One of the more daunting aspects of home organization lies in transforming our cluttered kitchens into tidy, functional spaces that facilitate easier cooking experiences. Today, we’re sharing our top eight strategies to help you figure out how to get your kitchen organized optimally. Get ready to declutter, reorganize, and establish a new routine to keep your kitchen in order.
1.) Make the Kitchen a Paperless Zone
It’s easy to get in the habit of bringing mail, coupons, paper flyers, papers from your child’s school, and work-related papers into the kitchen. However, piles of papers are a surefire way to make your kitchen look cluttered and nearly impossible to cook in.
Set up a mail organizer near the front door, a school paper file near the homework station, and keep your work-related papers near your home office or homework space. Your child’s art can and should still be hung up but consider mounting a bulletin board for this purpose rather than covering your refrigerator’s surface.
2.) Keep Your Workspaces Clear
Now that your kitchen is free of papers, it’s time to banish anything from your countertops that you don’t use at least once per day. Your toaster and coffee machine will need to stay, but as much as possible, store extraneous items out of sight. When it’s time to cook, your mind will see the fresh, clean expanse of counter space as inviting, making it more likely that you’ll choose to cook dinner rather than dial for take-out or delivery.
3.) Cut Back on Your Stuff
When you attempt to stash things in your cabinets, you may be frustrated by a lack of available space. If your kitchen is bursting at the seams, consider cutting back on your belongings. Most of us have accumulated twice as many mugs as we really need, gifts from well-meaning loved ones that we rarely use, and impulse buys of our own that we don’t love as much as we had hoped.
Consider donating these items, or gift a friend who can make use of them. Making space for you to use your kitchen easily outweighs the potential benefit of hanging onto items you’ll use once per year!
4.) Organize Items by Points of Use
Now that you’ve whittled down your inventory, it’s time to move items around. Wherever possible, store items nearby the zone in which you use them. Your cutting board should be kept beneath the counter you use for chopping, and your knife block or magnetic knife strip should be kept nearby within easy reach.
5.) Organize Your Cabinets and Pantry
Expand your existing storage by installing shelves or organizers for canned goods and spices. Arrange similar items within the same space. Savory items that are often used together should be kept together, while your sweet baking ingredients should be grouped together elsewhere.
6.) Deep Clean Your Fridge and Freezer
This project deserves its own day, but it’s essential if you want your kitchen to facilitate your cooking and baking efforts. Turn off your fridge and freezer, pull everything out, and get cleaning. As you put things back, make sure they’re fresh. Then, organize by size, shape, and ingredient type to make items easy to find from now on.
7.) Make Your Fruit Bowl the Star
Your kitchen may be looking a bit bare now that you’ve cleared the countertops. This is where fruit comes to your rescue! A big, beautiful fruit bowl or fruit stand stocked with fresh, ripe fruit, is both beautiful and appealing to the appetite. This combo will visually liven up your kitchen and encourage you and your family to reach for healthy fruits when you’re hankering for a snack.
8.) Completely Tidy Your Kitchen Daily
The best way to keep your kitchen in this Zen state is to ensure that it’s clean at the end of every day.
The following checklist is a good starting point:
- Place ingredients back where they belong
- Load and run your dishwasher
- Empty crumbs from your toaster
- Rinse and scrub down your sink
- Run the garbage disposal, then flush with cold water
- Wipe down the countertops and stove
- Sweep and mop (or Wet Swiffer) the floor
- Use a disinfecting wipe on handles, faucets, and light switches
Establishing a habit takes anywhere from a few weeks to several months. If you’re still feeling that it takes effort to leave your kitchen sparkling after a couple of weeks, don’t give up! This is one habit that’s well worth the extra work. When you wake up and encounter your clean, tidy kitchen, take a moment to stand and admire your work. This positive feedback can boost your brain’s willingness to keep putting in the time to keep your kitchen looking great.
Before and after photos are also an excellent way to keep yourself motivated. When you look back at your kitchen when it was packed to the brim, piled with papers, and hardly worth the hard work of cooking in the small amount of space that was free, you’ll appreciate your hard work more than ever.
Are you the proud owner of a well-organized kitchen? Leave us a comment below with your favorite tips for creating and maintaining a clean and tidy kitchen space.