How to Organize Your Kitchen Counter
Your kitchen counter might be a disordered mess. You store spare appliances, pile junk mail, and leave out dishes you don’t feel like putting away. Your cluttered counter is in serious need of some organization. Removing excess items from your counter is the place to start. After that, organize the things you leave out. Starting up a few ongoing habits will help you keep the counter organized.
Freeing Up Counter Space
Move rarely used appliances to a cabinet.Your counter may store the food processor, waffle iron, and mixing bowl, but it is unlikely that you use these items daily. Clear out some cabinet or pantry space for these large countertop appliances. Leave them in storage except for when you are using them. Put them back as soon as you finish with them.
- If you don’t have much cabinet space, you may have to get more creative. Put some things in a hall closet or even a bedroom closet, if you know you don’t use them often.
Use the top of the refrigerator for more storage.If the top of your refrigerator is not covered by cabinets, it’s a great place for extra storage. Use it for items that you use often but not daily. Store small appliances that don’t fit in the cabinets or your spice rack that’s only for fancy dinners on top of the fridge.
- The size of your fridge limits how easy it is to store things on top of it. For tall fridges, store things you only rarely need because you can pull a footstool up to it when necessary.
- Store items like soda or juices on top of the fridge so you can easily restock when you run out.
- If you are tall enough to reach, move your microwave to the top of the fridge to free up a big section of your counter.
Trade your knife block for a magnetic knife strip.A nice big set of knives is often displayed with a knife block, but this takes up valuable counter space, too. Install a magnetic knife strip over the section of counter where you most often use the knives.
- The wall strip uses space that is otherwise wasted. It also clears up another small section of your counter.
Install a towel bar or a rack on the side of the countertop.A visible end of the countertop is a rarely used part of the counter, but it gives you many options. A towel rack with S-hooks can hang up pots and pans or utensils. A small wooden rack can store spices, oven mitts, or extra stuff that ends up on the counter.
- If you screw a bar or rack into the side of the counter or cabinets, be sure the screws go into a sturdy part of the cabinet.
Organizing Items on the Counter
Set up a cake stand by the sink to hold cleaning supplies.If your dish soap, rag, scrubbers, and sponges are scattered around the sink, organize them into one place. Pick up a simple cake stand and place all of the dishwashing supplies on it.
- Look for a cheap cake stand at a thrift store.
Store baking goods in a set of decorative canisters.If you keep your flour, sugar, salt, oatmeal, or various other baking items on the counter, a set of storage jars will keep them organized. You have almost unlimited options, from glass jars to plastic rectangular canisters.
- Look for a set of stacking containers to keep this stuff even more condensed.
- It’s also a good time to think about whether you need to keep that stuff on the counter. You may use it less than you think you do, so move it to the cabinets.
Keep all your sticky items on a tray.Your counter may be the place you store various food preparation items. Honey, olive oil, soy sauce, or corn syrup can all make your counter sticky. Store these on a tray so the mess stays contained. A tray also makes for easier cleaning than a whole section of counter.
- Set this tray on whatever part of the counter you are most likely to prepare foods that would need these items.
Place utensils in a container by the stove.Grab an old coffee can or an elegant ceramic container. Fill it with spoons, spatulas, whisks, or any other utensils. If you use these items daily, keeping them on the counter makes it easier to access them. The container won’t take up much space and is great for organizing.
Set out a multi-tiered wire basket for snacks.You may store pieces of fruit, small bags of chips, candy, or other snacks on the counter. These take up a lot of space. Put a tiered basket on the counter to gather the assorted snack foods into one place.
- If a wire basket doesn’t fit your decor, opt for a two-level rack for ceramic trays or glass bowls. Any tiered rack uses up vertical space as opposed to sideways space on the counter.
Developing Organization Habits
Put things away when you finish with them.Your kitchen counter will become cluttered if you do not put things away after using them. Make a rule in the kitchen that everything gets put away after it’s used.
- For example, if you pour cereal, put it back in the cabinet. If you pull out three spatulas to find the right one, put them back in the draw. Make a rule that nothing gets left on the counter when it already has a designated spot.
Remove the non-kitchen items from the counter.The kitchen counter may also be a catch-all for junk mail, kids’ homework, car keys, and electronics. Clear these items off of the counter and move them where they need to go. Make a rule that if it isn’t used in the kitchen, it doesn’t get set on the counter.
- It also helps to have a basket designated for this type of stuff, so that it is at least corralled into one spot.
Clean the counter off each night.Counters become cluttered little by little. Avoid ending up with a pile on the counter by clearing it off each night. Removing one day’s worth of dishes and other assorted items is easier than cleaning off a week’s worth. Remove everything and put it where it needs to be. Then give the counter a quick wipe with a wet rag.
Video: Kitchen Organization Ideas!
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