Organize Your Kitchen Drawers Like a Pro with These Simple Tips

Is your utensil drawer a jumbled mess of spatulas, serving spoons, and who knows what else? Are you wasting precious minutes rummaging around to find the right lid for your food storage container? Unorganized kitchen drawers can slow down meal prep and cause frustration. But with some simple tips, you can organize your kitchen drawers like a pro!

You’ll learn how to group like items together, make the most of vertical space, and design smart systems for all your cooking tools and accessories. With these pro tips, you’ll be able to find anything you need in seconds, saving yourself time and headache anytime you need to cook. Let’s get started!

Take Stock of Your Kitchen Drawers’ Contents

First, take everything out of the drawer(s) you want to organize and lay the contents out on a table or countertop. It may seem like a lot at first, but this step is crucial to see exactly what you’re working with. As you take stock, group like items, such as:

  • Cooking utensils – spatulas, wooden spoons, whisks
  • Baking tools – measuring cups and spoons, rolling pin
  • Gadgets – garlic press, can opener, bottle opener
  • Food storage containers and lids
  • Cutlery – forks, knives, steak knives
  • Linens – napkins, placemats, dishtowels

Get a feel for which items you use most frequently while cooking. Also take note of problem areas, like collections of extra tiny items that have sunk to the back or large awkward items that don’t fit well. Knowing exactly what’s in your drawers allows for smarter organization.

Set Aside Clutter for Donation or Trash

As you sort through the drawer contents, be ruthless about decluttering items you simply don’t need. Pitch expired food items, chipped dishes, worn-out linens, and cooking tools that are past their prime. For still-usable items you just don’t need, set them aside to donate to charity. Removing unnecessary clutter leaves more room to neatly organize what you actually use.

Invest in Drawer Organizers

Drawer organizers are your new best friend when it comes to creating order. They allow you to neatly separate utensils, gadgets, and other items into their own designated spaces. Here are some of the most useful types of drawer organizers:

  • Compartment organizers: These have built-in dividers to create custom compartments for separating categories of items.
  • Cutlery trays: Designed to neatly hold utensils, cutlery trays often have dedicated slots for knives, forks, and spoons.
  • Utensil dividers: Slip these movable dividers into your drawer to create customizable slots.
  • Knife blocks: In-drawer knife blocks safely store blades instead of leaving them loose.

When shopping for drawer organizers, consider your most troublesome items. For example, extra long spatulas may warrant a deeper compartment organizer. You can mix and match organizers as needed for each drawer.

Maximize Your Organizers’ Potential

To make the most of your organizers, follow these best practices:

ideas for organizing kitchen drawers
  • Stand utensils and gadgets upright in divided compartments.
  • Use drawer height by storing items in horizontal rows.
  • Label organizers and compartments for easy identification.
  • Opt for clear organizers to easily see contents.

Designate Drawers by Usage

Now that you’ve armed yourself with organizers, it’s time to think about the purpose for each drawer. Consider designating drawers for these common kitchen storage needs:

Cooking Tools & Utensils

Store your most-used cooking tools and utensils in a drawer near the stove for easy access while cooking. Use compartment organizers, divided trays, or utensil cylinders to neatly store spatulas, wooden spoons, whisks, tongs, and ladles.

Baking Essentials

Designate a drawer near your baking station for all your mixing bowls, measuring cups and spoons, rolling pin, and other baking tools. An upright utensil organizer is perfect for corralling all the smaller items.

Food Storage Containers

Corral lids and containers in a drawer near your food prep zone or pantry. Matching containers to lids is easier if stored together. An adjustable compartment organizer makes quick work of organizing the containers.

Table Linens & Napkins

Keep table linens, cloth napkins, placemats, and napkin rings organized together in a drawer near your dining area for quick setting. Fold linens neatly and store multiple sets together with dividers.

Cutlery & Flatware

Utilize the full depth of a drawer to store cutlery in an organized fashion. Invest in a dedicated cutlery divider or tray to keep utensils separated and avoid scratches. Store extra serving utensils here as well.

Group Like Items

An easy way to impose order is by storing like items together – this makes everything easier to find. Some ideas for grouping:

  • Wrap cutlery bundles in cloth napkins.
  • Store drinkware together – mugs, whiskey glasses, wine glasses.
  • Corral small gadgets like garlic press and bottle opener.
  • Keep all grill tools or barbecue supplies together.

You can use small bins, baskets or trays to neatly group items. Labelling the containers helps identify the contents at a glance.

Stand Items Upright

Another smart storage technique is to store gadgets and tools vertically rather than stacked horizontally. Items like spatulas, tongs, and ladles fit better standing on end. Use a divided organizer tray or compartment bin.

Maximize Vertical Space

Drawers tend to have more vertical space than horizontal real estate. So make the most of the height by stacking where possible. Some ideas:

  • Use a multi-tiered cutlery tray.
  • Store canned goods upright with a divider.
  • Stack bins or baskets.
  • Use risers or racks to add extra tiers.

This utilizes all the available space better than limiting yourself to one crowded layer.

Optimize Deep Drawers

For deep drawers, pull items forward where possible so you don’t lose things in the abyss. A drawer insert or risers can add a secondary level closer to the top. Or place everyday-use items up front and reserve the deep back for overflow or infrequent use.

Get Smart About Knife Storage

Storing knives calls for extra care. Loose knives can dull and damage other utensils. Here are savvy storage solutions:

  • In-drawer knife blocks safely corral blades.
  • Knife tray inserts cushion against dings.
  • Sheaths on knives keep edges protected.
  • Hang a magnetic knife strip inside a cabinet.

Store sharp knives separate from other cooking tools for safety, but keep them handy to prep zones for ease of use.

Avoid Cluttering Your Knife Drawer

Only store cooking knives in your designated cutlery drawer. Non-kitchen knives like craft blades or pocket knives can live elsewhere to prevent clutter.

Get a Handle on Little Items

Small loose items like spice packets, rubber bands, batteries and take-out menus can quickly clutter up a drawer. Contain these with any of the following solutions:

  • Store in clear, lidded jars labelled by category.
  • Divide into compartments or trays.
  • Utilize vertical space with tiered organizers.
  • File away manuals and paperwork into magazine files or binders.

Don’t Forget Your Junk Drawer!

Even the junk drawer filled with randomness deserves some organization. Assign a shallow drawer and use compartments to divide items into categories like tech accessories, office supplies, household items, etc.

Maintain with Regular Purging

Organization is an ongoing process. Maintain your tidy drawers with these habits:

  • Edit contents seasonally when switching out gadgets and tools.
  • Donate unused items so clutter doesn’t reappear.
  • Combine and consolidate linens and storage containers as needed.
  • Periodically re-evaluate your organization schemes and make changes as needs evolve.

Keep It Neat

When cooking, take those extra seconds to put items back neatly into their assigned spots instead of tossing them randomly into the drawer. This keeps the system working efficiently.

You can whip your drawers into shape with some clever organization tricks. Designate drawers by purpose and group like items together. And don’t forget those finishing touches like labels. Investing a little time upfront means smoother sailing in the kitchen every day after. You’ll be able to find any utensil in seconds, saving you precious minutes when cooking meals. So implement these simple tips and organize your kitchen drawers like a pro!

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