The kitchen is the most important part of the home; it’s the place where family and friends come together to rejoice in a communal experience, where details of the day are revisited, and where relationships are built.
Here are some tips to make navigating your kitchen easier, so you can spend more time enjoying your company and less time looking for the serving spoons.
See What You’ve Got
Before you can organize your kitchen, create an inventory. Get everything out and check to see what you use, what needs maintenance or repair, and what needs to be tossed or replaced.
Then, group your kitchen items together based on when you use them.
Divide Your Kitchen into Zones
Organize your kitchen by deciding upon the best places to prepare food, cook, and clean. Store your kitchen items in their corresponding zone: cleaning supplies, sponges, and reusable grocery bags in the cleaning area; knives, cutting boards, and spices in the prep region; pots, pans, and spatulas in the cooking section. This will save you time in the future and immediately have your kitchen looking neater.
Tame Your Cupboards and Drawers
You know what you’ve got and where you want to put it. Now you have to make it work for you.
Look for lazy Susans, baskets, and racks to make it easy to store and find small items in your cupboards and refrigerator. Use hooks to keep pans and lids in the right spot. Silverware organizers keep knives, forks, and spoons in their places. Use the spaces around the organizers to store spatulas, ladles, and other larger pieces.
Don’t forget to use all available space. Hanging baskets and removable adhesive hooks let you store items in the typically unused space inside your cupboard doors without damaging the cabinets.
Wrangle Your Papers
Kitchens often accumulate as much paper as your home office or mail-sorting area.
Start with a binder to gather all the dog-eared food magazines and recipes you’ve printed out from the Internet. Fill it with page protectors and dividers to make it easy to find the recipe you need.
Copy your favorite cookbook recipes and add them to the binder. Your cookbooks can then move out of the kitchen and onto your bookshelf. You can still access them for holiday recipes or new ideas you don’t use all the time.
Then, use a second binder to store warranties and instruction manuals for your kitchen and home appliances. You’ll no longer have to dig through that junk drawer to find the instructions to run that special dishwasher cycle for the Thanksgiving china.
With an organized kitchen, you can spend more time focusing on the things that matter: friends, family, and the perfect meal.