“A place for everything and everything is in its place” – Benjamin Franklin

Organize your kitchen and you’re set up for cooking at home. Because, really, who looks forward to cutting up carrots and onions on a cluttered counter top? Certainly not me!

The moment my kitchen island is clear (i.e. paper stuff, kids toys, water bottles, and breakfast crumbs) my mind shifts and creating in the kitchen is exciting again. It’s like facing an open road full of possibilities. Simply put, an organized kitchen helps you cook!

Here are the keys to kitchen organization…

  1. Everything is in its place
  2. You have all the tools you need
  3. You know where all your tools and ingredients are
  4. All the ingredients you need are in the pantry, refrigerator, and/or freezer
  5. Your cookbooks and recipe box (or tablet) are in your kitchen or very close by

Here are some of the ways an organized kitchen helps you cook.

Easier Planning

When your goods are organized, it’s much easier and faster to make your grocery list. You can quickly peak in the pantry or refrigerator or freezer to see what you already have. When you can quickly see what you’re out of and what you have plenty of, you know what to put on your grocery list. When it’s dinner time, you have everything you need to cook the meal you planned.

Ingredients At Their Best

Clearing the clutter also means tossing expired food. Since there’s no sense in keeping some 4 year old hot sauce, get rid of it! Clearly it’s not used enough to justify the space it occupies. It’s never fun to get set up to cook and realize the quinoa you dug out of the pantry is rancid.

Save Time

When you have an organized kitchen, it simplifies food prep leading to less time until dinner. Having a place for everything makes tools and ingredients easy to find. Finding the spice you need, the strainer for your pasta, and the mixing bowl for your salad are all done in a snap. You can’t get back the 5 minutes you spent looking for a whisk or measuring spoon, but you can save 10 minutes by keeping all your tools in their place.

Grouping all related foods together in the pantry means less time you need to gather ingredients. No looking for that can of tomatoes in 3 different places before giving up!

Be Inspired

Most importantly, having a clear counter top or work area helps meal inspiration flow. Who wants to cook when you first have to clear a paper mess? And along the way, you see a bill you need to pay and now you’re frustrated. There are so many ways to sort and store paper clutter, you’ll want to keep trying different methods until you get your system down. I have a little spot reserved in my pantry and when the paper fills up the space, I take it out and go through it (that’s the theory anyway 🙂 ).

In Closing

When your kitchen is organized, you’re more likely to want to cook at home and less likely to think of it as a chore. Now that’s healthy. And that’s how a little organization can be the helping hand you need in the kitchen.

Happy eating!