3 Rules That Help Me Keep Our Kitchen Organized Day After Day

Food & Entertainment

When it comes to the organization systems in my home, no room is more dialed in than my kitchen. This is especially important to me since I love cooking in this space and do it nearly every single day. Over time, I’ve developed a kitchen organization system that isn’t necessarily pretty but that works really well for me.

Today I’m sharing the three rules that help me keep our kitchen organization system in place.

3 Kitchen Organization Rules I Swear By

1. Everything has a dedicated place.

Every single ingredient and piece of cookware in our kitchen has a dedicated place. This includes small appliances, pots and pans, lids, food storage containers, and more. I don’t focus on perfection or making sure every single cabinet and drawer is perfectly organized—I simply make sure everything fits and goes back to its spot once I’m done using it. Things do get a bit unorganized after a couple of months (partially because I’m not the only one using this space), but it takes less than half an hour to fix. In my mind, that means this is a winning organization solution for our family. 

2. Everything is easy to find.

This rule is most noticeable in our kitchen’s large pantry cabinet. Here, I organize every ingredient we have by how I cook. Similar items stay together, such as beans and rice, noodles, cooking oils, and baking ingredients. I also store almost everything in clear containers that allow me to easily see what we have on hand (and know when it’s time to refill ingredients). These containers are my favorite! I like to cook through most of what we have in the pantry before restocking, which means every month or two I wipe down the containers, refill them, and clean out whatever has expired. 

Shop Some of My Favorite Kitchen Organization Products

Find more details on all of my favorite organization products in this post.

Kitchen Pantry Organization

3. Everything is easy to reset.

We have a baseline level of cleanliness we try to maintain in the kitchen. Even when life is chaotic, it’s very easy to get our kitchen back to a clean and organized state at the end of each day. These are the non-negotiable tasks we do every night (or most nights):

  • Load the dishes in the dishwasher.
  • Wipe down the counters.
  • Clear the island of personal items.
  • Put any items that don’t have an obvious place into a designated bowl on the counter to be sorted the next day. 

We don’t have a perfect track record of completing all of these things every single night—and that’s okay. But I know from experience that if we get at least two or three of them done, it makes a huge difference the next morning when we’re getting out the door for school dropoff. 

Kate Arends Kitchen

If you liked this kitchen organization article, read these posts next:

15 Useful Home Organization Products I Love, Starting at $8
My Fridge Organization System and How It Helps Me Cook Off the Cuff
3 Books That Help Me Better Organize My Home, Time, and Life

Editor’s Note: This article contains affiliate links. Wit & Delight uses affiliate links as a source of revenue to fund the operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. Wit & Delight stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.

BY Kate Arends - April 17, 2023

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Abigail G
April 17, 2023 11:20 am

Would you tell the story of selecting your bright blue stove? I’m so curious as it’s not an obvious choice, but I have to say I come back and look at it over and over!

April 18, 2023 10:48 am

I have an incredibly small kitchen, it’s not really big enough for everything I need to have so organization is absolutely key — this was really useful. I will have to heavily adapt some of the tips to fit my tiny area but this is brilliant!

May 13, 2023 9:49 am

I’m a big proponent of open shelving! I’ve lived in a lot of communal houses where accessibility was paramount. I’ve found that it makes me think carefully about the aesthetics our kitchenwares, as everything is out in the open and in guest’s line of site. It also makes organization a challenge and we often rely on our handy label maker (as you’ve demonstrated in your pantry shot). I’m a huge fan of bulk dry goods containers, ball/mason jars, and I found these bottles for our olive oils with nice looking pour spouts: https://crewsupplyco.com/products/pour-boy-pour-spout

Great article!

May 18, 2023 7:04 am

“Everything has a dedicated place” is a huge must in my tiny kitchen! I would also add “Everything is easy to return to its dedicated place” to this list, because if it’s not easy to put away, then it probably won’t be…

Teri L Offield
May 27, 2023 3:57 pm

The pink cabinets! I am in love. I rent but can do what I want and mine are going pink.

Paula George
June 1, 2023 6:13 pm
Reply to  Teri L Offield

I was wondering if I would like a light pink kitchen.

Jo Anne
June 3, 2023 7:28 am

I use an antique pie safe (basically a stand alone cupboard) in the dining area just outside my small kitchen for a pantry. The installation of new dishwasher required removing items under the double sinks- hey! There is a lot of space under there and nothing says it is only for cleaning supplies. I keep less used small appliances, baking dishes and large pots on shelves over the laundry appliance closet located at one end of my kitchen.

June 5, 2023 7:54 am

These rules are always true! Have to keep it tidy everyday after using.

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