26 Kitchen Organizing Tips from Real Cooks – Twitter Style

There are magazines, books and TV shows devoted entirely to the subject of organizing, but sometimes the best tip is passed along by a real person. It could be via a penciled-in note in the margin of a thrift store cookbook purchase, a helpful suggestion from grandmother, or a good friend who called you up and said “Guess what I’ve discovered!”

Twitter is a fantastic platform for exchanging information with real people. If I’m excited about a new kitchen cleaning trick or cooking shortcut, I always share my knowledge with my followers–and they do the same with me. It’s as if we’re swapping homemaking secrets at an old fashioned quilting bee, only quite a bit more modern!

I love gleaning information via Twitter because:

  • It’s up-to-the-minute. Be it the latest and greatest tip on how to make my kitchen greener or a hot new tool, Twitter tips are never stale.
  • It’s everyday people like me. Not a brand, agency or sales rep selling me an product. These kind folks are passing along pointers that have improved their life.
  • It’s quick. Who has time for a 30 minute TV-show on organizing the pantry? A few tweets can pass along exactly the information I need.
  • It’s concise. A 140-character limit does not allow for an introduction, body and conclusion to a recommendation.

SO! In the spirit of quick and straightforward communication, I asked my followers to send me their BEST kitchen organizing tip. Together we’ve compiled a varied and comprehensive list for you to peruse and make notes. These are real people, working in real kitchens, not studios, and they are sharing what simplifies things in the kitchen for them.

26 Kitchen Organizing Tips from Real Cooks – in 140 characters or less

1. @CheriNeufeld Don’t have enough cupboard space? Bring some of your more decorative dishes out of hiding and place them on shelving for everyone to enjoy.

2. @MangoTomato Don’t get a knife set! All you need is a sharp chef’s knife. No need for a garlic press; use a microplane instead (also 4 ginger)

3. @RellaBellaK Don’t buy “single-use” kitchen utensils (e.g. egg separator), only “multi-tasking” cooking implements!

4. @bakedbyrachel I picked up some cute snapware containers cheap to organize my baking cabinet. Tips, liners, colors, sprinkles etc. Nice & neat!

5. Shannon: I use mason jars (quarts and 1/2 gallon) to store dried goods. In our small kitchen they double as decorative elements.

6. @simplebites Use a dual garbage bin for instant trash/recycling sorting. This 30L Step Can ‘Duet’ from Mistral has revolutionized my kitchen waste.

7. @MommyI’mHungry Kitchen organizing tip: Store all plasticware lids in one deep drawer standing up like a file system.

8. @GuiltyKitchen Have 3 cutting boards: Plastic  for raw meat & 2 wooden, 1 for vegetables & the other is for stinky things like garlic, onions and cilantro.

9. @JanniseScott When I cook/bake I keep two bowls on the counter – one for garbage and one for compost -saves time and I don’t go back and forth.

Photo by lunchinabox
10. @rovinglemon Store similar small items–baking supplies, spice jars, etc.–together in plastic bins. Much easier to find/get what you need.

11. @Burp_Blog Buy spices in bulk – higher quality product also saves $$. Storing your herbs & spices in a drawer? Put the labels on the lids!

12. @Cheryl_Arkison Zones! A baking zone, with all tools and common ingredients in one area, dishes in another (by the dishwasher), pots by stove.

13. @ginarau My only kitchen organizing tip is to have a big pantry. I love that I can keep food, cookbooks, appliances & kids arts/crafts.

14. @mamasminutia I store food in glass quart & pint jars (as opposed to plastic). I have a large pull-out drawer just for storing empty jars.

15. @FarmDaughter My organizing tip: NO GLASS CABINET DOORS, so nobody knows what it looks like in there! 🙂

16. @dinnerwithjulie OK got one: A magnetic dry-erase board on the fridge for freezer inventory: Put it in, write it on. Take it out, wipe it off.

17. @TheNoviceChef When you buy “stock” groceries put them behind your current stash so you can make sure to use up your already opened products!

