Making delicious food, whether it’s a big Thanksgiving meal, a romantic dinner, or a delectable dessert, is much easier when you are working in a well-organized and clean kitchen. This is a major reason why many master chefs will advise everyone to clean as they cook. It keeps their station tidy, which minimizes mistakes.
It is quite simple to organize your kitchen and reap the rewards almost immediately.
Just consider and implement the following eight tips:
Start By Decluttering
Before you consider any other strategy to organize your kitchen, you need to declutter. Empty out your kitchen cupboards, drawers, and the refrigerator. Go through everything you have! In terms of food, throw out anything past its expiry date. If there is anything you could still eat, but know you won’t, get rid of that as well. You should also look at kitchen utensils and other tools and appliances to assess which ones are actually useful for you. Getting rid of the clutter first helps make your organizing much easier, since you won’t have to deal with these troublesome outliers.
Keep an Inventory
Another key to kitchen organization is maintaining an inventory of what you have. This is particularly important for food and keeping track of nonperishables. Doing so also allows you to avoid purchasing food you already have enough of in your cupboards, knowing when you actually need to stock up again, et cetera. It prevents the clutter you just got rid of from immediately coming back.
Pick Out Containers
Sometimes you will have prepackaged snacks, bags of spices, et cetera in your kitchen. Unfortunately, these are hard to stack or otherwise organize on their own. The good news? You can use containers to help keep like items together (e.g. your children’s gummy snacks for school lunches) and maintain a high level of organization in your cupboards.
Devise a Logical Storage Plan
If you truly want to organize your kitchen, you are going to need to devise a logical storage plan for everything from the food to the pots and pans, including what cupboards and drawers you are going to use. In a logical storage plan, you have a place for everything and you group like items together. For instance, your plates and bowls would be in the same cupboard, and you would not see plates and boxes of pasta next to one another. Beyond this, you should also consider where in the kitchen you are going to need these items, and put them in cupboards and drawers nearby, so you can reach them with ease.
Divide the Work
No, this does not mean dividing the cooking between people (though this can also really help you). We mean dividing your kitchen into sections, with a purpose for each. For instance, you would have a section of counter space specifically designed for meal preparation and another for your small appliances, and yet another for cleaning.
Speaking of cleaning, your kitchen will be far more organized if you clean it regularly. This can be as simple as wiping down the counters and doing the dishes each night, but can also include regular fridge and pantry cleaning. Regular cleaning ensures clutter and other disorganization issues never get out of hand.
Use Drawer Dividers
Struggling to find what you are looking for in your kitchen drawers? Purchase some drawer dividers to help you! The most popular dividers, of course, help you separate your cutlery so that forks, knives, and spoons do not get mixed up. You can also find dividers for spice jars, as well as basic office drawer dividers, which you can use for kitchen items like plastic freezer bags and aluminum foil.
Whether you are labelling ground beef you want to freeze, or a container in your cupboards, including distinct labels on most (if not all) items in your kitchen can be a great help when it comes to organizing. For example, freezer items will become much easier to identify, so you don’t need to hazard a guess. It can also prevent the unnecessary searching and moving around of items in cupboards, which will destroy your organization methods quite quick.