More pro tips for organizing your kitchen
By Aimee Heckel
Yesterday, professional organizer Joanna Monahan shared four tips to help you organize your kitchen before Thanksgiving.
Monahan is a “liberator” (that’s Superhero Code for organizer) with Colorado-based Major Mom.
The kitchen can be one of the hardest and most important rooms to keep organized. Which is why we’re offering you a part two of even more tips. Today’s advice spans two dark zones: the fridge and pots and pans — with a special shout-out to labels.
The key to organizing your fridge, according to Monahan, is to come up with a system that makes sense to you and your family.
“The goal is for everyone to find what they want when they want it,” she says. “And by doing so, it cuts down on the budget, food prep time and the grocery bill. Things aren’t expiring and going to waste. You’re promoting healthier eating at home, not running through the drive-through instead.”
Consider designating a “leftovers area” in your fridge to store grab-and-go meals to prevent them from going to waste (rather than just putting leftovers anywhere in the fridge and them vanishing forevermore behind the milk carton).
Break down the fridge into zones, depending on how you and your family live. Monahan says she organizes her fridge by category: fruits, veggies, dairy, meats and leftovers — plus a kid snack zone on a lower shelf (repurposed from the deli tray), where kids can access mom-approved snacks.
If someone in your family has dietary concerns or restrictions, such as gluten-free or dairy-free, you may want to organize the fridge by person, Monahan says. Or if space is tight, organize by size, with tall things in the back and small in the front.
“It’s never going to look the same for everybody — and it shouldn’t,” she says.
Pots and pans
Pots and pans seem to get so easily out of order. The lids migrate and vanish.
Monahan recommends nesting your pots and pans to save space, and organizing lids with special lid organizers. Store the smaller, lesser-used pots higher in a less-prominent location, like above the microwave.
“If you realize there are things you are not utilizing very often, stop giving them equal footing and move them out of the there,” Monahan says.
She also recommends stashing baking sheets vertically, instead of stacking them under the oven.
Monahan wouldn’t be a professional organizer if she didn’t love labels. She uses sticky notes and Sharpies to mark her leftovers (when cooked and what’s inside).
Or pick up reusable, erasable labels from the Container Store, she advises. Pick up a starter kit for under $10. Save money at the Container Store with these coupons, paired with 5 percent Cash Back from ShopAtHome.com. And read more articles about saving money at the Container Store here.
Bonus: Save money on items for your kids with these coupons.
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