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11 Things You Need To Get Rid Of In Your Kitchen

Having a functional kitchen is too important to let clutter go unchecked. If you've been struggling with kitchen clutter, this list is a great place to start!

The time you spend cooking or baking in your kitchen should at least be pleasant, if not enjoyable. But cluttered countertops, jammed drawers, and a total lack of available storage space can make it anything but!

If you’ve been struggling with any or all of these symptoms of clutter in your own kitchen, then you’ve come to the right place! 🙂 Because today I’m sharing a list of 11 things to get rid of in your kitchen in order to cut down on clutter.

Even if you kitchen is so cluttered and chaotic that it sometimes feels like a lost cause, I’d encourage you to start by tackling all the items on this list. Addressing just these items will go a surprisingly long way, and will motivate you to continue on in your journey toward a kitchen you love spending time in!

11 Things You Should Get Rid Of In Your Kitchen

1. Duplicates

I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of buying a new kitchen tool to replace one that was broken or dysfunctional, only to forget to actually get rid of the old one. Having two of something can be useful in certain cases, but for things like can openers or potato mashers, you really only need one.

Go through your drawers and cupboards and pull out any duplicates you can find. Then keep the one that works better, and get rid of the other one!

2. Takeout Freebies

When you get takeout or order delivery, the food is usually packed with extras like chopsticks, seasoning packets, sauce packets, and utensil bundles. Many people hang on to these freebies because it feels wasteful to throw them away, but at a certain point, that stuff is just contributing to clutter!

Get rid of the freebies you don’t actually use, and put that extra space to good use. If you do actually use them, cut your collection down to reasonable size to save space.

3. Mismatched Food Containers

Keeping food storage containers organized is hard enough without dealing with a bunch of containers without lids (or vice versa) too! Performing an inventory of your food storage containers is a great starting point for streamlining your collection.

First, go through all your lids and containers and get rid of anything that’s broken, warped, or otherwise damaged. After that, go through and match each lid to a container. If you end up with any lids or containers that aren’t part of a matched set, get rid of those too.

4. Fridge Clutter

Fridge magnets can be a fun and functional way to dress up the front of your fridge, but they can also make your kitchen look messier than it actually is. Get rid of any fridge magnets, wedding invitations, business cards, and anything else from your fridge you don’t need or want, then rearrange what’s left into a more organized display.

For magnet collectors who can’t bear to part with their collections, consider displaying them on a rotating schedule. Choose a reasonable number of your magnets to keep on the fridge, and store the rest in a cupboard or in another room. Switch them out for a new selection of magnets once a month or so to continue enjoying your collection without cluttering up your fridge!

5. Expired Foods

If your pantry always seems to be cluttered, you may be able to clear up a considerable amount of space simply by getting rid of anything that’s expired. Once you’re done going through your pantry, you’ll know that everything in there is still fresh, and you’ll have more storage space to work with!

6. Neglected Gadgets

Ever bought a kitchen gadget that you thought was going to be a game-changer, only to realize it wasn’t actually that helpful? It doesn’t make sense to continue storing gadgets you know you’ll never use, so toss your neglected gadgets in a donation box, or look for a willing buyer online.

7. Chipped Dishes

If you have any chipped ceramic cups or plates, now may be a good time to part with them. And it isn’t just about presentation or aesthetics—chips expose the ceramic’s porous interior, inviting germs and bacteria to make themselves at home in your dishes.

8. Old Sponges

According to the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, one minute in your microwave is enough to kill 99.9% of bacteria present on your kitchen sponge. But even with regular cleanings, the average kitchen sponge isn’t built to last forever!

If you have any old or smelly kitchen sponges hiding somewhere, replace them with fresh ones.

9. Unread Cookbooks

Sometimes the beautiful photographs and mouth-watering recipes in a cookbook are enough for us to convince ourselves that we’ll actually use it. But lo and behold, it’s still sitting untouched in the kitchen a year later.

Reclaim the space that your unused cookbooks are taking up in your kitchen, then sell or donate them so someone else can enjoy them.

10. Water Bottles

Between the impulse buys, the freebies from conferences, and the ones you bought to replace the other ones you thought were missing, it’s easy for a collection of reusable water bottles to get out of hand! A good rule of thumb is to keep one water bottle per person living in your house, plus one or two extra. Wash the rest, then donate or recycle them.

11. Reusable Shopping Bags

Don’t get me wrong—reusable shopping bags are great and I use them all the time! But if you keep every free tote you’re ever given at work, conferences, or elsewhere, it’s highly likely you have way more of them than you’ll ever actually need!

So gather all your shopping bags and totes together, then choose 10 of the best ones to keep and get rid of the rest. And store your shopping bags either by the garage door or in the trunk of your car, so you’ll be more likely to remember to use them!

Need Help With Clutter In Another Room?

What are usually the main sources of clutter in your kitchen?


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    Hi, I’m Jillee!

    I believe we should all love the place we call home and the life we live there. Since 2011, I’ve been dedicated to making One Good Thing by Jillee a reliable and trustworthy resource for modern homemakers navigating the everyday challenges of running a household. Join me as I share homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make life easier so you can enjoy it more!

    Every day I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

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