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How to Organize Your Kitchen
and Spice Up the Storage

When you organize your kitchen, you are creating an invitation to linger for good food and conversation. After all, your kitchen is the heart of your home and you want friends and family to feel comfortable to help themselves—without the embarrassment of a chaotic mess!

To help you organize your kitchen, identify why you need to tackle this project:

To solve these dilemmas, you want to organize your kitchen in a way that creates a natural flow that accommodates your kitchen activities. Think of your kitchen as four corners: The Dish Storage Corner, the Food Preparation Corner, the Food Storage Corner, and the Cooking Corner.

Ways to Organize Your Kitchen

  1. The Dish Storage Corner

    Are your everyday dishes scattered around the kitchen? Maybe the glasses are by the refrigerator, the silverware by the stove, and the cereal bowls next to the sink? If this is your situation, you know how aggravating it can be to unload the dishwasher! Instead, simplify your dish storage by creating a Dish Storage Corner. This is a grouping of your everyday glassware, dishes, silverware, dish towels, and detergent—as close to the sink and dishwasher as possible. This will make unloading the dishwasher or hand washing the dishes all within reach!

    Additional Dish Storage Center Tips:

    • Keep dish detergent and scouring pads stored under the kitchen sink. A cleaning caddy or sliding utility basket keeps items organized and convenient.
    • Dish towels can be stored in a nearby drawer, or in a container under the sink.
    • You probably only use one set of dishes, glasses, and utensils. If so, get rid of duplicate sets. Or, place them in another storage area outside of the kitchen.
    • Stack plates and bowls of different sizes in separate piles so you don’t have to lift the bowls to get to the plates.
    • Place glasses of different heights into rows front to back, rather than short glasses in front and taller in back.
    • Decorative shelves are ideal for displaying beautiful serving bowls, dishes, baskets, and vases.
    • Keep extra serving platters, tablecloths, place mats, serving utensils, candlesticks, breadbaskets, etc. in a separate buffet in the dining room or other area. Since these aren’t everyday items, the kitchen is not a wise location for them, unless of course you do have the space! If you have this extra space, designate an out-of-the-way cupboard for these items.

  2. The Food Preparation Corner

    How many times have you tried to make a nice meal, but found it a real challenge because the counter you use is too small to adequately handle all the preparation? You can solve this sticky situation by designating a Food Preparation Corner. This should be a big corner or the longest available counter, between the sink and the stove or the sink and the fridge. This should give you plenty of room to cut, chop, mix, season, slice, and dice your favorite ingredients.

    Use the cupboards above and below this countertop to store regular food preparation supplies such as spices, mixing bowls, knives, cutting boards, measuring cups, spoons, blenders, mixers, and plastic wraps. With all of these supplies in one corner, your supplies will be more convenient and food preparation will be quicker.

  3. Additional Food Preparation Corner Tips:

    • If you don’t have enough space in these cupboards, you could utilize a microwave cart, butcher’s block, or island to store your extra supplies.
    • Use door-mount spice racks.
    • If you have multiple containers of the same type of spice, consolidate.
    • For cookbooks, add a shelf on or above the counter.

  4. The Food Storage Corner

    Does this sound familiar “Where are the chips?” “I can’t find the peanut butter!” It can be a real ordeal finding all the supplies to make a midnight snack if the munchies aren’t organized. The Food Storage Corner is where you keep all the food, ideally using the cupboards and/or pantry next to the refrigerator. This includes canned goods, boxed goods, bottles, jars, and bread products. With all your food together in the same area, it will make preparation and clean-up a snap!

    Additional Food Storage Corner Tips:

    • Add extra shelves between the current shelves to utilize the extra air space.
    • Add wire racks that stand on shelves to add more storage capacity.
    • Add a lazy susan or plastic turntable to keep items within easy reach.
    • Organize your food by category.
    • Give canned or boxed food that you haven’t used within a year, to a charity organization (as long as they haven’t expired!)

  5. The Cooking Corner

    It’s important to be comfortable cooking in your own kitchen, but when pots and pans are out of reach and utensils are unorganized, it’s enough to make you boil over! Organize your kitchen supplies in The Cooking Corner—located near the stove and oven. These cupboards and drawers are for storing pots and pans, bake ware, cooking utensils, and pot holders.

    Additional Cooking Corner Tips:

    • Store heavy pots and pans in deep, lower cupboards.
    • Use ceiling or wall pot racks.
    • To save valuable space, nest pots and pans by their type (saucepans, frying pans, etc.) Group all the lids with a lid organizer or in a plastic container.
    • For plastic containers used for leftovers, keep the lids together with a plastic lid holder.
    • Use a maple rack to store trays and baking sheets upright in a cabinet.

With this four corner system, you’ll be able to organize your kitchen sensibly for those who cook and those who enjoy the good cooking!

Do you need more organizing ideas? Then try our monthly Home Organizing Ideas Newsletter. It is filled with original ideas and expert advice to help you reach your organizing goals. Receive my special free booklet on how you can start organizing your desk, garage, papers, closet and more! It's FREE so SIGN UP NOW by clicking on the link on the top right of this page!

If you are trying to organize your kitchen try a kitchen island. They come in many varieties now and are not the old typical kitchen islands that you remmember. They look stylish and in some cases look very much a piece of furniture. So, if you are considering this as an option click on the graphic below for a look at great islands.

Kitchen Islands

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