11 Free Ways to Organize Your Kitchen

11 Free Ways to Organize Your Kitchen--Miter Saws and Mary JanesFor most people, the kitchen is Command Central.

More than a place for prepping meals, it serves as a gathering post for family and friends alike. Whether you have a large or small space, organization is key to keeping your kitchen feeling comfortable, welcoming, and clean. Having an organized kitchen helps keep the rest of your home in order and run smoother.

The following list highlights 11 FREE ways you can organize your kitchen.

Organize Your Kitchen for FREE

Relocate Items to Where You Use Them

Take a few moments to inventory your kitchen and how your belongings are currently set about. Are your cutting boards near the knives? Coffee mugs near the coffee maker? Do you have to walk across the kitchen with those wet colanders to get to the sink, leaving a trail of water behind you? Set aside some time to make your kitchen work for you by rearranging items according to where and how you use them. Not only will your organization system make more sense but you’ll save time and energy during your daily cooking and prep activities. It’s a win-win!

Group Items by Activity

Similar to relocating items to where you use them is the idea of grouping things according to activity. I made a point to create an area in my cabinets dedicated to all things baking. From flour to cupcake liners to cookie cutters, all of my baking supplies are in the same location. Not only do I save myself time when making my favorite Nutella-stuffed cookie recipe, but I save a lot of aggravation by not having to search for items in random locations!

Utilize Wall Space

Cabinets jammed full? Drawers exploding when you open them? We’ll get to that in a second. For now, focus your efforts on moving upwards. As in up the walls. Your kitchen walls are a treasure trove of extra space that can help reign in unruly gadgets, pots & pans, fresh herbs (bonus points for gorgeous, free decor!), and a host of other items. A simple rail and hook system is an inexpensive option but you can organize your kitchen for free by simply putting nails/screws in the wall (in a straight, evenly spaced line and using anchors if necessary of course). Chances are you have at least a few errant screws and nails lying around so put them to good use!

Corral Your Tools

Small baskets, metal mesh bins, and dollar store office supply organizers can work wonders for your overstocked kitchen tool & gadget drawer(s). If you have some of these lying around the house, re-purpose them for holding all of those odd-shaped tools that make food prep so much easier. If you don’t have anything that will fit in your drawers, DIY your own drawer organizer from free paint stirrers from your local home improvement stores (just ask for a few the next time you’re in the store) or using cardboard cereal/snack boxes wrapped with cute Contact, wall, or wrapping paper.

Organize the Fridge (and Freezer!)

Each time you take out the trash, make a point to peruse the contents of your refrigerator and freezer. That moldy cheese hiding in the far back corner? It’s time to say Sayonara. The decrepit frozen chicken breasts with seven inches of freezer burn on it? Time to part ways. By keeping up with the contents of your refrigerator and freezer, you set the tone for an organized, healthy, clean kitchen.

Re purpose Containers to Create Uniformity

Those beautiful pantries you see on Pinterest? I have a secret for you–it’s not necessary to achieve that kind of uniformity or organization by purchasing expensive storage containers. You can gain the same look by re-purposing used containers (cleaned out of course). Old Mason jars, jam/jelly jars, peanut butter jars, and even plastic sugar containers with snap-on tops can be creatively reused to gain a beautifully organized and uniform pantry.

Kill the Clutter

Even if your kitchen is spotless, an abundance of clutter will do nothing to make the room feel organized. Instead of piling things behind cabinet doors, consider moving less-used items to other locations in the house. Large platters and holiday dishes are better stashed in the garage, basement, or crawlspace. Those extra wine glasses you use for parties can also be boxed up. Do a quick inventory of what your family actually uses between dishwasher loads and pare down to that number of glasses. Tame the cookbook monster by keeping only those you actually use on a regular basis. Organize your kitchen quickly by eliminating what you don’t use and enjoy the extra space gained by doing so!

Clear the Counters

Clearing the counters goes hand-in-hand with killing the clutter. If you don’t use it every. single. day., it does not deserve a centimeter of your precious counter space! Adhere to the ‘clear space, clear mind’ idea and you’re on your way to a much more organized, relaxing kitchen.

DIY a Pantry

No dedicated pantry space? No problem! That small, hardly used hall closet can easily be turned into a pantry. Or clear a space on garage shelving to store extra cans, jars, and other non-perishables. Small shelves and carts can also work wonders if you’re tight on space. With a bit of creativity, you can DIY a pantry that looks like it belongs in a magazine.

Color-Code Dishes, Glasses, and Serveware

If you have a large collection of something, consider arranging items by color. Whether you adhere to a strict, rainbow-based palette or simply put blue with blue and green with green, organizing your collections by color creates a very pleasing, coherent look. Plus, it’s fun!

Label Everything!

Markers and paint pens are glorious workhorses for when it comes time to label the contents of those DIY containers you just stocked your garage pantry space with. Script it out or even print it out (on clear stickers) if you aren’t crazy about your handwriting. While it’s nice to use all the same kind of stickers, it’s more important to use the same size and type of font if you’re going for the organized, uniform look.

How do you organize your kitchen? Share your kitchen organization hacks below!




Willow is the founder of Miter Saws and Mary Janes, a lifestyle site about DIY, personal finance, travel, real estate investing, and home hacking. She chronicles her DIY, travel, and outdoor adventures and how she makes over $10,000/month online. Click here to learn how to start a blog!