Two Simple Ways to Organize Your Kitchen

by Theresa on March 7, 2009 · 4 comments

Organize your kitchen with these simple tips! Want to stay on top of kitchen clutter but always keep putting it off until another day? It sometimes seems like a daunting task. Tired of fumbling through your kitchen drawers or pantry cupboard to find what you need?  If we could organize two things in the kitchen it would be kitchen cupboards and drawers. Those are the two biggest time wasters in most households. Here are some quick, helpful tips on how to organize your pantry, cupboards and drawers.

How To Organize A Kitchen Drawer

Tired of all those junky kitchen item...half of which you don't use or need? It's a bit dangerous when you start stabbing your fingers on those sharp kitchen knives.  Professional organizer, Mary Astadourian shows us a few simple steps to cleaner kitchen drawers.

Creating Space & Removing Clutter:
How To Organize A Kitchen Drawer

  1. Empty your drawer completely so you can see everything you have in it.
  2. Here's one idea for organizing drawers.

  3. Group similar items - Serving utensils, knives and spatulas can be grouped to help you see what you have and what you need. If you have too many of one type of item, you can get rid of it.
  4. You can use drawer dividers and containers to split your drawer up into manageable sections. If you have odd-shaped drawers, you can get smaller, individual drawer containers. Then it’s easier for you to customize the layout to your space. It's a good idea to measure your drawers before you go container shopping.
  5. Now it’s easier to put everything back into your drawer keeping like items together. Everything now has a place and fits perfectly!

How to Organize a Kitchen Pantry

It's frustrating and time consuming when you have to hunt to find what you need in either your kitchen pantry or your kitchen cupboards. Also when you want to do a grocery run, you're not sure what you're out of. Tall cupboards and shelves are a problem since you can't see the cans that are right at the back.  Here's how you can put your pantry in order.

Creating Space & Removing Clutter:
How To Organize A Kitchen Pantry

  1. Take everything out of your pantry shelves so you can see what you've got. You might have some multiple items such as things you bought over and over again because you didn't know you had one already. You might even find a few surprises in there!
  2. Ideas on how to organize a kitchenPut everything in like groups. You can put the canned goods, the bread foods and the snacks in different groups. As you're grouping you can check the foods' expiration dates and freshness.
  3. Now you can look inside your cupboards and think through how you want everything arranged. Put your grouped foods in containers so it's easier to access and so you can pull them in and out of the pantry.  Loose food can be taken out of the boxes and put into airtight containers. Clear, stackable containers are great to save you space and help you see what's inside.
  4. You've sorted, grouped and containerized all your food items so now the most rewarding step. Put your food back into your pantry. Move things around and experiment with how to get the best fit. Keep things you use frequently towards the front and at eye level. I love the idea of having step organizers for deep shelves. Now you can see what's way at the back.
  5. Once you've decided where everything should go, label the container or spot on the shelf. This will help you keep it in the same spot. If you want to change the container's contents remember to change the label too.

Organize your kitchen tackling these two problem areas seems the best place to start. Sometimes you just need quick and easy ideas on how to get out of a rut to start making your life a little easier. I'm starting to sound like Miss Suzie Homemaker here. I'm far from it!  :-) Here are two more interesting and informative yet simple tips on green cleaners.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Milkmaid March 8, 2009

That drawer organizing video is so uninspiring! Where is the beauty in the finished product? I would never be able to keep a drawer like that organized. Did you see all the peripheral items stuffed in the back and along the side?

If I’m going to take care of something, it needs to look nice in the end. I make my bed every day because I love how it looks when it’s made. The same will be true for my drawers.

I realize that the video is offering an economical option with the little plastic compartments, but I know myself well enough to know that for me to keep a drawer organized it’s got to look better, classier than the finished product in the video.

I’m looking at custom options & some of the expandable wood options. So far, the best I’ve found are the organizers at They are on the high end, but would probably be worth it. The custom acrylic ones are an option too, but I like the classy wood look better.

I just can’t stomach spending money on that cheap, plastic stuff.

2 Theresa March 8, 2009

I guess everyone has their own preference. Some of us just prefer the simple plastic drawer organizers. I guess if you prefer quality you can go for the nice wooden ones. Thanks for the update!

3 Chris June 4, 2010

When I orchestrated the complete renovation of my 1950s kitchen in 2006, while the painters, carpenters and counter installers were working busily, I removed all my drawers and put them on the floor in the living room in order to see everything at a glance. I saved and reorganized all useful tools and gadgets and gave away or trashed what was not; I made sure every plastic container had a matching lid and if not, out it went. Saved lota of space. I also filled a sturdy colorful crate with seldom-used but handy gadgets and moved that to my pantry, which freed up more space in the kitchen. My drawers are mostly filled with chef’s knives (I used to be a sous chef); cooking tools; plastic wraps, baggies and foil products; pot holders, clean hand towels and counter cleaning cloths. Under the sink is strictly for cleaning supplies. The plumber gave me a good tip: he advises to avoid storing anything too close to the pipes and avoid bumping into pipes, as they are fragile.

Some of my kitchen cabinets are so tall that I need a step ladder to reach them and it’s hard to find something in a hurry so I made a hand drawn map of every out-of-reach cabinet and all of its contents and now, when I need something that I seldom use, I can search the map and climb up once, instead of climbing up and hunting through every cabinet. I keep this map with my recipe file, in a plastic sleeve so it stays clean and is easy to find in a hurry.

I love cooking all sorts of exotic meals so I have many wonderful spices but the shelf where they are stored became too cluttered for easy access and the spices were in store-bought jars of all sizes and shapes with all sorts of lids. I shopped for 100 inexpensive but good glass jars with nice lids and shaker tops, typed computer labels for every spice, adhered the labels to the tops of the lids, and stood all the spice jars in alphabetical order and set them in a large rectangular plastic tub which fits in a kitchen cabinet. When I need a spice, all I have to do is glance over the alphabetical labels (which face upward) and find what I need, or pull the tub out of the cabinet and set it on a counter while I’m cooking – saves time and looks neat, occupies the minimum of space even though my spices are a big part of my cooking arsenal and a major investment.

I enjoy this site – just found you – thanks, everyone!

4 Geetika September 6, 2010

@ Chris: Its amazing to see how methodical you are. I am so impressed. I too want my things to be organised according to categories. Gets difficult though when you have servants and other family members in the same kitchen. But will do it someday. its nice being crazy about these little things. You get a satisfaction after setting things right.
Take care..