How to Organize Kitchen Cabinets

Hey guys!  I am back from an amazing few days in Salt Lake City for SNAP and ready to get back to some blogging around here!

If you follow me on Instagram, I’m sure you know that we just finished a kitchen remodel {you can see our kitchen before shots here}. I promise that I will have lots of after photos for you, but today we are going to be starting on the inside with some tips on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Ready to get going?

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!

Step 1 – Purge

The kitchen can be a hard place to organize – there is just SO much stuff and we all love our kitchen gadgets!  I have been through the kitchen a few times and thought that I actually had things quite organized.  Once I actually pulled everything out of the cabinets though, I realized how much stuff I still had that I really didn’t need.  

You can go through the cupboards one at a time to save on time and mess; however, if you have a lot to organize, I would recommend taking everything out of the kitchen cabinets and starting from scratch.  This really allows you to see how much stuff you have and gives you a good opportunity to re-arrange what you are putting back into each cabinet.  {WARNING:  This may have taken me over a week to actually get everything back into the kitchen so give yourself some time!}

Now I know that it can sometimes be hard to get rid of things, but you really do need to be ruthless when you purge.  Obviously, anything that is broken or you no longer love or use needs to go.  As a rough rule of thumb, donate or sell non-seasonal items that have not been used in the past 6 months or seasonal items that were not used during the past season.  For items that you use only once or twice per year, think if you could just borrow a similar one from a friend or family member rather than keep it around your own home.  If you are not sure if you should keep it or not, set the item aside until the very end and see if there is even space left.  For me, seeing how nice my organized cupboards look is enough motivation to part with those so-so items that are left. ;)

Step 2 – Make things accessible

When you are organizing your cupboard space, there are a few things that you need to consider.  Unless you really want to get down and dirty, you are probably not going to be changing around your cupboard sizes.  You will need to pick cupboards that fit what you are needing to store and make sure that you are optimizing all of the space while still keeping your items easily accessible.  I try to make sure that everything in the cupboard can be removed {and put back!} by removing only one other item {or block of items} at most.  If you have to take out 4 or 5 items to take out what you want, chances are that you are either not going to use it or that it will not get put back properly.

Place items that you rarely use on higher shelves or towards the back of cupboards so that frequently used items can be grabbed easily. For smaller items on top shelves, I love these fold down units. {I purchased mine at Walmart}

Awesome post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!
If you have kiddos, you might also want to have a kids’ cupboard so that they can easily reach all of their own kitchen items.  Ours holds the kids’ plastic dishes, bowls, cups, lunch bags, and lunch containers.

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of great ideas!
Using slide out bins or drawers also helps to be able to reach items in the back and keeps smaller items contained.  This was an old drawer that I had been using underneath our kitchen sink but was too tall once the new {deeper!} sink was installed.

Step 3 – Arrange items by Zones

Try to group all similar items together and closest to the area that you will be using them.  Keep dishes, glasses, and silverware close to the dishwasher for a quick and easy put away.

Awesome post on how to organize your kitchen cabinets!
Group cooking items and baking items together and keep these located close to the stove.  I have all of our cooking items {other than the larger kitchen appliances}  located in the cupboards on either side of the stove and most of the cookbooks stored in the cabinet overhead.

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of tips!

Awesome post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.
I used removeable Command hooks to hold some file folders from Staples to the inside of the cupboard doors above the stove to hold loose recipes that I want to try.  If you are short on space, the inside of cabinets is a great way to gain a little extra storage!

My favorite little zone is the tea zone by the breakfast bar.  I don’t actually like drinking coffee but love steamed and frothed milk and various teas.  This cupboard space was freed up following my kitchen purge and gave me room to create a little fun area of my own.

Great post on how to organize your kitchen cabinets!

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!
All of our different teas are stored in these cute jars from Michaels and then placed in a bin for easy access.

Great tips on how to organize your kitchen cabinets!

Great post on how to organize your kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!

