Once you’ve moved into your new home, the kitchen will probably be one of the first rooms to unpack. But if you’re feeling overwhelmed about where to start, we are here to help you out with some tips and tricks on how to organize the kitchen in your new home.
The kitchen is often referred to as “the heart of the home”, and the sooner you can get your kitchen organized and unpacked the sooner you’ll begin to feel at home in your new house.
The Best Way to Organize Your Kitchen in a New Home
Before you start unpacking plates and silverware, the first thing you’ll want to do is give your new kitchen a deep clean.
Clean Your Kitchen First
Unfortunately, your new kitchen is probably looking pretty dirty.
Start by wiping down all the cabinets, shelves, and drawers. If some of the drawers are looking worn or stained, you can use contact paper to create a fresh-looking and easy to wipe surface.
After that’s done, you’ll want to focus on cleaning the appliances. Start with the fridge and freezer, then the stove, dishwasher, and microwave. Remember to clean the sink and underneath the sink as well.
If you want more kitchen cleaning tips and tricks then check out our some of our other posts.
Start Unpacking Boxes
If you didn’t label boxes with their specific contents, then this may be a little bit more difficult. But you’ll want to start unboxing your kitchen items and get a feel for what items will physically be able to fit on the shelves and drawers. This is especially important for large items.
Clean Your Kitchenware
You’ll want to clean your kitchenware after you unpack it and before you put it away.
Load the dishwasher with your silverware and plates, and start washing larger items by hand.
Once they are clean and dry, then you can finally place them in their new permanent home.
Find a Home for Cleaning Supplies
When looking for a place to keep your cleaning supplies, remember that they shouldn’t be easily accessible to children. If you decide to keep cleaning supplies underneath your kitchen sink then be sure to child proof the cabinet doors.
Visualize Yourself Cooking Your Favorite Meal
It sounds silly, but if you can imagine yourself cooking your favorite meal, then you might get a better idea of where certain items need to go in your new kitchen.
Store Items Based on Frequency of Use
Remember, the items that you use the most should be located in the easiest to reach places.
The cabinets and drawers near the sink and dishwasher are often the most convenient place for items that are used multiple times a day, like silverware, cups, and tableware.
The silverware drawer should be the largest drawer closest to the dishwasher for easy clean ups. Pots and pans and baking sheets should be located as close to the oven as possible.
Store items that aren’t used very often in higher cabinets. And remember to keep large heavy items as close to the floor as possible. They will be easier to access, and you won’t have to worry about them falling.
Kitchen Work Zones
If you’re still feeling a bit unsure of how to organize, it might help to break up your kitchen into different work zones.
There is a “kitchen work zone theory” used by home builders that divides the kitchen layout into five functional zones.
Here is how the kitchen is commonly divided:
- Consumables Zone. This is your food storage area, and can be separated into two additional smaller zones. The fresh food zone, like your refrigerator. And the dry goods zone, which is your pantry and seasonings.
- Non-consumables Zone. This area is used to store everyday dishes, including plates, bowls, glasses, and silverware. (But not your pots and pans.)
- Cleaning Zone: This area is mainly the sink and dishwasher and also includes all of your kitchen cleaning products.
- Food Prep Zone: Think of this area as the place where most of your food preparation happens. The measuring, cutting, stirring etc. This could be a countertop or it might be your kitchen island (if you have one). This would be a good place to store your mixing bowls, cutlery, and cutting boards.
- Cooking Zone: The cooking zone is where your stovetop, oven and microwave are. This is where the actual cooking and baking takes place.
Organizing your kitchen by working zones in the order listed above, will allow you to almost form an “assembly line” for meal production. Food staples get carried to the prep area for cooking. Pots and pans are close at hand. And the dishwasher is right next to the silverware and plate storage.
Store Items as Close to Their Related Zone as Possible
The reason for dividing the kitchen into these work zones is so that it’s easy to decide when things are in their functionally correct place. Which will improve your kitchen’s workflow.
Knives, cutting boards, mixing bowls, and other prep utensils should be stored in the preparation zone. Pots, pans, and bakeware should be stored as close to or near the stove or oven, in the cooking zone.
Now, not only will your kitchen be organized, it will be highly functional too.
Be mindful of where your dry foods and food storage will be kept.
Keep canned foods and dry foods in a pantry or cabinet that is easy to access, but will be a cool dry place. (Usually away from the stove.)
Organizing Spices and Vitamins
You’ll also want to decide on where to keep your spices and your vitamins.
These smaller bottles can quickly get overwhelming to organize. One of the best things to do is purchase a spice rack or organizer.
You can also check out our article “7 Clever Ways to Store Spices.”
It can be helpful to purchase containers or bottles that are all the same size, so that they are easier to organize.
I hope this list helps you get the heart of your new home as organized and efficient as possible.
After you organize the kitchen in your new home…on to all of the other rooms in the house!