6 Tips for Organizing Your Kitchen

A small, modern kitchen with popular stainless...

Having an organized kitchen helps save you both money and time. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The first week of October is Get Organized Week and here at Fill Your Plate, we think the most important room in the house to have organized is the kitchen.  Not only does good kitchen organization make it easier to cook healthy, homemade meals, it can also help you stretch your family’s food dollar.  In an organized kitchen, you can find what you need and always know what you have.  This makes it easy to use ingredients while they are good, never buy things you already have, and throw together a delicious dinner with very little planning.

Here are our 6 favorite tips for getting your kitchen organized.

1.     Designate Spaces

One of the best ways to get your kitchen organized and keep it organized is to give the things that belong there, like cookbooks, aprons, and cookware, a permanent home.  Carve out some space for these items and they will never clutter up your cabinets or countertops again.

2.     Think Vertical

When we consider kitchen storage, most of us think of countertops, cabinets, and cupboards.  We focus on storage solutions where things are stored on vertical space.  Take another look at your kitchen and look for opportunities to use walls and doors for storage too.  Over the door hanging storage can expand the capacity of your pantry.  Wall hooks to hold pot holders and aprons can free up drawer space.

3.     Consider Use

Open up your cupboards and cabinets and take a good hard look at how you have things setup.  Look for things that are used very little that are stored in easy access areas.  The things you use most often should be the easiest to get to and those special occasion items like fine china or platters for entertaining can inhabit the harder to reach spaces.

4.     Keep it Together

Make it easier to find what you need and put things in their proper place by keeping those things that are alike together.  If all of your bakeware is in the same spot, you will never need to go hunting for that bundt pan or searching for where your spouse stashed the spatula.

5.     Visibility Matters

If you can’t see it, you won’t use it.  This goes for everything in your kitchen from the fancy food processor you got as a wedding present to the bunch of fresh basil you brought home from the farmer’s market.  Organize cupboards so you can see everything on the shelves.  Whenever you purchase storage containers, pick ones that allow you to see the contents.

6.     Consolidate

Many kitchens suffer from constant clutter because there is simply too much that needs to be stored there.  However, you may be able to drastically reduce your storage requirements by doing a little consolidation.  Look at all your small appliances, cookware, and utensils and pull out anything that can only be used for one purpose like a garlic press.  Think about when you last used it and if there is some other item in your kitchen that can produce the same result.  If you can’t remember when you last used it and you have some other means of producing the same result, you don’t need to keep it.

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