I recently taught a workshop about Meal Planning and Organizing the Kitchen. Here are some of the tips for organizing the kitchen I shared with the workshop participants:
1. Start with surface clutter. Surface clutter is stuff on the countertops, stuff on top of the fridge, stuff on the table and chairs that belongs in the cabinets or even in another room.
2. Clean off the fridge. Get rid of the cutesy little magnets and pieces of paper on the fridge. Your kitchen will look instantly less cluttered.
3. Take baby steps. Start in one corner of the kitchen and work your way around the room. Organize one cabinet or one drawer at a time.
4. Containerize. Airtight containers keep food fresher longer and makes it easier to see what food you have and what you need.
5. Eliminate seldom used gadgets and small appliances. Consider how much room these items take. Ask yourself how often you use them.
6. Purge your cookbooks. Chances are, most of your cookbooks only have a few recipes you really want to keep. Pare down the cookbook collection by donating or giving away those cookbooks. Copy out only the recipes you will use.
7. Make your stuff fit your space. Beware of warehouse shopping. Do you have room for a case of ketchup or 20 rolls of paper towels? Put like items together. Consider creating a pantry if you don't have one. What about making a pantry in a corner of the garage or basement or in a under-used hall or linen closet by adding sturdy shelving.