7 Habits for a Clutter-Free Kitchen

posted by Aby Garvey on March 6, 2014 4 Comments

Being organized is a combination of getting organized (completing organizing projects) and developing the habits that allow you to keep your spaces organized and clutter free going forward.

When it comes to reaping the benefits of your organizing efforts, it can be argued that no space will pay you back more than the kitchen. The kitchen is a space we use multiple times every single day. So when your kitchen is organized, it makes every day a dash easier and pinch sweeter.

So what habits do you need to develop to keep your kitchen organized? Here are seven to try on for size.

7 simple habits to keep the kitchen organized and clutter-free

1. Do the dishes after every single meal. It’s quicker and easier, and nothing makes a kitchen feel messy like a stack of unwashed dishes.

2. Sort, handle and file the mail and other papers each day, instead of letting them pile up on the kitchen counter.

3. Wipe down the kitchen counters at least once a day. Not only will your kitchen be cleaner, but the act of wiping down the counter will ensure daily clutter is dealt with before it begins to get out of hand.

4. Unload the dishwasher as soon as it’s done. This makes it easy to keep dirty dishes from stacking up on the counters and in the sink.

7 Habits to a Clutter Free Kitchen 

5. When cooking, clean as you go. Wipe up spills before they harden. Wash cooking utensils when you’re done using them. This will keep your work area tidy and make it a breeze to clean your kitchen after dinner.

6. Meal plan. This will help you keep your cupboards, refrigerator and freezer organized by using up food before it goes bad.

7. Shop with a list. When you use a list, you’ll avoid buying items you don’t need, keeping the food storage areas of your kitchen clutter-free.

If you need help with the first part of the equation — getting your kitchen organized — then you’ll be thrilled to learn that my Organize Your Kitchen online class is now available on-demand! This means you can start organizing your kitchen today and complete the project at your own pace on your own time schedule. Go here to learn more and get started today!

What strategies do you use to keep your kitchen organized? Thanks for sharing your ideas in the comments.

Happy organizing!


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Aby Garvey is a creative organizing expert and simplify 101’s founder. She has created 14 online organizing classes, which she has been teaching since 2007, helping thousands of people around the world get organized. Aby loves to help people create positive change in their lives through her online classes and coaching program

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  • March 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    1) Get a label maker and label some glass jars for salt, flour, and so on. Then buy in bulk cheaply and transfer to your glass jars.
    2) Get Ikea stackable boxes for your recycling (they have ones with an openable flap on the lid that is accessible even when stacked) – print labels for the lids saying what to put in each one. If you get a big box and a smaller one, just swap the lids around if you need a bigger box one week.
    3) When you bake something like bread, get a bunch of large ziplock bags (big enough to fit a loaf in). Make up 5 batches of the dry mix (not the yeast), one in each bag. When you need bread, just add water, oil and the yeast and cook. Keep the bag. Then when the bread is cooled, put it in the bag and it will get a nice floury crust.
    4) Write instructions for cooking things like oatmeal, rice and so on, on the glass jar or tupperware box they are stored in. Include the typical amount you cook, cooking times, and any other instructions. Then you won’t need a recipe book or cook too much.

    March 7, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    Great tips! Thank you for sharing them!!

    • March 6, 2014 at 6:57 pm

      I’m ruthless about keeping only the tools I use regularly, using tools with many functions where possible, and putting them away as soon as I’m done with them. Huge difference when they aren’t cluttering up the countertop; it makes the cooking mess less daunting.

      March 7, 2014 at 2:21 pm

      Thanks, Amy! Sometimes those tools designed to simplify life in the kitchen can begin to complicate things if they start to take over drawers, etc. Great point to be really intentional about which ones to keep around!