How to Organize Kitchen Cabinets and Drawers

How to Organize Kitchen Cabinets and Drawers
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Organize Kitchen Cabinets

When my kitchen cupboards full of plates, glasses, and mugs become so disorderly and I can’t find what I want, I realize it is time to organize kitchen cabinets and drawers again. I think we all like to have the most used items in the front to easily grab when we need them.

Organize kitchen drawersI have even given away the things I don’t use anymore to give me more space. This makes my cabinets more functional and nice-looking.

I always start by emptying one cabinet at a time, put those dishwasher safe items in the machine and clean them to a sparkling shine again. You might want to do all the top cabinets of dishes at one time. I do my pots and pans last because they are in bottom cabinets.

While those are washing, I clean the cabinets inside and out. This works on wood, metal, and those with glass door fronts.

Cleaning Cabinets

Remove the items from your cabinets and put them on your counter, table, or in the dishwasher to refresh and clean the inside. Determine what you can do without such things as old paper plates and Styrofoam® cups. Get rid of the seldom used or never used items to give you more space for the things you use frequently.

Cleaning Cabinets

You can donate your items to a church, Goodwill, Salvation Army or other places to help others with their needs. Recycling is much better than dumping into a landfill.

If you think you need something new, buy it now to organize with the items you now have.

1. Cleaning Cabinets Inside

Cleaning Cabinets InsideWith some old rags or sponge, wipe out the cabinets. If you have a small vacuum cleaner or nozzle on it, suck out the crumbs.

Wipe the food out and wash the outside doors. By removing crumbs and debris, you prevent roaches, gnats, silverfish, and other bugs from living in your kitchen. Yucky! Dry the insides well.

What to Use:Kitchen Cabinet Cream

  • A sink half-full of detergent and warm water;
  • Clear distilled vinegar diluted with warm water in a spray bottle;
  • If you need to scrub, put soda on a wet rag and rub; and
  • If you want to use commercial cleaners, Parker & Bailey® Kitchen Cabinet Cream is a good product to remove grease and dirt inside and out.
  • This is good for wood and wood veneer cabinets.

2. Line the Cabinets

Line your cabinets with non-adhesive products that won’t stick and you’ll never get off. Fresh liners that are washable or rubberized will keep your items from sliding and falling off.

You can use paper, rubber, or vinyl available in many colors, textures, and patterns. The picture on the left is the rubberized liner and the colored ones in the middle are non-adhesive shelf paper with the contact paper liner on the right. All are available on Amazon.com®.

Line the Cabinets

Be sure to measure carefully before buying. Cut the liner to size, insert, and reload your items into your freshly cleaned cupboards.

3. Herbs and Sachet to Deter Bugs

teacup hookI like to hang a bag of herbs from the top of the cabinet inside. I use a teacup hook above the top shelf and the sachet herb sack hangs down out of the way.

This is my favorite on Amazon and it is a #1 best seller. You can use the hooks to hang your tea cups and mugs too.Rakrisa Supplies

The Rakrisa® Supplies purple bags pack of 15 is a natural deodorizer, moth repellent, with the best fragrance lavender scent sachets that I love. The fragrance permeates the kitchen all the time.

Sachets with Tea Tree Oil, Lemon Oil, or Eucalyptus Oil will keep bugs and pests away.

This is a nice fragrant inexpensive set to try. Just put a few drops on cotton balls and put into a bag to hang. Use one oil at a time.

Essential Oils Set

4. Kitchen Cupboard and Drawer Organizers

pull down spice rackFor smaller items in your kitchen use organizers. I like this Rubbermaid® pull down spice rack for my spices. It is easy to find your spices quickly and not needing to take out all of your jars to find the one hiding in the back.

kitchen drawer organizersMy favorite kitchen drawer organizers for my flatware and cutlery are the wooden or bamboo ones that match my wood cabinets. I think you will see how lovely they are to organize yours and the beauty they provide. They come in many configurations and sizes on Amazon.

This one is expandable or leave closed on the sides to fit your drawers. I have one in each of my four drawers that hold utensils and I have many.

5. Organizing Dishware and Cookwarecorner shelf organizers

Many of us like to stack our dishes on the shelves directly. Others like corner shelf organizers such as this one on the right for dinner plates, salad plates, and saucers.

To keep your pots, pans, and skillets from scratching one another, this kitchen cabinet pantry pan and pot lid organizer is just the thing to use. You can get two, and turn the other one on its side to store lids.

Kitchen cabinet pantry pan

If you have many lids, you might prefer this type of lid organizer.

lid organizerThis one has 7 adjustable dividers to keep your lids upright and separate. It only comes in white, has no-slide feet with steel wires coated with ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) plastic to not scratch.

