With things heating up on Wall Street, they
are probably getting hot in your kitchen too.
Economic conditions are driving more
of us to cook more often. The more you are in your kitchen, the more
you probably wish for more space. The more you watch the news, the
further away a new house and larger kitchen looks.
So just what do you do with your increasing
supply of staples?
If you are like me, you’re trying to
save money both at the grocery and from not eating out. This means
you have a larger quantity of ingredients on hand than ever before.
You have also taken advantage of bulk buying or bought multiples
when a favorite product is on sale.
Make the kitchen you do have really work for you.
Take advantage of every square inch
and that means adapting those lower cabinets to function. The
typical lower cabinet has a lot of wasted space. You can’t see what
is back there and use it so it isn’t often the first choice for food
storage. It most often contains kitchen clutter.
For one growing family, I found a
solution by making use of existing cabinets in the adjacent laundry
room. The cabinets stored household essentials like light bulbs,
candles, placemats, holiday dishes, dog treats and so forth. While
they were household essentials, none of the items had to be stored
in the laundry room or even in the kitchen.
Re-purposing this space for food
storage was essential. All of the items formerly kept in the lower
cabinets were distributed throughout the house to other storage
areas - light bulbs to a shelf in the garage, placemats to a linen
closet, holiday dishes with decorations and so forth.
Foods that were grabbed all the time,
like breakfast cereal and snacks, were left in the kitchen cabinet
for easy use. Items that were only used for dinner preparation or
seldom used, like dessert items, were moved to the laundry room.
Rubbermaid’s Slide N’ Stack baskets
made this deep dark cabinet work. Each basket was labeled. For this
family, the main categories are Rice/Beans, Pastas/Noodles, Mixes,
Nuts, Beverage Mixes, Teas, Dessert Ingredients and Asian
Besides creating order, sorting into
these baskets makes grocery shopping easier. It is very simple to
see that you are low on pasta or rice by checking that basket. It is
also good for your budget. It is also easy to see, as in this case,
that you have way too much tea and don’t need to spend any more
money on that.
How to Make this Work for You
out lower cabinets. These often contain seldom used items. Ask
yourself if you really need to keep that item and if so, could
you keep it in another location. Be sure to ask yourself if you
have too many of that item. Just exactly how many skillets does
a home need?
you are like me, you don’t have a new kitchen with pull-out
lower shelves. Adapt your cabinets by adding something that will
slide out. You could use plastic totes, wicker baskets,
cardboard boxes covered in pretty paper or you could install
plastic or wire baskets on runners that are found at home
improvement stores or online. Be sure to measure each cabinet.
They may look the same but be an inch or two different!
your food items into basic categories into your bins.