Ideas For Organizing Your Kitchen More Efficiently

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Ideas For Organizing Your Kitchen More Efficiently

Efficient Organizing Your Kitchen Ideas

  • Store empty sandwich and freezer bags in an old Kleenex box.
  • Store your hand mixer with the beaters in a basket or wrap cord around the mixer and then put a hook in your cabinet so you can hang the beaters next to it.
  • Keep more than one container of salt on hand. I wash and re-fill old spice bottles with salt. I keep one salt shaker on the table, one on the stove, one with my spices and one with my baking supplies. This can save me many steps a day and with Fibromyalgia you need to save all the energy you can!
  • Place lids for plastic containers in a shoebox and set next to containers.  I use a Velveeta box for smaller lids.

Storing plastic containers and lidsstoring lids for plastic containers

This is all the "plasticware" I have. I keep just the like items together with the lids right next to them. No, I don’t save things like yogurt and sour cream containers (gasp!) but if you do, just do the same thing.

  • Use a magnetic knife holder to store tools in your kitchen. I didn’t have a space for my magnetic knife holder in my new kitchen so I put it up in my mop closet to hold tools that I use in the house.

Storing kitchen tools on a magnetic knife holder

  • Store measuring cups in your canisters. We use a 1 cup measuring cup in the flour, and 1/2 or 1/4 cup in the sugar. This saves always on dishes!

Store measuring cups in your flour and sugar


  • Use a small nail on the inside of a cabinet door by the stove to hang one or two hot pan holders on.
  • Always store the things you use most in your cabinets at eye level.
  • Store like items in the kitchen together. Keep the bread in a cabinet by toaster, tea bags close to the tea kettle, coffee by the coffee pot, coffee pot by the sink, baking supplies by mixing bowls and mixer, etc.
  • Store like items in the fridge together. Keep the things you use together near each other like the mustard, ketchup and mayonnaise or the cheese and lunch meats.
  • If you are short of storage space and cabinets, it doesn’t hurt to store things like large platters, serving dishes and kitchen gadgets that you only use once in a while in another area of the house.


Photo By: Susan Serra


  1. barb~ says

    I try to find creative uses for kitchen appliances when not in use. For instance, I have silk summer flowers inside my white crockpot on top of the refrigerator right now. I stuffed the cord in the pot, and added a little greenery around the edges. Looks pretty sharp and adds lots of color. It makes me happy to see it when I walk in the kitchen first thing in the morning:)

  2. says

    Hi Tawra,
    I appreciate your tips and always learn something new when I visit here. I have also enjoyed your books. Just wanted to say thanks!


  3. says

    RE: plastic storage containers–every few months I go thru mine and match up lids and containers, and throw away any extra lids and/or containers (with the exception of saving 1 or 2 extra containers for pet food scoops or dishes if needed). It helps my cupboard stay much neater and I’ve NEVER regretted throwing any extras away.

    Also–at our local grocery stores the different-size containers go on sale several times/year. Periodically there are also high value coupons in the Sunday papers. I always cut the coupons out so when the containers are on sale I can buy them at a very low price.

  4. Sonya says

    I use the single serving plastic fruit cups (like Dole)in my canisters because they don’t have handles. The few that I have measure to 1/2 cup.

    • says

      Glad to have you with us Tara. I also use the Kleenex boxes to store my plastic grocery bags in. You can get an amazing amount in them. I have a black and white poke a dot and check kitchen now so I took my Kleenex box and just spray painted it black to match. You can do a lot with them.

  5. Carol says

    I would like to know if it is possible to refill the plastic bottles that the Swifter mops use. I really like the one for hardwood floors but find the bottles are too expensive. Thankyou for the recipes on laundry detergent; I finally got mine made– GREAT! It’s only 2 of us now, but I have several grchildren & friends that I share ideas,products, food with so the ideas I get from you, they are a blessing. Thankyou for any help on the Swifter question.

  6. says

    I have had this kitchen for 14 years and it is just not made for me. I finally figured out why.
    I am a person who works from left to right and the kitchen is laid out so you have to work from right to left.
    Can’t do much about it since it would cost a fortune to fix it. Wiring and pipes are in all the wrong places.
    Don has made a few changes for me but the sink is at the end of the counter a double one so nice size but all the space for stacking dishes has to be on the left. So dirty dishes get stacked in one sink and I use the other side to wash and then put the dishes on the left.
    It is liveable but I sure do wish it was more to my type of work habits.

