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5 Kitchen Organization Secrets for a Happier Lifestyle

Ingredients you need for your meal are missing or expired …

Snacks to satisfy that craving are non-existent …

The utensil you’re looking for has gone MIA …

If those sound like problems you’re familiar with, it’s time to organize your kitchen!

From your drawers to your cupboards, an organized kitchen leads to a happier lifestyle.

Organizing may seem like a task out of Mission Impossible, especially when you find an empty milk carton that someone put back in the fridge.

However, it’s not actually that hard to get your kitchen in order.

image - 5 Kitchen Organization Secrets for a Happier Lifestyle
5 Kitchen Organization Secrets for a Happier Lifestyle

These five kitchen organization tips will make you feel like you’ve uncovered the top-secret recipe to happiness — at least in one room!

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  1. Learn the Secret of Zoning

The buzzword in today’s organization lesson is zoning. Zoning means separating everything in a room into designated categories.

The trick to this secret is to redesign your kitchen based on ease of access. In other words, the things you use most frequently are the easiest to get to, while the things you use less are tucked away.

Everyone zones differently. How you arrange your room depends on your preferences. But, there are some general rules to follow.

How to Zone (Categorically Speaking)

When you create zones in your kitchen, you reorganize items according to their functions. Whatever you need in a specific part of the room should be kept in that area.

Cleaning Zone

Let’s start with the sink.

This is your cleaning area, so everything that you use to keep your kitchen tidy and germ-free should go in this zone.

Food Prep Zone

Adjacent to your cleaning area should be your food prep spot.

It makes sense to be near the sink when you’re preparing meals. Everything you’ll need to chop veggies, strain pasta, and season meat is stored in this zone.

Cooking Zone

The cooking zone abuts the prep area so you can cook and prep at the same time. This zone contains your microwave, stove, toaster, and other cooking appliances. You can also house your pots and pans there.

Other Zones

Non-consumables, such as silverware and dishes, are placed on the other side of the cleaning zone. This makes it easy to put your clean dishes away without having to move very far.

Dry and canned goods can go in your cupboard or pantry area. Fresh foods and anything that needs to be kept cold goes into your fridge, which can also be zoned.

It’s not an exact science, so don’t stress out if your zones are different than the ones outlined here. The zoning system is a template you can use to make your kitchen more efficient and streamlined. Do what works for you!

  1. Make the Most of Your Space With Organizers

As you’re zoning, you may find that certain cupboards or shelves could benefit from a little extra organization. Luckily, there are plenty of items out there to help you organize further.

Refrigerators are a common source of problematic disorganization. Most people think that the fridge they have is the one they are stuck with. This doesn’t have to be the case.

There are dozens of fridge organizers that can help you double your fridge space. You’re sure to find some good ones on Amazon or at your local department store.

Lazy Susans are popular for hard-to-reach cupboards and shelves. These can just be rotating flat surfaces for your glasses and other items, or they can have extra storage options.

Other common kitchen organization tools include cupboard organizers, pantry dividers, and over-the-sink shelves. These handy additions to your kitchen will help you zone and organize in no time.

  1. Use Your Available Surfaces

The kitchen is the hub of the home, so it’s a great area for central storage.

Your fridge is the perfect place to display notepads or calendars with info that everyone needs to see. Since we all head there daily, there’s no excuse to miss any important announcements!

Cubbies and mail baskets can hang on your kitchen wall as predesignated clutter-catchers. If you use these to collect your mail, make sure you have a system in place to empty it regularly, too!

The goal should be to have a place for everything so nothing ends up on your counters that shouldn’t be there.

  1. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

If you look at any organizational expert’s to-do list, you’ll find something along the lines of “downsize” or “purge” on there. That’s because it’s an essential part of the process.

As you zone and redesign your kitchen, get rid of anything you don’t use. You can donate them if they are still usable and throw them away if they aren’t.

If you have things that you don’t want to get rid of but aren’t using efficiently, put them to use. For instance, old glass jars make beautiful vases!

Analyze your pantry closely. If you haven’t cleaned it out recently, there are probably expired goods that you should toss.

Donate nonperishables that have been in your pantry for too long. Chances are, if you haven’t used them by now, you aren’t going to.

  1. Designate a Work Area

As mentioned earlier, the kitchen tends to become a gathering area for everyone in your home. So why not designate specific sections of it as work areas?

Whether you plan for it or not, you and your family will probably use this room to catch up on work or hang out and chat. By planning strategically for this type of activity, you can prevent it from becoming disorganized.

Create a charging station where everyone can plugin as they hang out. Think about commonly used accessories that your family always needs. These office supplies can be stored in a caddy with drawers or an organizer for everyone to access.

Once everyone understands the purpose of this new system, it will be easier to avoid unnecessary clutter on your counters. You’ll also avoid the stress of not knowing where something was the last put away!


Streamlined processes make life simpler. It’s nice knowing that you’ll be able to find what you need whenever you need it.

Simple and orderly systems are the keys to a happier lifestyle. With these kitchen organization secrets, you’re on your way to next-level living!

Author bio:

Prime Place UNL is an apartment community located near the University of Nebraska—Lincoln. They provide quality apartment options for students who want to live off-campus but also have a short walk to class and downtown. Pets are allowed and apartments can be furnished or unfurnished.

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