Welcome to Fall Organization Week on One Good Thing By Jillee! For the next 6 days we will be sharing a room-by-room round-up of some of our favorite organizing tips and tricks for keeping your home running smoothly. We are focusing on organization but you will also find cleaning, decorating, and overall home improvement ideas. We hope you will join us all week and, more importantly, that you will join in the conversation and share YOUR ideas as well! Everyone who leaves a comment this week will be automatically entered to win a special prize that will be announced at the end of this post! :-) So let’s get this organizing party started!
I love my kitchen, but it is seriously tiny. I measured it out of curiosity for this post, and it’s about 72 sq. ft. in size. So I hope you understand what I mean when I say that the usable/workable space in our kitchen is at an absolute premium, and staying organized is key to keeping it a functional place to cook meals. I recently made some changes in our kitchen to help us stay more organized, so I’ll share those, plus I’ll include some other great kitchen organizing ideas that I think you’ll like!
Put bulk ingredients like flour and sugar in their own containers and label them so they’ll be easy to find AND easy to use. Reuse containers you already have in the house, or go out and buy some. There are a lot of great options for BPA-free storage containers these days, and some of them even come with their own measuring cups to leave inside! Not only will you save on bulky packaging, in your cupboards and pantry, but you can refill your ingredients by buying them in the bulk section at your grocery store, which can be a LOT cheaper than buying their packaged counterparts!
Corral your produce that doesn’t need to be kept in the refrigerator in a cute wire basket. It looks pretty on your countertop and it’s easy to tell if you’re running out of something.
Use Command hooks to hang up your oven mitts and pot holders near your oven. This frees up space in your drawers and keeps them handy where you need them most.
You can also use Command hooks to hang your pot lids inside of your cupboard doors. I used two on the bottom to support the lid, and then one on top upside-down to hold it in place. I previously had my pot lids sitting on a shelf in the cupboard, so this simple solution freed up a lot of space for me!
Create a station by your stove for all your most-used cooking items. I found a great small platter at Home Goods and put my olive oils and a ramekin of sea salt, since I use those all the time for cooking. It looks pretty and organized, and it’s a great way to use the small, awkward section of countertop next to my stove.
If you drink a lot of coffee or tea, create a station for that. We have a Keurig Vue machine that we use every morning, so that stays on the counter along with a rotating stand for the Vue cups.
Coffee add-ins, as well as our collection of loose teas and tea bags, are stored in their own cupboard. It’s a very narrow cupboard, but it fits all of our coffee and tea necessities perfectly.
Another area that needed a lot of help was the spice cupboard. I had to push everything around to find any given spice while cooking, so it wasn’t a very functional setup. I bought this tiered spice rack for around $8 at Home Goods and I’m so happy I did! Now I can see all of the spices I have in my cupboard, which will hopefully keep me from buying duplicates all the time! And the spices I use most are right there at the front, ready for action.
Above the spices is a smaller shelf where I have all of my stuff for baking (besides the dry bulk ingredients). Now when I’m in the mood to bake, all of my baking-specific ingredients are all in one place, ready to go. You could even put all of these in a box together, label it, and store it in the pantry or a drawer somewhere.
Another great way to save space is to store your cutting boards, sheet pans, and baking pans vertically instead of horizontally with the help of a vertical bakeware organizer. I love this because it is SO much easier and less frustrating than having to move everything to get one pan out every single time you need one. And this shelf never gets out of control, because I don’t just toss pans in there after washing like I might if everything were stored flat.
Other ways to get organized in the kitchen…
Use hooks to hang your measuring cups and spoons on the inside of a cupboard door.
Using fridge and freezer storage bins can help to eliminate clutter and make things more accessible. Plus you can maximize your fridge space by stacking the bins on top of each other!
Inexpensive over-the-door pocket organizers can be hung from the back of your pantry door, and can help keep snacks, packets, and other small pantry items organized.
Putting like items together in storage bins can help keep deep cupboards organized, and make it much easier to find what you’re looking for. Simply find the appropriate bin (like “small appliances”), pull it out, and remove what you want! No more digging and stretching.
Drawer dividers are a simple and inexpensive way to tackle a cluttered kitchen drawer. Everything has its place!
If you’ve got open wall space in your kitchen, use it! There are all kinds of racks, rods, and hooks that can be installed easily and be used to organize and display pots, utensils, spices, and more. Get creative!
And last but not least…
GET RID OF WHAT YOU DON’T NEED. If your kitchen feels cluttered and disorganized, use this as an opportunity to go through your stuff and figure out what you can sell, donate, or give away. For instance, my husband and I currently have around a dozen coffee mugs in our cupboard. And for some reason, it only recently occurred to us that maybe two people don’t actually need twelve coffee mugs. We donated the majority of them, and now we have a LOT more space in that cupboard to use for other things!
How do YOU stay organized in the kitchen?