18. @colleentremont Put spices into matching clear jars & line on a mounted picture ledge. A colorful space-saver and clever kitchen design!

Photo by daisybush

19. @simplebites Think outside the box when it comes to storage containers.  Here’s an article about different ideas for kitchen storage.

20. @okwithandrea If you have a phone on your kitchen counter, free up a shelf or cupboard space just above it to keep pens, paper, stamps, etc.

21. @JanniseScott I keep a laminated recipe cheat sheet on my fridge with my most used recipes. Avoids looking up frequent recipe in book/on net.

22. @HomemadeHoleman Buy storage containers that have stackable/locking lids – with everything stored together you don’t waste your time searching!

23. @colleentremont Put spices into matching clear jars & line on a mounted picture ledge. A colorful space-saver and clever kitchen design!

24. @simplebites Space Saving Tip: Store cutting boards on top of the refrigerator or microwave for quick, yet out of the way access.

25. @thehazelbloom Use lazy susans for spices and frequently-used baking supplies. So easy to access and keep organized.

26. @FoodforMyFamily If you have deep cupboards, use containers of varying heights and place tall in the back so you can still see them from the front.

A warm thank you to everyone who sent their tweet tips! The thought has probably already crossed your mind, but this also doubles as an impressive #FollowFriday list if you’re looking for new people to follow on Twitter…

Be sure to start with following @simplebites, though! Happy Tweeting!

It’s your turn now. Share your best kitchen organizing tip – in 140 characters or less!

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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  1. Melinda Pickworth says

    Hmmm. Bijou kitchen? When my daughter went away to university I stole her cupboard space for my panagerie (vast colection of cake baking tins). Too cruel?
    .-= Melinda Pickworth’s last blog: Duivekater =-.

  2. Thank you for the multi-mentions and the introduction to some new names. What a great compilation of tips…another list for me to print off!
    .-= Jan (Family Bites)’s last blog: Turning Ten =-.

  3. Rose in Ohio says

    For me, it’s essential to resist the temptation to keep everything—plastic containers, glass jars, wine bottles, etc. Now those go into the recycle bin immediately. Storing things I don’t use regularly is a huge waste of time and space. @RoseMillsOhio

    • Great tip, Rose. Containers like the ones you mention come long all the time, so why hold onto an excess of them?

    • The Conscious Life says

      I’ve the temptation to keep jars and bottles too! Who knows when I might need one. And this one looks so presentable. Oh this will go well with the kimchi. So I ended up with so man empty jars sitting in a cupboard. Never been used. I’ve to re-look into my “jarring” kitchen organization.

  4. Install a hook for keeping your oven mitts and pot holders, so you have easy access and cute decoration (assuming you have cute looking mitts like I do). 🙂

  5. Another one: Instead of plastic wrap, use shower caps to cover bowls, loaves of bread, plates, etc. Rinse (if necessary), dry, and reuse! If the elastic wears out, use a rubberband to hold it in place.
    .-= Jennifer Jo’s last blog: My one and only =-.

    • Love it! I’ve heard of this, folks covering a green salad with a shower cap. You know I’m going to pick a few up now!

      Its appalling how much cling wrap I go through.

      • you can make those out of some fabric cut in a circle and sew fold over elastic around the edges, I actually have some that were made just for this, they look exactly like a cloth shower cap. 🙂

      • Aimee,
        I know you’ve recently moved, so this may be an idea. I use the left over gigantic roll of plastic wrap from the moving/packaging store. I especially use it when I have parties or am wrapping half sheets. Its just another way to use that movers wrap that we bought from our move-and I love it.
        .-= Melissa’s last blog: GO TEXAN Grapefruit, Honey and Lavender Cupcakes =-.

  6. I am in lust of that duet garbage/recycling can. The link takes me to a canadian website. Any idea where I can get that in the U.S.?

