One Small Push You Can Make Towards a Less Cluttered Kitchen

published Jan 28, 2019
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(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

The January Cure is all about refreshing and organizing your home for 2019. We tackle one assignment each weekday throughout the entire month. It’s not too late to sign up, and you can visit the Cure page to catch up with the assignments so far.

It doesn’t matter if you cook every day or once in a blue moon. You might have a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it kitchen, or one with more cabinets than you know what to do with. No matter what, I bet we all have one easy-to-ignore clutter problem in common: Messy pantry cabinets.

Your “pantry” might not be an actual pantry. If you stash food in a cupboard or on open shelves or out on the counter, that’s your target today. If you don’t have any area like that, try clearing the fridge or freezer instead—the instructions below will adapt nicely to any part of the kitchen.

Let’s jump in…

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Today’s Assignment: Do a pantry cleanout.

Set aside some time today to clear out wherever it is that you store food at home.

Here’s a quick breakdown of how to do the job right:

Move your trash can or a garbage bag to where you’ll be working. A bag or box for potential food donations is excellent to have on hand here as well. You may also want to keep a notepad or your phone handy for jotting down things you toss that need replacing.

Take everything out, one shelf or section at a time, and sort the items as you go. Anything expired can go in the trash (or you can compost, if that’s your thing), as well as anything that you opened and know you aren’t going to finish. Place unopened, still good items in a donation box.

Once a shelf is cleared, clean it. Attack it with a vacuum first, then your favorite cleaner.

Replace the items on the clean shelf, wiping or dusting each thing off, as needed. This is your chance to make the pantry more organized than before. Put like things together, or repurpose bins and boxes to keep smaller items in order.

Repeat the process for each shelf or section.

If you’re super motivated, you can channel that energy into cleaning out the fridge next. But if not, don’t take on any more than you can handle today. Knock it out, cross it off your list, and then allow yourself to move on.

Only a few more days to go! Tell us how your home is feeling in the final week.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Download the printable PDF calendar: January Cure 2019

Share your progress on Instagram: #thejanuarycure