5 Tips for Easy Kitchen Cabinet Organization

Kitchen cabinet organization doesn’t have to be a burden! Here are 5 super-simple tips to help yours function better no matter how much space you have (or don’t).

Kitchens serve as a favorite communal space for many families. It doesn’t matter if you all cook or bake together, or get in and out at different times according to your varied routines – kitchens always require a variety of items to serve each family member’s needs. 

Sometimes, though, storing all these items can seem impossible, especially if the kitchen is small. I’m here to reassure you that there’s almost always a way! 

Today, I’m sharing the keys to your optimal kitchen cabinet organization – a.k.a., 5 smart storage tips I use in just about every kitchen project. 

All these tips are highly customizable and applicable for every family and kitchen size, from petite to spacious. Read on!

Tip #1 – Store Like with Like

This tip involves grouping items that serve a similar purpose together. This makes them easier to find (especially less-often used items), and simplifies the putting-away process, too. Depending on your family’s needs, you can make as many or as few category groupings as you like. 

Some common categories that I find common in various kitchen cabinets organization projects are:

  • Casserole baking dishes
  • Baking pans, including cake, cookie, muffin pans, etc.
  • Entertainment/serving platters and bowls
  • Barware, i.e., specialty glasses, shakers, etc.
  • Leftover food storage containers; this category can be subdivided into plastic and glass
  • Smoothies, including cups, measuring cups, ingredients, etc.
  • Spatulas and cooking spoons
  • Utensils; this category can also be subdivided into entertainment and everyday use, etc.

kitchen cabinet organization with turntables

Tip #2 – Make Use of Vertical Space

Kitchen cabinet organization requires making use of ALL your available space efficiently. Two essential items that just about every kitchen needs are turntables, and shelf risers. 

  • Turntables on high shelves increase the accessibility of out-of-reach items. With a simple spin you can see what you have and reach it without knocking everything else over.
  • Shelves inside the kitchen cabinets also enhance accessibility. You avoid awkward and too-high stacking of objects when trying to pull out a specific dish or ingredient–and cut down on breakage!

Don’t be afraid to get creative depending on the space and your needs–in a pinch, even shoe racks make a very effective option!

Add pull out drawers to lower cabinetsTip #3 – Innovate Your Kitchen Cabinets Organization 

If you aren’t sure how to organize kitchen cabinets efficiently, consider thinking out of the traditional cabinet “box.” You don’t have to maintain cabinets as cabinets; you could turn them into drawers by installing after-market pull-out drawers. Or replace those standard half shelves with more practical organization products. that fit the items you need to store. Similarly, if you don’t have drawer space for spices, tiered shelves, turntables, or back-of-door shelving help make them visible and grabbable.

Tip #4 – Create Sets, with Labels

Sets of jars and containers are easier to organize. Consistent height and design (like those in the main photo at the top of this page), allows you to make the most of the kitchen cabinets organization products, reducing wasted gaps and space. And believe it or not, the neat, streamlined appearance has a way of encouraging people to want to put things back where they should go! 

Adding labels to these sets or even on the organization’s products also makes a significant impact. Add labels on top or front, depending on your kitchen’s unique storage needs. 

If your family (especially young children) tend to put things away willy-nilly in any seemingly available space, you might want to implement the rule I put in place for our house: when in doubt, leave it out! In the long run this can save you time (and money)–and you can always show them where it goes later! If you don’t like the “when in doubt, leave it out” solution, you can always label cabinets, shelves and drawers as much or as little as necessary for your family to figure it out on their own!

Tip #5 – Don’t Forget the Fridge/Freezer

Creating zones/categories of items in the fridge and freezer maximizes the available space, keeps items organized and accessible, and helps you keep track of groceries. In my experience, refrigerators in family homes benefit from the following categories:

  • Jarred foods, i.e., pickles, olives, jellies, salsa, etc.; use a turntable to maximize space and efficiency
  • Sauces and spreads; this category can also use a turntable
  • Leftover zone – any space in the fridge where family knows to look for available leftovers, eliminating them being scattered and forgotten in the back of the fridge 
  • Meat/cheese drawer; use containers to separate and organize different kinds
  • Frozen veggies
  • Small items such as applesauce, yogurt, ranch dip cups, etc., can be stored in containers to prevent them from scattering like confetti.

Bonus Tip: There are no right or standard rules for organizing any space, including your kitchen! The goal should not be to achieve a specific look or adopt a particular method. Instead, it should only focus on your and your family’s needs so everyone at home can find it easy to make the most of the kitchen! 

If you’d like a helping hand with your own kitchen cabinet organization, give me a call; over Zoom or in person, I can take the stress out of creating a system you and your family can live with–and love!

SOS by Lisa | Professional Organizer, Home Organizer
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