Step 4 – Come up with ways to use poorly designed spaces

I think that it is safe to say that most of us have at least one space in the kitchen that just seems like useless space.  The side cupboard in our corner cupboard unit is such an awkward size for storage and its location makes it difficult to reach items.  Using the plastic corner bins that are designed for showers, I turned it into a medicine cabinet so that we just need to pull out the bin to find what we are looking for.

Great ideas for how to organize kitchen cabinets!

For small or uncommon drawer sizes, you can purchase interchangeable drawer dividers to organize smaller items.  This one was purchased at Bed, Bath, and Beyond and I know Ikea has similar options.

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of tips!

In order to utilize all of the vertical space in our cabinets, I purchased some adjustable metal shelves last year.  When I re-arranged the cabinets this year, I realized that the shelves could actually be stacked on each other {I have no idea why I did not figure this out sooner!} which ended up doubling my storage space.

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of tips!


Step 5 – Have a junk drawer

The kitchen always seems to have a ton of miscellaneous little items that don’t really seem to fit anywhere.  We created an organized “junk drawer” for these using small office dividers and it is probably one of the most used drawers in the kitchen.  Just make sure it is useful junk! :)

Great post on how to organize kitchen cabinets.  Lots of ideas!

Hopefully, these tips will help to bring a little organization to your own kitchen!  

If you are looking for more kitchen cleaning and organizing ideas, be sure to check out this post…

Everything you need to clean and organize the kitchen!

I shared this post at The Crafted Sparrow,  Lil Luna, Design Dining and Diapers, Tidy Mom,  Tip Junkie and A Bowl Full of Lemons.



  1. Mercedes says

    I’m in the process of packing because we’re buying a house… but I’m definitely using the purge rules while doing so.

  2. says

    Oh how I need to do this!! Great post!! And I need to head to Michael’s and get a few more of the cute jars with colorful lids :)

    • says

      I purchased that a while ago but I am pretty sure I got it from either Decor Steals or Antique Farmhouse. I think they are parent companies so the same products often appear on both sites. Hope that helps!

  3. says

    I love the way you’ve organized all of your cabinets! I live in a really small apartment and it is very hard to find place for everything in the kitchen. I think I will buy some baskets and boxes. Thanks a lot for the tips!

  4. Dee says

    I love all your ideas. I was wondering where you got the cute labels? they look like they are chalkboard but I wasn’t sure. I need to do that with our meds.

  5. says

    Your cabinets look so neat and tidy! This spring I should definitely declutter and clean my kitchen cabinets because I can’t find anything in them. Thank you for the nice advices in this article!

  6. says

    All of these suggestions are so great! We’re getting ready to move into a new apartment and have a kitchen that is MUCH larger than ours now, so I’m going to be able to do some rearranging and actually have large drawers! So I’m a big fan of the drawer organizers to break up the space and make sure all the odds and ends are in check! Thanks for sharing these tips and your beautiful kitchen!

  7. says

    Great idea, I especially love that little fold down thing for the top shelf, I’m going to keep my eyes open for one or two of them. Thanks

  8. says

    Great tips! We moved into our new place last year and purged so many kitchen items we really didn’t need. I know I need to reorganized my drunk drawer and should probably do another purge. We were actually thinking about selling our kitchen aid because we realized we almost never use it! Thanks for sharing, stopping by from SITS.

    • says

      Good for you for purging! I’m sure the Kitchen Aid would be harder to get rid of but I always try to remember that it is about what I actually use not what I wished I actually used! lol!

  9. says

    I’m a sucker for organizational projects. Thanks for the ideas! I would love to have you post on my new blog hop—the Weekend Blog Hop at My Flagstaff Home ( It begins on Thursday evenings and lasts through the weekend, if you’re interested.


  10. says

    love these tips. I definitely need to address #1 this fall. I do organize in zones and love that. Thank you for sharing with Share It One More Time. Cathy

  11. says

    love these tips. I definitely need to address #1 this fall. I do organize in zones and love that. Thank you for sharing with Share It One More Time. Cathy

  12. says

    The end of the summer at hand, and now I have a little time before holiday season. I really want to reorganise my small home. Thank you for posting. I have so little time to do things. I love the 15 minute clean. I have so much to do, but starting out small then working up to finish is much more realistic for me. Thank you!

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