Ultimate Guide to Organizing Your Kitchen Without Sacrificing Style

black plastic spatula hanged on black hook

The kitchen is the heart of the home, and if it’s cluttered and disorganized, everything else is going to feel offbeat. Help the energy flow freely and save yourself some mid-meal headaches by taking control of your kitchen storage. Why not organize your pots, pans, plates, products, and spices in a way that brings you joy and a sense of calm?

Even in the smallest of apartments, if you think creatively, you can find a special home for every item. Whether you’re starting from scratch, looking for inspiration for a kitchen remodel, or trying to make a few simple, but life-changing swaps, read on for 14 ideas on how to organize your kitchen space. 

Once you have a sense of what’s overwhelming you the most, devise a game plan. “The key to successfully completing any home organizing project is to set a specific goal,” Wirick says. “Fill in this sentence: By __ date, I will __, so that I can __.” Then, consider logistical questions—like how you plan to achieve your goal and when you can start working toward it.

If you need help getting started, though, we’ve got you covered. We asked three professional organizers (including Wirick and Markland) how they’d organize every major room in your home, and their tips are definitely worth heeding.

Relative Article: 25 Brilliant Bathroom Countertop Storage Ideas to Stay Organized

open shelving kitchen organization

01 of 14

Commit to Open Shelving

Open shelving doesn’t have to be just a couple of glasses here and a few plates there—your kitchen isn’t just for show. You can pile your open shelves full of items and have it still look neat if you think of every category as its own moment. Play with heights, finishes, and shapes as you stack and pile in a way that is purposeful, but pretty. 

microwave kitchen organization

02 of 14

Tuck Away Your Appliances

Let’s just be honest: There’s nothing visually alluring about a microwave. You’re not about to live without one, but the standard countertop microwave is always going to feel more dorm room than Julia Child’s Provence kitchen.

Building a space for your microwave in your kitchen islands or cabinets will look sleek and clean, and it won’t waste counter space.

alcohol kitchen organization

03 of 14

Skip the Bar Cart

You don’t have to give up counter space for a wet bar or floor space for a bar cart to make a charming display out of your bottles. These shelves are attached to the ceiling for a minimalistic look, and the bottles act as the perfect centerpiece for the neutral room. Plus, guests will always feel invited to get comfortable and kick back. 

fridge organization

04 of 14

Buy Clear Storage for the Fridge

Let us make a promise to you—we swear that if you buy clear storage, clean out your fridge, begin taking produce out of the packaging, and place items in their respective bins, you will never go back.

You can finally see everything—no more wilting greens hiding—and if something does start leaking, you only have to clean one container instead of the entire shelf.

fridge containers

OXO Good Grips Smart Seal 12-Piece Container Set  $30.00

pantry kitchen organization

05 of 14

Recycle Boxes and Packaging Immediately

Not only will using clear containers for your pantry goods help keep food fresher and more organized, but you will also never again open a cereal box to find only crumbs.

Grab a sharpie or a label maker to help you know the difference between baking powder and baking soda without doing an awful taste test.

water bottle organization

06 of 14

Create a Home for Plastics

Glassware can make a beautiful, functional display on open shelving or in clear kitchen cabinets. We have yet to be wowed, however, by a sippy cup or Planet Fitness water bottle. You want to store your plastics away, but travel drink cups seem to be specifically manufactured to tip over inside cupboards.

Prevent the pileup by purchasing drawer organizers, and you’ll never lose a lid again.

Drawer Organizer

iDesign + The Spruce Drawer Organizer  $13.00

glass kitchen shelves

07 of 14

Opt for Clear Glass Shelving

Glass shelving gives your more storage space without blocking your light or sectioning up a kitchen to make look smaller than it actually is. Store your most-used plates and cups on the first two shelves, and use the top shelf for special occasion pieces or light-loving plants to bring in more color to the room. 

breakfast nook organization

08 of 14

Hide Linens in the Breakfast Nook

Linens, spare aprons, dish towels, the holiday cookie cutters you only need once a year—these can all live happily in storage that’s built into your breakfast nook. These below-bench cabinets are a great way to create more storage and seating at the same time.

wine rack kitchen organization

09 of 14

Install a Wine Rack

Turning one of your cabinets into a built-in wine rack is a clever swap that saves you space elsewhere in your kitchen. You can also use the space to store oils, vinegar, and other ingredients to free up cabinet space.

baskets kitchen organization

10 of 14

Add Texture and Storage with Rattan Baskets

If you try to avoid plastics at all costs in your home, rattan baskets in various sizes can be helpful for storing all kinds of items. Just don’t fill them to the top to give your kitchen a more neat and seamless look. 

rattan basket

Anthropologie Kansas Basket $48.00

brass pot rail

11 of 14

Hang and Display Your Pots

Pots and pans are the absolute worst to store, so think like a professional chef and hang them for easy access. This brass rail and copper pan setup are as practical as it is beautiful, and it’s a great way to organize your kitchen while nailing the French kitchen look.

brass kitchen rail

Proper Copper Design Brass Pot and Pan Rail 

rolling cart organization

12 of 14

Add a Rolling Cart

Countertop space can be less than generous in apartments, but you can add more surface to work on and a place to store odds and ends by bringing in a rolling cart or small kitchen island.

Get a cart with wheels if it’s a really tight squeeze in your kitchen. That way, you can move it around at will while cleaning or if you have guests playing sous chef.

kitchen cart

Crate & Barrel Belmont Mint Kitchen Island

kitchen drawers organization

13 of 14

Section Up Your Servingware

Having a special home for every piece of serving ware makes unloading the dishwasher so much easier and will prevent future fights about where the charger plates actually belong. This wooden peg system keeps things neat and orderly without requiring that you purchase any new plastic containers.

plates kitchen organization

14 of 14

Build in Your Plate Storage

Most of us don’t have much use for a china cabinet these days, but built-in vertical storage for our plates would definitely spark joy.

You can break up the boxiness of a big kitchen by creating one section of open shelving and storage.

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