Kitchens are often one of the most challenging rooms to organize. There are countless gadgets, tools, and ingredients that can make cooking easier and dishes more delicious, but you need to find systems and techniques that will make your time in the kitchen efficient and frustration-free. Thankfully, since you just moved, you’ve likely already completed one of the most essential components of organization: decluttering. You can also be thankful that there is a plethora of tips and tricks that organization professionals have already devised for your convenience. Here are a few.

1. Think About Your Steps

When you’re cooking or putting items away, for efficiency, you’re going to want to minimize the number of steps that you take. That means organizing your kitchen in zones so that tools and ingredients are within reach or only a step or two away. For example, place your spices above the stove, knives next to a pull-out cutting board, and dishes near the dishwasher.

2. Use Space and Storage Tools Creatively

Especially in small kitchens, it’s valuable to use all the space available. Hanging pots and pans above an island and displaying your favorite dishes on the wall doesn’t just save space, it’s also stylish. The inside of a pantry door is also a great place to hang cooking utensils. Also, don’t feel hampered by what something is called. Just because something is intended for the bedroom or bathroom doesn’t mean it wouldn’t work well in a kitchen. Try hanging a shoe organizer over the back of a pantry door.

3. Be Transparent

It’s tempting to think that having plenty of places to hide clutter will keep your kitchen looking tidy, but it also encourages disorganization. Stuffing too many items behind closed cabinets is easy. If you’d like to try a different look, cabinets without doors are a viable alternative. You can also place often-used items, such as flour and sugar, in clear containers. This kitchen-organization strategy makes your ingredients easy to find, and you’ll be able to take inventory of your stock quickly the next time you make your shopping list.

4. Have a Plan for Stray Items

Clutter often builds when we don’t know how to classify things. Mail, pens and pencils, and notepads usually end up in the kitchen because we don’t know where else to put them. If you like keeping your unopened mail in the kitchen, have a basket on the wall or counter. Also, make sure that the basket isn’t too big. As the basket becomes full, sort through it and discard what you no longer need.

You’re in a new kitchen in your new house. Get off to a fresh start and use these tips and tricks to build a more organized and less stressful kitchen. 

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