24 Basic Organizing Ideas for Your Kitchen

Putting items in designated zones can significantly improve the flow of your kitchen.

Lazy Susan
Photo: Bed Bath and Beyond

As these photos show, what makes a kitchen great is how you organize it.

01 of 24

Turn to a Lazy Susan

Lazy Susan
Bed Bath and Beyond

Contain messes by housing sticky or spillable food items on an easy-to-clean lazy Susan.

02 of 24

Give Cookbooks Space

Cookbook and Utensils
twomeows/Getty Images

Cookbooks are fine on open shelves, so long as they're not exposed to humidity and grease from the fridge or stove.

03 of 24

Start Hanging

Pots and Pans
Brian Bumby/Getty Images

Hang aprons, pot holders, and dish towels on pegs (mount them at least two feet away from the stove).

04 of 24

Store Items by Use

Kitchen Cabinets
Hero Images/Getty Images

Arrange your kitchenware by frequency of use, with everyday dishes on an easy-to-reach lower shelf and special-occasion pieces up above.

05 of 24

Group Similar Objects

Kitchen Plates
Getty Images/ ka2shka

Group objects by purpose and assign them to specific cabinets, as with the bakeware centralized here.

06 of 24

Designate a Cooking Zone

Kitchen Utensils
Felix Oberhage/Getty Images

Create a cooking zone around the stove, storing pots and pans as close to the range as possible.

07 of 24

Stash Like Items Together

Kitchen Drawer
Image Source/Getty Images

Keep plastic bags, wrapping, and kitchen utensils in a drawer near the refrigerator to make quick work of storing leftovers.

08 of 24

Stow Tools Efficiently

Kitchen Utensils

Stow essential tools together within easy reach of your cooking area for efficient food prep.

09 of 24

File Plastic Containers

Tupperware Lids
anand purohit/Getty Images

"File" plastic containers and their tops in orderly zones within the same drawer to keep them readily locatable.

10 of 24

Contain Lids

Cookware Lid
PhotoAlto/Laurence Mouton/Getty Images

Use lid racks to neatly collect the tops of various pots and pans.

11 of 24

Install Shelf Organizers

Kitchen Shelf
The Container Store

Sliding shelf organizers make frequently used gear easy to access.

12 of 24

Divide Drawers

Drawer Divider
Fancy/Veer/Corbis/Getty Images

Drawer organizers keep cutlery neatly separated, so you never have to rummage around for what you need.

13 of 24

Think Double-Duty

Utensil Cups
jin chu ferrer/Getty Images

For no-fuss buffet service, present cutlery to guests in mugs or small pitchers.

14 of 24

Light It Right

Kitchen Lighting
Jacek Kadaj/Getty Images

Even under-the-cabinets space can be well utilized for lighting, an appliance, or, in this case, a dish-towel rod.

15 of 24

Color-Code Kitchenware

Colorful Cookware
Chatuporn Sornlampoo / EyeEm/Getty Images

Pots and pans double as artwork when like-colored kitchenware is put on display.

16 of 24

Put China on Display

Andersen Ross/Getty Images

Use glass-front cabinets to showcase your good china, antique bowls, or even canisters filled with pasta.

17 of 24

Introduce Baskets

Johner Images/Getty Images

Keep open shelves uncluttered by stashing items in airy rattan baskets.

18 of 24

Categorize Food

Kitchen Spices
Stewart Waller/Getty Images

Organize your pantry shelves as you would a library, with food items grouped by category.

19 of 24

Consider See-Through Storage

Wire Basket
The Container Store

Make it a snap for kids to grab snacks on the go with see-through wire baskets.

20 of 24

Stash Items Over the Door

Pantry Organizer
Bed Bath & Beyond

Stash pantry items in the see-through pockets of an over-the-door organizer to virtually eliminate search time.

21 of 24

Roll in a Cart

Rolling Cart
KatarzynaBialasiewicz/Getty Images

Invest in a cart that can transport heavy dishes from kitchen to dining and act as extra counter space for cooking and entertaining.

22 of 24

Hang Pots and Pans

Hanging Pots
Spaces Images/Getty Images

Another way to conserve precious storage space: Hang pots and pans, if your kitchen allows.

23 of 24

Try a Retractable Book Stand

Book Stand
Williams Sonoma

A retractable book stand keeps a recipe at eye level while you're working, then folds back under a cabinet when you're done.

24 of 24

Declutter Counters

everydayplus/Getty Images

Declutter kitchen counters by mounting basics–calendar, phone, and to-do lists–on the wall.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles