organizing Your Kitchen
As with any organizing project, it is important to go through every section of your area before the organization can begin. This is probably the most time-consuming part of the whole deal. Start by going through drawers and making piles of things you want to keep, things you want to get rid of and things you are unsure about. The discard pile should go into boxes to be donated (or thrown away if they are broken or missing parts), the keep pile should go into a bin to be set aside until you are going through everything, and the pile of things you are unsure about, should be placed separately from the keep or discard pile.
Next, start to wipe down your counters and everything. A good organization task is not complete without a thorough cleaning as well and most kitchens usually are long over-due for it.
Use the foam kind of shelf liner in your cabinets so that when you put your dishes in there, they won’t slip around all the time. Same thing with your silverware and tool drawers.
When you have everything set into piles and wiped down, start to think about ideas on how you want your kitchen to flow. The best organization in a kitchen is when it is done with the tasks you will be doing in mind. For example, place knives in zones near where you generally do your cutting. It doesn’t make sense to place them in a drawer away from where they see the most action. Place items and tools that you use frequently with easy access and at eye level without having to dig for them or get on your hands and knees to access them.
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Utilize every part of your kitchen. I like to place flower vases and candles/decor in the cabinets above my fridge. I know that I rarely need to access that sort of thing, it’s great storage, and when I do need them, I can just grab a chair and get them down. Likewise, be smart where you are putting things. Don’t put your spices in the cabinets above your stove, for example, as the steam from your cooking can ruin them.
When you have your vision set, start to go through the keep pile. Start placing things in their proper homes and adjust as needed. You are more likely to stay organized if things are easily accessible. After all the necessary items are in place, go through the maybe pile. This is where you can start to decide if something is really a necessary part of your kitchen or if maybe it’s something you bought and only used one time. To stay organized, you’ll want to keep clutter to a minimum.
As you’re putting things away, keep all like items with like items. For example, you’ll want all your hand tools in the same area. All your pans in the same cabinet or in your under-the-stove drawer. All baking sheets should be together. All dishes, cups, and saucers should be in the same cabinet with each other. Whatever and wherever it makes sense to put them, as long as the like items are together.
Be sure to utilize your under the sink space. You can use shelf organizers to organize your supplies. I like to keep cleaning supplies underneath my kitchen sink and of course, they also must be neat and tidy. The cleaning supplies that are unopened and I’ve stocked up on, I keep in a pantry that I got off Craigslist in my garage. That way, there are never 2 or 3 of the same bottles opened at the same time, causing more chaos and clutter.
After you are done with these steps, you may be wondering how it will stay this way. Here are some tips to maintaining the peace…
Make it a habit to go through your drawers and cupboards once every 2-3 months. When done regularly, this should just take a few minutes of your time. Place things back where they belong if you find something that is out of order.
Make sure everyone knows where everything belongs in your home. This will keep your family from placing things in the wrong spots.
Don’t buy something that you will only use a couple of times. This is especially hard for me because I am so obsessed with kitchen tools, but if you find that you really want to try it, look at a thrift store first as you might be able to find it cheaper and if you see that you won’t regularly use it, you will have an easier time getting rid of it and not allowing it to clutter up your kitchen.