The kitchen is the heart of the home, sure. Maybe that explains why the kitchen is also likely the messiest room in a home too? To be fair, a lot goes on in there—cooking, chopping and baking, but if your house is like mine it’s also the spot for art projects and stealing a few minutes away for work too.
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We’ve had to come up with some unique kitchen organization ideas along with a few kitchen organization DIY ideas, and since I know so many other moms struggle with the same, I’m sharing my favorites!
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Kitchen Cabinet Organizing Ideas
Not too long ago, our cabinets were one of my biggest sources of frustrations. Keeping my cabinets organized before children was enough of a task, all on its own.
Thanks to an active and curious toddler, the bottom cabinets were even more difficult to utilize and the upper cabinets felt stuffed to the brim. Thankfully, that’s no longer the case!
Nothing in the world is quite so frustrating as having to dig to the back of the cabinet for that one thing you need in the moment, or having an avalanche of sippy cups and plastic tumblers literally tumble through your arms. Luckily, there is hope for you and your cabinets! Here’s what worked for us:
Take everything out of the cabinets and start over.
Gasp! Yes, I heard it. I know how often the most important thing we try to do is not make a big and visible mess of something that is seemingly small and carefully tucked away. This one’s an exception, because you can’t fix the mess without spreading it out first.
Look, I get it—often it is way easier to stick with a bad system because it’s already in place. Break it off by starting from scratch. Think about what you use most frequently and the easiest places to reach when you decide where to put things in kitchen cabinets. One big change we made was moving containers for leftovers up next to our plates. They are easy to grab and see—no more lost lids!
Related: How to Have a Clean Home with Little Kids
Install drawers. One of the biggest game-changing kitchen cabinet organizing ideas is to install drawers in your lower cabinets. You can do this with just about any cabinet—just grab an installation kit off of Amazon or at a home improvement store. No more digging in the back of the bottom cabinets! Just be sure to measure your space so you don’t waste time and money on something you can’t use.
Use risers. If you are lacking in cabinet space, one kitchen organization DIY idea is to add risers or extra shelves to your cabinets. You can easily do this as a DIY by placing a baking sheet or even a sturdy piece of cardboard between two layers of glasses, for example. You can also purchase metal kitchen shelf inserts online.
Store items vertically. An effective yet under-utilized way to make more storage is to grab unlikely kitchen organizing products and put them to use. A great example is using a magazine storage bin to “file” reusable water bottles in, or attaching the magazine holder to the inside of your cabinet door to house pot lids.
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Put a tension rod to use. Use a tension rod to store spray bottles underneath your kitchen sink or create slots using tension rods to hold your pans upright in your cabinets.
Utilize the inside of your cabinet doors. Often, this prime space goes to waste! In addition to the ideas above, consider hanging a dry erase board or notepad to write down meal plans or needed ingredients. You can also use the area to add hooks or small shelves that can hold spices, plastic measuring utensils or an extra set of dish towels.
Easy Kitchen Organization DIY Ideas
Don’t worry – these kitchen organization DIY projects are totally do-able. Sometimes it’s just fun to point to something in your home and say you did it, right? These projects are super affordable and most just take minutes, which is nice too!
Put a pool noodle to use. Did you know there are hundreds of pool noodle hacks out there? Here is one of my favorite uses: stick a pool noodle inside a drawer to keep utensil holders and other items from sliding to the back. How’s that for a kitchen organization DIY?
Make use of an empty wall. The one thing most kitchens could use more of is storage. Utilize an empty space to create a freestanding pantry using an Ikea bookshelf or a wire rack. Or, add floating shelves above your kitchen table and decorate them with pretty and practical items like ice buckets or serving plates.
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Utilize space above the stove. If you have available space, install a small shelf or two. This can be used for cooking sprays, oils and spices, rather than have them shoved in a cabinet.
Install pegboard. Another one of the easy DIY kitchen cabinet organizing ideas is to add a pegboard in your kitchen. You can install some in the back of cabinet doors or within your pantry. Use them to hold cutting boards, pans, and oven mitts. If they end up in a more frequently visible spot, they’re also a great place to stick chore charts, shopping lists, report cards and pictures your little ones draw. This can keep your fridge looking clean and prevent fall-off (or in the case of toddlers that can reach, TEAR-off).
Other Kitchen Organizing Products and Ideas
There seems to be no shortage of kitchen organizing products to buy. I’ll be honest with you all and say some are worth the purchase and some aren’t. It’s difficult to know in advance without a little recommendation from those who come before.
Very worst case scenario, you typically have options in returning items, particularly if they are not the quality of dimensions that were advertised. Shop smart here and you’ll do yourself a world of favors.
Here are some of my favorite things to use for organizing the rest of our kitchen.
Put food in baskets. Particularly within your pantry and fridge or freezer. You can use a wire basket that is labeled for snacks in each space and fill it with yogurt, string cheese, crackers or whatever else people in your home like to snack on. You can also get a cute basket or bowl for your countertop and store fresh fruit like bananas or potatoes in it.
Related: Organizing your Closet for Under $30
Grab a six-pack. Nothing is worse than the inevitable sort-and-swap that comes from too many condiments in space that just never quite seems to perfectly match all those little and big bottles that find their way into your condiment slots. You can keep those fridge door shelves easily organized by putting condiments in your favorite beer or soda’s six-pack holder. You can also find plain soda/beer holders online if you’d prefer—either way, no more condiments tumbling out of the fridge!
Use clear containers. One of my favorite kitchen organizing products! We’ve all seen how much space is wasted by huge and largely empty cereal boxes or chunky bags that leave your food susceptible to pests and being crushed under other products. Whenever possible, use clear airtight containers in your pantry instead of bulky food boxes. This allows you to see how much of an item is remaining and they stack really well in the right space.
Make it magnetic. A thin magnetic strip can be utilized on your backsplash to hold knives or other metal utensils. You can also pin reminders or lists to the strip with the addition of a few nice fridge magnets. As a bonus, make the magnets fit your theme and you have an entire new space to jazz up for the holidays or that special occasion. Just make sure the strip is up out of the reach of tiny hands if you’re placing sharps on it!
Grab a kitchen cart. Sometimes, the best things come on wheels—including kitchen items! If you have small electronics like a pressure cooker or slow cooker that are bulky to store, consider finding a small kitchen cart they would fit on. It can be wheeled into the kitchen when needed and stored in the laundry room, pantry or a nearby closet when it isn’t. The best thing is that if you have a storage area for these types of items, you can literally just offload whatever you don’t need and keep this cart working double-time for all the mobile utilities you could possibly need. This is an amazing and unique kitchen organization idea that can literally be scaled to every room in the house, including the bathroom, the garage, and the tool shed!
No matter what organization method you choose, I hope these kitchen organizing products and ideas come in use for you. Do you have any organizing tips or tricks to share? I’d love to hear them—I’m always looking for new ideas.