Where to Put Things in Kitchen Cabinets | How to Organize Your Kitchen

This post is all about mastering the organization of kitchen cabinets, offering practical tips and strategies to transform your kitchen’s efficiency and flow.

efficient kitchen

Have you ever wondered where to place items in your kitchen cabinets?
Perhaps you’re uncertain about how to maintain an organized kitchen or the best locations for all your items.
A kitchen ought to be one of the most orderly spaces in a home, given its crucial role in meal preparation for a family. It also serves as the hub for many household activities, making it essential to organize your kitchen efficiently before it becomes overwhelmed by clutter.

This post is all about how to effectively organize your kitchen cabinets.

First Things First: Identify Your Kitchen Work Triangle

kitchen zones organization

The area within the work triangle will likely be the most utilized section of your kitchen. The kitchen work triangle is a principle aimed at creating efficient and visually appealing kitchen layouts. This triangle connects three key points: the sink, stove, and refrigerator.

Begin by pinpointing these three components and envision lines forming a triangle between them. Refer to the image provided for clarity.

In cases of galley kitchens or layouts where the stove, sink, and fridge are adjacent, maximizing space through additional wall storage and work surfaces becomes essential.

kitchen work triangle

Identify the 7 Most Common Zones in Your Kitchen

After establishing your workspace with the kitchen triangle, the next step is to divide your kitchen into 7 zones:

  1. Everyday Dishes and Utensils
  2. Tools for Preparing Meals
  3. Baking Supplies (non-food items)
  4. Tools for Cooking
  5. Serving and Entertaining Items
  6. Food Storage
  7. Cleaning Supplies

Using sticky notes to label these zones as you organize your cabinets can aid in maintaining order and ensuring a smooth workflow.

kitchen zones organization
kitchen zones organization

Zone 1: Everyday Dishes and Utensils

Position your daily use dishes and utensils to the right of the dishwasher or above it. If a dishwasher is not present, opt for placement near the sink. This facilitates the ease and practicality of unloading.

Placement for everyday dishes and utensils:


Location: Near or to the right of the dishwasher or sink


Items: Plates, bowls, silverware, glasses, mugs

best way to organize kitchen cabinets

Zone 2: Tools for Cooking

Place cooking tools close to the stove, ideally in an adjacent drawer. For right-handed individuals, use the right-side drawer; for left-handed people, the left-side drawer is preferable. In small kitchens with limited drawer space, consider a pot rack.

Placement for cooking tools:


Location: Near or to the right of the stove


Items: Pots, pans, stirring spoons, spatulas

Zone 3: Baking Supplies (non-food)

Store baking essentials close to the oven, as it is the primary tool for bakers. Baking supplies placement:

Placement for baking supplies:


Location: Near the oven


Items: Baking sheets, muffin tins, pie plates, cooling racks



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kitchen organization

Zone 4: Tools for Preparing Meals

The meal preparation process encompasses three stages:

1. Meal prep
2. Cooking
3. Serving

Locate prep tools in the largest area within your work triangle to have all necessary items at hand.

Prep tools placement:


Location: Near the largest work surface within the work triangle


Items: Mixing bowls, measuring cups, whisks, meal prep tools

Zone 5: Serving and Entertaining Items:

These items, used less frequently, should be stored away from the main work triangle but close to the dining area.

Placement for serving and entertaining:


Location: Near the dining area


Items: Serving platters, pitchers, cake stands, holiday-themed items, chip & dip trays

Zone 6: Food Storage

Store items for leftover storage or lunch preparation near the refrigerator for convenience.

Food storage placement:


Location: Near the refrigerator, away from household cleaners


Items: Tupperware, ziplock bags, aluminum foil, plastic wrap

Zone 7: Cleaning Supplies

Cleaning items are typically stored under the sink due to proximity to water and to keep them separate from cooking and food storage areas.

Cleaning supplies placement:


Location: Usually under the sink and in nearby cabinets


Items: Towels, rags, sponges, cleaning solutions

This post provided insights on where to place items in kitchen cabinets, aiming to enhance your kitchen’s organization and functionality.

By applying these practical tips and strategies, you can create a more efficient and enjoyable cooking and living space in the heart of your home.

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