Kitchen Organizing

The first step in a kitchen organizing project is to empty out one cabinet or area at a time.  Determine which items you no longer use.  These items can be passed on, donated or thrown out. This will allow you to benefit from the lack of clutter. 

The second step is to create zones of activity.  I commonly divide kitchens into 5 zones.  I recommend tackling just one at a time to keep the job from seeming overwhelming.

Cooking Zone – Organize pots, pans, cooking utensils and bake-ware.

Food Preparation Zone – Clean out the refrigerator as well as organize cutting boards, knives, mixing bowls, spices, mixers, blenders, measuring cups and spoons.  Get rid of duplicates.  Throw out foods that are past their expiration dates.

Dish Zone – Organize your dishware, mugs, glasses and flatware.

Food Serving Zone – Sort through placemats, napkins, trivets, large serving pieces, and any groups of items you have not already organized. 

Food Storage Zone – When you go through your pantry and refrigerator, pull out any food that you know you will not be use or has expired.  Group foods by type – all soups together, all pasta, all fruits, etc.

The third step is to clear counters.  Pay particular attention to reducing the number of objects stored permanently on a counter.  Counters needs frequent cleaning and are usually primary workspaces.

The fourth step is to determine the best locations for the remaining items.  Frequently used objects, should be housed in easy-to-reach locations. Infrequently used items, like the roasting pan that you only haul out during the holidays, can go on high shelves, in the back of cabinets or even outside the kitchen.