Maybe you're inspired by the Netflix craze of home organizing shows or perhaps you find it overwhelming. Either way, if you're looking for kitchen organizing tips, we have you covered!
We recommend following these kitchen organizing tips over the course of a few days to simplify the process, but if you find yourself with a free afternoon you may just check everything off this list at once.
Clean out your fridge. Take 15 minutes & check for anything expired, wipe down your jars and bottles (don't forget the lids – they can get pretty gross!), and wipe down all the shelves. Make a note of anything you're running low on or that needs replaced for the next time you're at the grocery store.
Ditch the junky oils for good. Healthy fats and oils are critical for good health: they’re incorporated into our body cells and help create their structure. Building cells from healthy, natural fats is ideal, but unfortunately, man-made, highly processed, unhealthy fats are pervasive. (For more on healthy fats, check out episode #286 and episode #351 of the Balanced Bites Podcast.) Look through your pantry, cabinets, and refrigerator and toss the following oils, along with any product that lists one of these as an ingredient:
- Vegetable oil
- Canola oil
- Corn oil
- Cottonseed oil
- Soybean oil
- Sunflower oil
- Crisco and other butter-like spreads
- Anything hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated
REPLACE liquid oils for cooking, baking, and eating with real butter, preferably grass-fed (or ghee if you need to remain strictly dairy-free), extra-virgin olive oil, avocado oil, animal fats from pastured animals (like bacon fat or schmaltz), or coconut oil (melt or store near heat to use as a liquid).
REPLACE solid fats for cooking and baking with real butter, preferably grass-fed (or ghee if you need to remain strictly dairy-free), coconut oil (room temperature), lard or tallow from pasture-raised pigs or grass-fed cows, or palm shortening, organic and sustainably sourced.
Tackle your freezer. Remove everything (yes, everything!) and toss anything that's been lurking in there for over a year. You'll be surprised by what you find! Before putting everything back, get your cleaning gloves on and use hot soapy water (we're going old-school here, but it's the best for a freezer-situation) to wipe down the inside. Make a note of anything you're running low on or that needs replaced for the next time you're at the grocery store.
Reorganize your pantry. Like the freezer, this next kitchen organizing tip will work best if you take everything (yup, everything) out of your pantry first before even beginning to think about reorganizing. As you're taking everything out, check for expiration dates, then start to sort the items according to the type of food. Nope, don't put them back in the pantry yet – you'll want to see everything in one place before putting anything back – just start creating piles: spices, canned goods, pastas, jars, baking, toddler foods, snacks, sweets, etc. Now that you have everything sorted, you can start putting everything back. Be strategic here – the items you reach for most often (Balanced Bites Spices, perhaps?!) place those at eye level or mid-level. Snacks and sweets you might not want to see every time you open your pantry? Try keeping them in a basket or container up high, or behind other items so they're less easy to see. Make a note of anything you're running low on or that needs replaced for your next grocery store trip.
Restock the essentials. Once your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry are clean, head to the store or order groceries to replenish the essential items. You’ve been taking notes all week, so you should have a list going of what you need.
Audit your storage containers. Who's excited for storage containers (aka: Tupperware)!? This next kitchen organizing tip should be a quick one – take a storage container audit and make sure all of your lids have matching bottoms. Anything that doesn't – toss or find another use for it outside of the kitchen. Want to take this tip to the next level? Check out my post on how to organize your food storage containers for an Instagram-worthy system.
Look under your sink. When was the last time you looked under your sink? Yeah, it can get pretttttty gross down there. It's time to tackle this dark hole of potential nastiness – old moldy sponges, brushes, or toxic cleaning supplies, you name it – get down there and clean things up!
Organize your kitchen utensils. Sort through your kitchen utensils and only keep what you regularly use Be ruthless – you most likely don't need three whisks when one will do the trick. That avocado slicer hanging out in the back corner? A knife will work just fine. Set aside any utensils or gadgets that don't make the cut to donate later.
Declutter your countertops. Next you're going to declutter your countertops. Trust us, you'll have so much more M E N T A L S P A C E to focus on your health goals if you aren't looking at the entire contents of your kitchen every time you go in there. Keep out the essentials… your most used cooking utensils; salt, pepper (and your Balanced Bites Spices, duh!); a fruit and veggie bowl; your most-used kitchen appliances… and store away the rest so it's handy, but not staring you in the face. Give your cabinets and any kitchen windows a wipe down, and you'll be good to go!
Wipe down all exposed appliances. This includes your fridge, dishwasher, coffee machine, blender, etc. Easy peasy!
Wipe down your oven. Sounds innocent enough, right? Wrong! This is where the magic happens, and could probably do with some extra loving. Wipe down the top of your stove (take the burners off if you can) and inside of your oven. If you’re going the non-toxic route, a mixture of baking soda and vinegar can work wonders (just google it!) to cut down on grease & buildup.
Wipe down your backsplash and oven hood. Last but not least, wipe down your oven hood and backsplash and you’re DONE!