From orderly spice cabinets to genius corner drawers, these organization hacks are the home cook’s dream.

By Kelsey Ogletree
February 04, 2019
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For many families, the kitchen is the heart of the home—where meals are prepared and shared, homework done, quality time spent and memories made. If you’re spending hours in this room each day, it makes sense that you want it to be as beautiful and functional as possible. That’s where clever organization tricks come in. When you’re short on time, messy cabinets, drawers and pantries only make the experience of cooking a meal or preparing lunches feel more frantic. We took to Instagram to find the most brilliant kitchen organization hacks that don’t require a lot of time or budget, but that can make a major impact come dinnertime.

Kitchen organization idea #1: Color code

Once you go all ROY G BIV on your pantry, you’ll never revert to your old ways. Not only does this look pretty, but it makes it easier for your whole family to find the snack they’re looking for, when everything is organized in clear plastic bins by color.

Kitchen storage idea #2: Make a baking station

Skip the canisters for baking ingredients, which only take up valuable counter space. Instead, designate a low, deep drawer and purchase resealable plastic containers to fit perfectly inside—larger ones for flour and sugar, and smaller ones for brown sugar, powdered sugar and other ingredients.

Kitchen storage idea #3: Create a space for packing lunches

If you have school-age children, a double-decker drawer like this one makes a perfect station for packing lunches. Stock the top one with shallow plastic containers to hold items like granola bars and other healthy snacks, and store non-perishable sandwich fixings (like bread and peanut butter), along with lunch bags, in the lower drawer.

Kitchen organization idea #4: Install corner drawers

OK, so this idea will require a bit more budget and planning than the others. But you’ll be the envy of the neighborhood with this oh-so-clever idea for corner drawers that maximize storage space in an awkward area.

Kitchen storage idea #5: Use back-of-door space

Adding a simple white over-the-door rack ($22, homedepot.com) to the back of the pantry door expanded space in this walk-in pantry. It’s an ideal spot to store items like cereal in clear plastic containers that fit perfectly in the rack.

Kitchen organization idea #6: Create a coffee cabinet

Not all kitchen cabinets should be organized equally—you should create a system that works for your lifestyle. If you’re a daily on-the-go coffee drinker, how smart is this idea for storing tumblers in a pullout drawer beneath the coffee maker?

Kitchen organization idea #7: Have a kids’ drawer

Teach your kids about independence and organization by storing their plates, utensils, water bottles, and more in a low drawer. It’s a great way to teach them how each item has its place, and you can ask for their help in putting items away after washing.

Kitchen organization idea #8: Use pantry risers

The handy little tools known as pantry risers ($13, amazon.com) look like bleachers at a football game—and they’re super helpful for staggering canned goods so you can see what you have, from back to front, without digging through the pantry.

Kitchen storage idea #9: Hide your appliances

Keeping multiple kitchen appliances out on the counter can make even a large space feel confined. If you have the room, consider storing items like your toaster oven, blender, microwave oven, and slow cooker on shelves behind a closed door.

Kitchen organization idea #10: Repackage

The key to creating cabinets that look this sleek is to remove excess packaging and decant products into different (or sometimes, smaller) containers to create a cohesive look. Using clear, labeled jars (from $4, containerstore.com) for items like spices, coffee and oils creates a streamlined look and makes it easy to see when you’re running low.

Kitchen storage idea #11: Re-purpose magazine holders

Purchase a few wire magazine holders ($20 each, amazon.com) to hold produce like potatoes and onions that don’t require refrigeration. It’s a much sleeker look than piling them in bowls on the counter or tossing produce bags into your pantry. As a bonus, if you can easily see them, you’re more likely to use them.

Kitchen organization idea #12: Go diaganol with dividers

Why haven’t we thought of this before? Installing wooden dividers ($25, bedbathandbeyond.com) at an angle, rather than vertically, in drawers allows you to maximize the space and also include longer items that might not fit otherwise, like rolling pins or large whisks.

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