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How to Organize Your Kitchen

Keeping your kitchen organized is essential, whether you're an accomplished chef or an occasional cook who doesn't spend much time preparing meals. It's not always easy, though, unless you have the right tools to keep clutter at bay.

From the pantry to the countertops, organizing your kitchen is easier when you have a strategy and the right structure. Choosing your organizational tools carefully can help you prepare food more efficiently and even make cleanup easier, which means you'll save time and your space will look better.

Counter Top Organization Tips

Using containers where appropriate can help you manage the mess and make finding what you need a snap. Canisters, storage containers and utensil holders, each designed for different purposes, can add a touch of class to your countertops and make your kitchen an easy-to-work-in space that doesn't stress you out.

SMEG Full Size Refrigerator

  • Canisters for dry goods: Canisters designed for coffee, flour, sugar and other dry goods (cookies, too) can free up cupboard space and serve as decorative elements. They're also ideal for spices and other items you frequently use while cooking because they're always accessible and easy to get into. These canisters can be made from metal, plastic, wood or glass - whatever matches your decor.
  • Utensil holders: Made to corral ladles, spatulas, wooden spoons and all kinds of other utensils that don't belong or don't quite fit in the silverware drawer, utensil holders can be a life-saver when you're cooking. You'll never have to dig around for the right utensil again because they're all at your fingertips, and these ultra-handy storage containers prevent your flatware drawer from becoming a cluttered mess.
  • Paper towel holders: A sturdy paper towel holder designed for countertop use is an indispensable asset in the kitchen. You'll always know where to reach when you have a spill or other minor mess, and the holder protects the paper towel from getting wet or otherwise soiled when you're not using it. To keep even more counter space free, opt for a wall-mounted paper towel rack.
  • Fruit bowls and baskets: A fruit bowl that matches your decor definitely adds a touch of style to your countertop or table, and it keeps healthy snacks front-and-center instead of hidden away in the refrigerator. The right fruit bowl or basket will look great and keep things looking tidy and well cared-for.
  • Oil and vinegar sets: A beautiful oil and vinegar set - particularly one that matches your other containers - is a great way to store these two liquids on your countertop. Many oil and vinegar sets come with bases that make them ideal for serving, too.
  • Butter dishes: A decorative and functional butter dish looks great while you're serving, and the best part is that it'll fit right into the butter compartment in the refrigerator, as well. A lid seals in moisture and keeps your butter fresh, and you can take it from the fridge to the table (and back) without any special preparation.

Cupboard and Pantry Organization Tips

Keeping your pantry and cupboards well-organized makes cooking a lot easier; you'll be able to find things faster and access everything quickly. Whether your pantry is small or spacious, you can maximize your space by adding storage to the door, stashing empty containers properly, sorting items by category and using bins for deep shelves.

Utility Kitchen Canisters - White

  • Door storage: Installing wire racks or portable shelving inside your pantry door is the perfect way to increase storage space without compromising convenience. Ideally, you'll put frequently used items in the wire racks or on the portable shelves to keep them within easy reach.
  • Storing empty containers: Stack your empty containers, such as reusable lunch containers, and keep the lids inside a basket. You can also use plate racks to store them, which can keep things organized and help you take advantage of unused space.
  • Use clear, stackable storage containers for dry goods and loose items: When you use shelf-sized containers to corral loose snacks and dry goods that aren't in neat enough boxes, you'll be able to capitalize on space that you wouldn't ordinarily use (and maybe you'll even have some left over) without containers. The key is to find clear and stackable containers so you can easily access everything you need.
  • Sort items by category: It's tough to find the condiments when they're between canned goods and behind cereal boxes, so organize your pantry by category. Keep all cans, pasta and its accoutrements, and other dry goods together so you know where to look when you're hunting for something you need.
  • Use bins for deep shelves: Most pantries don't have an optimal design; many have deep shelves that aren't very practical. Use bins on your deepest shelves so you can pull everything out at once. Alternatively, you can install roll-out shelves - but attractive bins are just as neat and don't require any elbow grease.
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