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Four Tips to Organize Your Kitchen

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The kitchen is probably the most used room in many homes, but that also makes it prone to being the messiest. Unlike a messy bedroom, a messy kitchen is typically a social space that others could see. Trying to prepare a meal in a space that is not well organized can be stressful and inefficient.

A clean, organized, efficient eating and cooking space can save you time and stress, while making a better impression on visitors. Here are four tips to keeping the heart of your home clean and well-organized.

1. De-Clutter

No matter how small or large your kitchen is, you want to keep the cabinets, drawers and counter space as uncluttered as possible. Most kitchens have a number of cabinets and shelves that are harder to get to than others. Keep the items that you use the most on lower shelves and closest at hand, and put the items that are used the least to top shelves and in the back of cabinets. You can also store items you rarely use in a garage, basement, pantry, hutch, or hall closet. If you don't use it regularly, get it out of the kitchen and out of the way.

2. Group similar items together

Having to search for a specific pan or utensil every time you want to cook can waste time. Pots and pans should have their own cabinet or drawer, as should implements like wooden spoons, serving spoons and spatulas. Seasonings and spices should all be kept together in one location, as should baking supplies and breakfast items. How you group your items is going to depend on what you use the most. Again, free up prime cabinet and countertops space for the items you use the most and put the things you use less often in places where they can be stored and easily accessed when they are needed.

3. Use labels

If you have a large household with numerous people who share the task of putting away groceries or unloading the dishwasher, help everyone keep the space organized by labeling locations so everyone knows where things belong. This also comes in handy when you have guests who want to help out by cooking, unloading the dishwasher or tidying up after a dinner party.

4. Maintain a healthy, hygienic environment

Also consider practicing proper hygienic when preparing food.  Raw meats can contain harmful bacteria that can easily be transferred throughout the kitchen.  Once meats are cooked to the proper temperature, the bacteria are killed off and generally do not represent a health hazard.  Washing hands with soap and water and cleaning surfaces after working uncooked meats can reduce the occurrence of harmful bacteria.  Fruits, vegetables and dairy are generally not cooked to such high temperatures, however, steps must be taken to prevent meat bacteria from contaminating your produce. Cut and prepare uncooked meat in a different area from where you cut and prep dairy and produce. Have different cutting boards dedicated to the two classes of food, including a separate cutting board for preparing fish will also help lessen the possible occurrence for cross contamination.  Finally do not use the same knife used on raw foods of both types without washing it in between.

Store meats, cheeses and leftovers in airtight wraps or containers in the refrigerator. Store dry goods in plastic or glass containers that can’t be invaded by insects or rodents. If you use containers that aren’t transparent, put labels an dates on them so you don’t forget what you have stored and when it was prepared. 

While developing a good system of organization is important for keeping cooking and eating spaces efficient and healthy, having a well-designed space in the first place is particularly helpful. Landmark 24's open concept, efficiently designed kitchens give you a great starting point for making organization and cleanliness a breeze. Contact us to learn about our communities in Savannah and Richmond Hill, Georgia, and Bluffton and Charleston, South Carolina: 912-353-1275.