How to Declutter a Kitchen
Is there a move in your future? Or are you just tired of shuffling your kitchenware around every time you want to close a cupboard? Maybe you've spent some time looking at the spotless kitchens of Instagram lifestyle gurus and have gotten inspired. In any case, you've decided that your kitchen needs to be thoroughly decluttered, and anything you don't use thrown out or given away.
But where do you start? Like with all messes, a cluttered kitchen stops being a mess when you live with it for long enough, and a pile of clutter begins to look like a fixture. Here are some places to start looking for clutter.
Takeout containers. If your takeout comes in a sturdy plastic container, do you usually keep it in hopes that you can use it for something else? If so, you probably accumulate more of those containers than you could ever use at one time. Check for duplicates, or stick them all in the recycling if you're feeling ambitious.
The paper drawer. Most kitchens have a pile of miscellaneous papers, such as takeout menus, instruction manuals, children's drawings and shopping lists. Most of them stay there for years without being looked at, and for the most part, it's easier to find either a menu or a manual online than it is to sift through the papers. Why not toss the whole pile?
Mugs and gifts. If you're like most people, you've got a shelf full of mugs, most of which you didn't buy for yourself. You've also got a drawer of kitchen gadgets for highly specific culinary situations that someone, at some point, thought you needed. A souvenir of a particular place or person can be nice to keep around, but if you never use it, there's no reason to save it.
Cookbooks. Do you have any cookbooks that you only use for one recipe? That's not an efficient use of space; you can always photocopy the recipe, stick it in a binder and donate the book. Do you have any cookbooks that you don't use at all? That's even less efficient.
Expired food. Some foods tend to sit on a shelf for a while after purchase; spices, teas, canned soups and baking supplies are some common examples. Go through your pantry and see which of them are actually usable. If you see an expired item, throw away the contents, and recycle the container if possible.
Getting started is the hard part. Once you start getting rid of clutter, you'll find it easier to spot the extraneous things in your kitchen. Soon, you'll have a decluttered kitchen in which every door closes, cleaning is easier and you can always find what you need.