You can also use this for large platters, cutting boards, cookie sheets, muffin pans, baking dishes, pizza pans,and 33 RPM vinyl record albums.

It doesn’t take up too much space and pans can sit next to it.

6. How to Organize Kitchen Counter Tops

Don’t forget to tidy up your counter top now that your cabinets are clean. I know that’s hard to do because I think I need everything that’s there. Clean your toaster inside from the crumbs and outside so that it sparkles. Clean your electric can opener and other items too.

stainless-steel appliancesIf you don’t have canisters for dry things, you might want to get a few. I still have a 4-piece glass set with rubber rings and clamps to seal that are square for flour, sugar, coffee, and tea. They are so beautiful and I have no clue where I got them.

You want to be sure they have airtight lids to keep bugs and dirt out.

This set is stainless-steel to match your stainless-steel appliances or harmonize with your other kitchen décor. These have see-through lids and the set are 4 different sizes if you like your flour, sugar, coffee, and tea on your countertop rather that in their original bags or packages. The clamps are super tight.

7. Store Your Items

How to organize kitchen appliances means if you keep your appliances on the countertop but don’t use them that often you might want to consider putting them in cupboards to give you more space. These for me are my waffle iron, juicer, and food processor. Most of us will use our bread toaster frequently so it can stay out along with the electric can opener.

Utensil holderFor how to organize kitchen utensil drawers you might want to use a utensil holder next to the stove for large wooden spoons, whisks, chopsticks, and other items used constantly.

Mine is a ceramic crock pot from years ago that I love to hold my melon baller, cheese knife, wooden and plastic spoons, and wood spatula for stirring with my ceramic and non-stick cookware.

The cute owl will watch over you cooking and cleaning.

8. Items Stored in Upper Cabinets

These items are used all the time and need to be at your eye level where they are easy to get at.

  • Fine china and stemmed glassware should be stored on top shelves with glasses upside down.
  • Everyday glasses such as water and juice glasses should be on a lower shelf.
  • Mugs and teacups can be hung using hooks or nest together on a lower shelf for easy access.
  • Plates, saucers, and bowls can be stacked or use a corner holder discussed above.
  • If your cabinets have glass door fronts, you might want to put what you want to show off in there.

9. Items Stored in Lower Cabinets

Store your cooking pots, pans, and skillets in the lower cabinets close to the stove. You won’t have to lift these too high and they will be easy to reach on the bottom. The ones you use the least, such as your turkey roaster, or apple corer for jelly, can go in the back.

If you have a lazy Susan on the bottom, that’s a good place to store smaller pots and pans; things you use frequently.

10. Dry Food Storage

Cereal, pasta, baking soda, and baking powder and all other dry items including canned goods should be in their own cabinet separated by cans and dry goods. Spices need to have their own cabinet space too.

11. Dedicated Kitchen Drawers

Now that your flatware has a drawer of its own, you also need a dedicated drawer for small cooking utensils that you use often such as peelers, garlic press, manual can opener, measuring cups, measuring spoons, and the like.

You might use a small drawer close to the stove for dish towels and pot holders. A lower cupboard is good for storing wax paper, aluminum foil, and plastic bags. Some people like them in a drawer.

And don’t forget a junk drawer for often used items such as cellophane tape, cotton swabs to clean small nooks and crannies, a screwdriver, rubber bands, pens, coupons, and other items.

12. Under the Sink

a matThis is the place to keep your dish washing detergent, dishwasher detergent, scouring powder, soap pads for cleaning grimy pots, scourers, rubber gloves, glass cleaner, and maybe the plant food.

I keep all of mine off the floor of the cabinet because sinks and plumbing can leak. This prevents a nightmare cleanup job when not on a mat.

Do not store food in this space under the sink—not even pet food.

Tips to Organize Your Kitchen Storage Spaces

  • Before you wash your cabinets inside, test a small area first to be sure the cleaning product does ruin the finish.
  • Try using the items mentioned above to save space and prevent water damage under the sink.
  • Consider using cabinet liners to keep the area clean and lovely to look at.
  • Think about using herbs/sachets for deterring bugs and keeping the cabinets smelling fresh.
  • Don’t use toxic chemicals such as bleach and ammonia in your cabinets; it’s not necessary. Never mix the two together that can cause respiratory concerns.

Final Thoughts

I hope my ideas for how to organize kitchen cabinets and drawers have been inspiring to do. It doesn’t take all day to complete either. Let your dishes wash and dry as you go and soon it’s all done.

Kitchen Organization Ideas!

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