    • says

      Good point grandma. I never thought about that but it is so true. That maybe why some people have trouble with their kitchen working for them but can’t put their finger on why or what the problem is. We lefties run into this problem for many different things like this. So many things feel awkward and then I realize I have to go from the other direction.

  7. Sheri says

    When we moved to this place, I made labels for everything that needed to go into cupboards and drawers. I scoped out my kitchen and laundry room to see where I wanted everything. Then I taped the labels inside the cupboards and drawers so my helpers would know where to put everything without asking. I had a nursing baby at the time. The labels are still there! Just in case someone might forget… It’s been about twelve years.

    It sure looks like I have a lot of cupboard space,but it’s shallow and modular. I have an island that has three parts to it, with walls between each part. For locking things up, that is convenient, but for trying to arrange things to make best use, not so good. I have very little counter space.

    But… My kitchen is still bigger than what most people have for a house on all the world, if they even have a house. I like to keep my life in perspective by comparing it to the rest of the world. Hebrews 13:5

  8. Margie says

    I spend 6 months at a time in two different kitchens and have come up with something that works for me. In one house I have no counter space next to my stove and there is no pantry here in this 100 year old farm house, but lots of cupboards and counter top. In the other house I have a very small kitchen with a lot of pantry space. Since I love to cook and bake and can the spices etc over whelmed me. I have a series of shoe box sized baskets, mostly from thrift stores and garage sales. One contains all the frequently used cooking spices that I can carry to the stove. Another has the baking powder, soda, vanilla, salt and cinnamon that I get down when I am baking. Another has all the other less frequently used spices, another has the cocoa, baking chocolate, colored sugars and tapioca. In all I think there are about 10 of them, most up on that high top cupboard shelf that I really have to stretch to reach. When we go south for the Winter, it is an easy job to transfer the baskets to packing boxes and then to the other kitchen at the other end.

    • says

      Good idea Margie especially when having to take them from one place to another. For years all these famous organizing people would say to put all of your spices together in one drawer or place and put them in alphabetical order. Since they were organizing gurus I figured that is what I should do. The problem was that the alum and allspice that I rarely used was the handiest and the onion salt that I used every meal was buried in the middle. That latest about a week when I learned two lessons. One to keep my stove top cooking spices (onion salt, garlic salt, oregano)by the stove together and my baking spices at my baking center. On rare occasions if I had a spice I used often in both spots I would buy two of them.
      The other thing I learned was just because someone is an expert doesn’t mean their way will work for you. That is why I try to tell our readers to see what works best for them or if something isn’t working then try another way. Each home I have lived in I have had to organize it differently and rarely is it like what the organizing experts say to do.

  9. Roberta McKiski says

    Another organizer that works great anywhere are the empty Swiffer mop boxes. (Or the copycat brand} They fit nicely in my kitchen drawers and have a nice see thru lid to keep items clean.

  10. Keri says

    I live in a home built in 1960. Shortly after we moved in, we put a dishwasher in. But the only place to put it was where my drawers were, whch left me with no, drawers. After searching every where for drawers 15″ wide to fit the only place I had available, I found pre-made cabinet, the only issue, was it had 1 drawer. Then one shelf, and the bottom. We took the shelf out and kept the trash in there, to keep the dogs out. So I have no junk drawers. However; my solution, I bought several plastic shoe boxes. Sorted out everything, normally found in a drawer. into the boxes, added a 3×5 recipe card, labeling what the box contains. Such as, Baking, Blender parts etc. I put these one on top of the other, card facing out, on the top shelf. As far as spatulas, wooden spoons and such, I found an oval brass colored container, with a built in divider, 6 areas. My mixer, is in a gallon freezer bag, after use, it gets wiped down, and then the clean beaters go in the bag as well. Im not sure why, but I keep this with my baking sheets. When you live in an older home, you need to get creative. Thank you for all the great ideas I get from your news letter.

  11. Linda Cabler says

    I use the 4 oz pimiento pepper jars for EVERYTHING. To store buttons, small amounts of food, bobbins, You name it. They hold exactly 4o oz if u need them for an extra measuring cup. Spices stole easily in them when dried from your garden. They make great camping jars to carry mustard, ketchup or mayo. Their use is endless.

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