Tips for Kitchen Organization
What does an organized kitchen look like? The first step is to take a look at what you have – cull out duplicates, old or broken items, things you don’t use, and tidy out drawers and cabinets. Once you have streamlined the contents of your kitchen, you can better organize what you have. There are so many organizing products on the market today that are specifically intended for kitchen organization.
Consider where you could utilize cabinet pullouts, tiered racks, specialty holders, flatware trays, roll-out or swing-out racks, spring-loaded drawer dividers and other kitchen organizers to help maximize space.
In an efficient kitchen plan, the 3 most heavily used work areas should be laid out so that the lines that connect them form a triangle. Your kitchen may not be laid out this way, but you can still keep the rationale of keep-highly-used-things-nearby in mind. Put things near to where they are used. Cups, glasses, dishes, cutlery should be ideally located in the drawers and cupboards closest to the dishwasher. Pots and pans go beside the stove if possible. Gadgets go in the drawers right below the counter where prep work is done. Obviously it is not always possible to make these things happen based on space, kitchen configuration and storage, but it is worth examining.
Hang things up. Remember that any space you can use to hang something will free up flat space inside a cabinet or drawer. Move knives out of a drawer or a wood block by using a magnetic strip put on the wall to hang them. Get a magnetic sorter box to hang on the side of the fridge for coupons, takeout menus, a notepad and pen, and other papers that tend to accumulate on the countertops.
Another step to maximize kitchen organization is to manage frequently-cluttered areas. To better control freezer clutter, use plastic baskets in the freezer to hold like items such as frozen breakfast items or bagged side dishes and veggies. Reduce your inventory of empty plastic storage containers, and then separate lids from containers. Be realistic as you look at one-use gadgets and appliances – how often do you use them, and should they take up valuable cabinet space on a daily basis?
Remove original packaging whenever possible. Instead, use lidded food storage containers that are square or rectangular in shape (they are more space-efficient than round) for staples such items as flour, sugars, rice, chocolate chips, tea bags, and small bagged snacks for on-the-go. Having uniform, clear containers with labels on the top lid and on the side will make items easier to find. If you do need part of the original label or package, cut out and tape the directions or information onto the outside of the bin.
Keep small packets (i.e. Jell-O, sauces, dip mixes) and miscellaneous baking supplies (cake decorating tubes, muffin cups, food coloring) together in a open plastic basket/bin, where it is easy to pull down the bin and pull out one of its contents.
Thanks to Organized A to Z.com partner Patty McPherson for contributing this article. Patty is the Owner of Orderly Manor® in Plymouth, MA (www.OrderlyManor.com). Orderly Manor provides organizing and redesign services for residential and small business clients. Patty is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers, the American Society of Home Stagers and Redesigners, and the Real Estate Staging Association.
Entry filed under: In the Kitchen.