Kitchen organization is the most key ingredient in any recipe. Having a space that works with you and not against you can help to save time and make your cooking experience less stressful. This will be the first of multiple blogs about how to make your kitchen easier to navigate while cooking.
The first step is to tackle your cabinets. Clear your calendar for an afternoon and get an inventory of what you have. Pull everything out of the cabinets and drawers, get rid of anything broken or unusable. Group like items together such as pots and pans, baking dishes, measuring cups and spoons, cutting boards, knives, miscellaneous tools, etc. Check all of your plastic food containers and make sure they have the appropriate lids. Keep items that you use frequently within immediate reach and put those rarely used items up and away.
Get creative! Use small hooks or clear glass containers to house various utensils on your countertop or walls. Use baskets, drawer dividers, or lid organizers to make everything visible and accessible. Consider a knife magnet on the wall (high and out of reach of children, of course.)
Here is an awesome resource for organizing your kitchen, 10 minutes at a time.
Use this checklist to make sure you have all of the crucial cooking tools:
Saucepans of various sizes with lids
Stock pot with lid
Oven safe skillet, cast iron skillets are great
Non-stick skillet for eggs (never use metal utensils on non-stick, it will scratch off hazardous materials into your food)
Colander or strainer
2 baking sheets
Measuring spoons - ¼ teaspoon, ½ teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon
Measuring cups - stackable for dry ingredients and a large cup with a spout for wet ingredients
High temp rubber spatula
Flat spatula for flipping
Ladle, large serving spoon, and slotted spoon
Microplane or zester
Knives - chef’s knife, serrated knife, paring knife
Blender or food processor (see previous blog for advice)
Instant read thermometer