  7. Great info, I’m currently trying to slim down all the nonsense in my kitchen. I’m going to look over this more later after I clear more clutter. One thing I love is my Qt sized Glass mason jars, they are SO MULTIPURPOSE! They can be storage for anything, from the counters to fridge to freezer etc and if you lose a lid it’s easy to find replacements. I also save my peanut butter jars they are good storage as well as and I love the wide mouthed ones esp for refrigerating leftovers, easier to get cooked things in and out, I also love using those as drinking vessels, they are great, and just pop a lid on them and you have a to-go glass 🙂 oh and speaking of that, some of the glass salad dressing bottles make awesome to-go bottles, I love my kleen kanteens but I really love the re-purposed dressing bottles I’ve been using they are perfectly sized. 🙂

    • You’re a pro at re-purposing, Emilee!

      I have a case of quart (and 2 quart) sized mason jars somewhere. You’ve inspired me to unpack them!

      • Oh that’s sweet, I’m not quite a pro though LOL. I just hate throwing stuff away HA! Hence the first sentence in my reply HEHE!! Still though I have some good containers but some I haven’t figured out quite what to do with yet. I did repurpose my glass olive oil jars, I’m going to use those to put my own home made salad dressing (when I find a good recipe, haven’t searched for any yet) in since they are larger than normal salad bottles like the ones I mentioned above . Oh and Bionaturae makes strained tomatoes in Glass jars they are really neat size and shape and have a really wide mouth too, they would make a great drinking vessel as well, or who knows what else, they are so neat sized.

        Oh and the large yogurt tubs like from Stonyfield, make great tubs for home made Playdough. 🙂

        Oh and my aunt gave me several of those huge glass gallon? maybe pickle jars, like the ones you would see in the bulk/party section. They are great for holding flour or sugar or other bulk products, or maybe brewing some kombucha or sprouts or soaking beans?

        Ok so anyone have ideas on how I could DECORATE the LIDS to all these miscellaneous containers??? Something that I could still wash the lids and that would last a long time.

  8. Organize according to how traffic *actually* flows in the kitchen — not how you think it *should* flow.

    Also, sort hand utensils by size/length — it makes finding the correct tool much easier.

  9. I love the laminated recipe cheat sheet idea. I suppose my quick tip would be about organizing the refrigerator.

    Pick a day to clean out your fridge, review expiration dates and give it a good wipe down.
    .-= Melissa’s last blog: GO TEXAN Grapefruit, Honey and Lavender Cupcakes =-.

  10. Good idea Melissa, I always close the fridge quick so I don’t have to think about it ha! I’m going to post a note on the fridge for this! 🙂

  11. I use standing file folder holders to contain “floopy” items in my pantry – like the reusable grocrery bags, oven mits, lunch bags, etc.
    .-= Alissa’s last blog: Grace =-.

  12. I’ve just recently begun saving my glass jars/bottles. The other day I used a nice pentagon shaped bottle to give my co-worker some of the AMAZING chai-spiced granola featured here last week. She LOVED it and thought the bottle was a nice touch since she uses granola as a topping to her yogurt. I just wrote the name of the granola on the glass with a sharpie.

  13. Tricia Grable says

    Thank you so much for your organizing ideas and suggestions!
    We recently moved to a smaller home and I’m having to decide what to keep and what to either give away or just throw away! LOL
    Looking forward to hearing more from you.

  14. I love the shower cap idea!

    @Kara – I use a coat rack instead of a single hook. Then you can store tongs and bottle openers and all sorts of hangable items in one place.

    @Emilee – Yogurt containers are the best. I put all of my rice and lentils and old yogurt containers.

    @Aimee – I have a really nice set-up of #23 if you are looking for any more pictures! I recently went through my spice drawer (we cook a lot of indian food, so spices come in formless bags) and moved everything into mason drawers and arranged them on a sconced shelf in the dining room. Everyone always talks about how lovely they are!

  15. I affixed Closetmaid 2 tier shelves inside cabinet doors closest to and on either side of the stove and store my spices there. Makes it easy when i’m cooking; just open the doors and voila!

  16. Love it, Alyson. Thanks!

  17. Some times its a pain in the ass to read what people wrote but this website is
    really user pleasant!

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