Live clutter free. Live chaos free.™
The kitchen is the most used room in the house – and subsequently in many homes – can be the messiest! It takes constant maintenance to keep things clean and orderly. Dust, stickiness, and even trash accumulate so easily in this space. Things can be even trickier if you have kids or a husband who just doesn’t know where things are. Maybe you try to declutter and clean routinely but somehow things just don’t manage to stay in order.
Although the kitchen isn’t the easiest room to declutter, after going through and implementing these 4 steps, hopefully, your kitchen will not only be clean and organized but will also be much easier to maintain so you can keep it that way. Before we start, here are a few things you can keep on hand to make the job go more quickly and smoothly; garbage bags, storage containers/boxes, and shelf liners.
1. Remove EVERYTHING & wipe it down
It’s going to be difficult to declutter all sides of the kitchen at once, so it’s best to do everything one shelf or cupboard at a time. Decide where you want to start and remove every last item from those shelves and cabinets. Spray and wipe down all the cabinets. You can put shelf liners in if you want.
2. Throw away all expired/unwanted/unused items
Go through each item and remove the stuff you don’t use/has expired and toss it in the garbage. (Be careful of breakable or flammable items, and be sure to dispose of them appropriately.) It’s a lot easier to have a clean, organized kitchen when you get rid of all the unnecessary junk. Do you really need takeout menus when you can just go online to view menus these days? If there are any plastic storage containers that have no matching lids, recycle them or repurpose them to store other items. If there are older pots and pans you don’t use, remove them from the cabinets and put them in storage if you don’t want to get rid of them entirely. Plastic bags and aluminum cans can also be recycled.
3. Group together like items
Now that you’ve gone through and let go of everything you don’t need, your only left with the stuff you do…YAY! Start by going through these items and dividing them up into like categories. For example, place all the spices together, all the grains together, all the pasta, etc. Use storage boxes or containers to divide them up and label them so there’s no confusion with anyone in the house. I like to keep an extra cardboard box on hand for “Things that Go Elsewhere”. Don’t let odd items hold you up and stop you from moving forward, if you’re not sure where something goes or what you want to do with it, put it in this box and tackle it at the end.
If there are still items leftover that you just don’t want to get rid of, even if you hardly use them f you use them at all - put them in storage. Label the boxes properly (“Kitchen De-Clutter”, “Christmas Kitchen Set”, etc...) and put them away in the attic, garage, or any other storage space you have.
4. Place things you use frequently in the most accessible places.
You know things are bad when it’s time to cook dinner and you spend several minutes trying to remember where you last placed the cooking oil or spray can, or when it’s harder to reach plates you use regularly than it is to reach plates you only use on special occasions. Use this opportunity to think strategically about where dishes, tools, cooking supplies, etc. should be placed in a way that makes sense as you navigate your way around the kitchen. This is the perfect chance to rearrange things in a way that will work for YOU keeping in mind your needs in the kitchen.
……….and that’s it! Easier said than done, right? Once you get into it with a determined mind though, it can be kinda fun! I sure feel satisfied after a good deep clean. P.S. – you can use these exact same 4 steps to clean out your fridge!
Here are a few extra helpful tips that may help you in decluttering the kitchen:
Use wall space if you need extra room.
Even after getting rid of all of the junk, if the kitchen still appears to be cluttered, it’s time to consider organizing vertically. Install some floating shelves on the walls, or hang up a door rack, in which you can store lighter items. Adhesive hooks or cork boards can be placed on the inside of cabinets doors and/or the pantry door, from which you can hang measuring cups, serving tools, dish towels, etc.
Separate kitchen tools depending on the cooking type.
Put all baking necessities, like measuring cups, wooden spoons, whisks, rolling pins, and silicone spatulas in one drawer. Put all of your grilling items, like metal spatulas, tongs, and a meat thermometer in another drawer. If you tend to bake more than grill, place the baking tools in a place where you can more easily access them, or vice versa.
Decide whether to turn the kitchen decluttering/cleaning into a family project.
The plus side of doing it all by yourself is that nobody will get in your way and you won’t have to worry about anybody making a mistake. On the other hand, if you can trust that your spouse and kids are capable of understanding the rules, and knowing what is expected of them, the project could be completed a lot more quickly. For instance, you could assign one person to check the expiration dates on everything and another person to gather up all of the recyclable items.
Good luck with your kitchen declutter - if you read this through and implement it I am sure you will be successful and in love with your new and improved clean kitchen!