Cleaning your kitchen and re-doing your cabinets can be one of the highest effort-to-satisfaction ratios out there, and there’s almost no one who couldn’t benefit from these simple tips to maximizing your kitchen storage space.
But first! Some kitchen cabinet and pantry porn to get wArMeD uP.
image via everyday enchanting
image via the kitchn
image via the kitchn
image via we got real
image via HGTV
Tips for Organizing Your Kitchen Cabinets.
First, we’ll begin similarly to the way we started our closet purge. Take everything out of your kitchen cabinets and lay it all out on the table so you can see what you have. It’s helpful to then organize the items into 3 categories.
1. Items that you use everyday like spices, pastas, beans, etc. These items should go in the front of your cabinet where they’re easy to see and access.
2. Items that you use less frequently like flour, baking supplies. These items can be placed into a basket and tucked into the back of the cabinet.
3. Items that are opened and are stale, or items that have expired (yikes). This goes without saying, but the last group should go straight into the trash.
Before you restock your cabinets, be sure to clean the shelves so that there are no crumbs or stray bits of rice. Everything should be sparkling clean for this to be a true cabinet purge that you won’t have to repeat in a months time. You can clean the shelves with a mixture of vinegar and water which is a powerful homemade cleaning product and very cheap to make. Once you’re through with that, it’s time to put the food back in its proper place. It’s helpful to have containers to put food, dried fruit, coffee, pasta, rice and anything else that would benefit from being taken out of the bag so you have easy access to. I strongly suggest purchasing good quality canisters that are airtight and will keep food fresh!
Below are some tips to follow that will make your pantry look bright open and easy to navigate through to get to what you’re looking for.
- Use clear canisters like these so that you eliminate the guesswork when it comes to figuring out what’s in that half open bag of pasta or sad crushed pita chip packet.
- A spice rack is an easy way to keep track of your spices and how much you have left of each one. There’s nothing like grabbing the cinnamon for your morning cup of coffee to find that there is one last pathetic puff of it left.
- Consider using big large food containers like these so that potatoes don’t scatter and produce isn’t sitting directly on tops of shelves or floors.
- Use labels to put a name on everything so that it’s super easy to know what you’re looking at, especially on higher shelves that are out of reach.
- Use quality chip clips to keep bags closed securely and food fresher.
- Group items that are similar. For example, I make a big batch of granola every Sunday and so I have everything I need to make it housed in a large basket at the top of the cabinet. This way I can simply pull it down, do what I need to do and then put it back where it belongs.
- Use undershelf baskets to house things that belong in the pantry but aren’t food such as Ziploc bags, rubber bands, toothpicks, straws, etc.
- Place heavy things like olive oils, big bags of flour and bulk bags of grain on the bottom shelf, or one the floor of your cabinet.
The success of keeping kitchen cabinets well organized and clean is being diligent about doing things the right way, even if they take slightly more time to maintain. I used to be very lazy about making sure things were put away properly and I just kind’ve threw stuff into the back of the cabinet when I was finished with it, which always made my baking endeavors chaotic and looking as if a flour bomb went off. Like the laundry room (to be covered at a later date!) your kitchen space and cabinets shouldn’t feel like a depressing sad black hole of half-opened bags and stale cereal that you’re reluctant to go into.
Follow the tips above and we’ll all be one step closer to have open, clean and beautifully organized cabinets that inspire us to cook more meals at home!