Countertops are prime real estate in every kitchen and there’s nothing worse than cluttered counters that hinder efficiency in your own kitchen. The first step in taking back your countertops is deciding what absolutely needs to be there, and what doesn’t. Hint: keys, change, mail, and other miscellaneous items definitely don’t belong. You might find that some things you do in fact use often, but they may not necessarily need to take up counter space.
Group Items Strategically
You can look at this idea in two different ways. On one hand, you can group like items with like items, such as utensils with other utensils. Use metal or ceramic canisters to group utensils and tools in a way that makes sense for you and your processes.
You can also group like items by creating “stations” on your countertops. You might have a cutting station where you like to chop all your veggies and dice your meats. Use a magazine holder to house your cutting boards and a knife block to keep all your knives tidy.
Having a coffee station where you group your coffee maker, your mugs, and all of your coffee accouterments is another great idea. Try using a towel rack installed on the backsplash to hang your mugs from.
You could also have a bread station with a cute breadbox, where you keep all bread items stored along with salted butter and perhaps a spice or two and olive oil for dipping purposes.
If you want to step things up a bit, a fresh produce station where you keep items like bananas, apples, oranges, potatoes, onions, and the like in a pretty bowl or basket is an efficient way to organize. You could also have a linen station with a wicker basket of rolled up hand towels and dish rags on display, along with your cooking essentials like oven mitts and pot holder.
Spice stations are common too and use a lazy Susan, or try countertop “bleachers” so that you can easily see each of your different spices.
Remove (or Hide) Unnecessary or Rarely Used Items
Some things simply don’t need to be on your countertop. Maybe that’s because you never use them or maybe it’s because you only use them on special occasions. Either way, if they aren’t used daily or even weekly, they probably don’t deserve prime real estate. You could also try installing and utilizing an appliance garage to hide larger items that you don’t use very often.
This creates the illusion of less clutter, even if it’s not actually true. On the flip side, make sure you keep appliances and tools out and readily available near your prime cooking area if you use them often. You can store pans and utensils within easy reach so that when you’re cooking, nothing breaks your flow.
Choose Decorative Storage Items
Different sized glass jars can be used on your countertops to hold a variety of things. Or you can use pretty ceramic pots and achieve a similar effect. Keep a decorative bowl that can perform double-duty as a trash can while you’re cooking, to avoid unnecessary trips back and forth to the garbage can.
If you use a lot of fresh herbs, consider installing a miniature herb garden on your countertop near the stove, perhaps near a chopping station. You can then just reach and grab while you’re cooking with no interruption to your process.
Make Your Sink a Station Too
Mini-ledges in your sink and helpful items like a wash pan, a drying rack, and even a cutting board can be installed. Everything right there, exactly where you need it. Who says sinks are only for washing dishes?
If aesthetics are important to you, place a cute cake stand next to your kitchen sink to house items like a basket with your hand towels and rags, dish soap and hand soap, and even your sponge. Try using a notebook clip to prop it upright so it dries out faster. You can also install storage cups on the inside of your sink cabinet doors and use those to store extra sponges and your scrub brush.
Utilize Wall Space
Whether that means installing a few extra shelves or adding hooks to hang things from, there is often a lot of under-utilized wall space in the average kitchen. Hanging things like pots and pans, utensils, and other cooking tools can free up valuable space on your countertop and reduce clutter. Try to hang items in a way that makes sense. For instance, hang pots and pans near the stove. Hang coffee mugs near your coffee maker. Hang different tools and utensils near the areas they will be used most.
Ultimately, kitchen countertop storage ideas run the gamut and depend entirely on personal tastes, cooking processes, budget, and decor. You have to decide what works best for you and yours.
We created Prepdeck to help people make better use of the space in their kitchen, prepare even better meals, and enjoy cooking more. Prepdeck offers a unique solution to kitchen clutter as it consolidates your tools and gives you a more productive cooking workspace.
Learn more about Prepdeck and all the included features that help you organize your kitchen.