When you were first checking out your house, you were amazed by its amazing kitchen. But once you bought it and moved in, your kitchen will be the most overused room in the house. After all, the kitchen receives a lot of foot traffic daily, and a simple Friday dinner can quickly go from pristine to chaotic. Any homemaker would understand how time-consuming and tiring it is to keep a kitchen spick and span. But there are plenty of ways to keep things tidy and organized, even as you plow through a big Thanksgiving meal.
1. Rethink your kitchen storage
It’s already a given to have plenty of storage in the kitchen. But a key strategy is to know what to put where. An efficient kitchen should have drawers for utensils and dinnerware, overhead counters and shelves for food and kitchen tools, hanging racks for pots and pans, cabinets for trash bins and cleaning materials, and an easy-to-access pantry. If you don’t have a system for storing these items, your kitchen will be a mess and could make cooking and cleaning stressful. This is why customized cabinets are a much better option compared to pre-manufactured ones at the home depot. Your storage should match with your needs and cooking style, and with custom cabinets and drawers, you can dictate how you’re going to sort, organize, and store your food and kitchen items.
2. Designate work stations
If you have wide countertops and a huge island, it’s easy to get tempted to use all of it as your work station. But without assigning dedicated work areas, your meal preps could get messy. Knowing where to knead the dough, chop vegetables, and prepare marinades is a simple but effective way to make cooking a breeze. It’s important that you stick to this order, as well, to avoid cross-contamination. For instance, slicing vegetables or fruits that you’ll eat raw on a surface where you chopped raw meat can be a health hazard.
3. Organize based on ergonomics
Ergonomics is basically all about achieving efficiency in any workspace. A truly ergonomic kitchen means that anything you need for food preparation, cooking, and washing is within easy reach. This means that when organizing cabinets and drawers, make the ones you regularly use the most visible and easy to grab. The “work triangle,” which includes the sink, the cooktop, and the food prep station, should be close enough to each other for you to do seamless work. Safety is also a key factor, and it involves not placing heavy and sharp objects overhead or putting frequently used items in places that would require you to duck too low or stretch too high. This simple trick can help you avoid injuries and make kitchen work faster and easier.
4. Use the appropriate food containers
The pantry is often the biggest source of clutter, stains, and disarray, given that you often keep getting items from it and refilling it regularly. Condiments would spill from their bottles, spices, and grains will scatter to hard-to-clean areas, and so on. To make sure your sundries, condiments, and other pantry items stay fresh and in place, use the proper container for each product. Use long, narrow, and airtight containers for spaghetti, for instance, and use big enough containers for oats, nuts, and flour to squeeze in a scoop. And, of course, don’t forget to label your containers and arrange them in order of importance and use frequency.
A clean and organized kitchen is a safe and efficient kitchen. Make meal prepping for the family more fun and less chaotic by following these simple tips.