5 Things In Your Kitchen Contributing To The Clutter

Everyone has gone shopping and returned with something they never actually use. Or you save something thinking you'll use it one day, but you never do. Although these are good intentions, things like this clutter our homes and make life a little more challenging. It can be frustrating to cook in a kitchen where you have to move everything out of your way to get to the one tool you need. Additionally, it can feel like you never have enough space!

To ensure your kitchen is optimized for how you live, it's best to go through it occasionally to see what you can get rid of. Clean and Scentsible suggests asking yourself questions to see if you need to keep the item or if it can go. For example, have you used the thing within the last three months? Will you use the item within the next three months? If the answer is no, you could likely get rid of it without missing it. However, don't discount things that simply bring you joy. If you hardly used that mug from your vacation four years ago but love seeing it in your cabinet, then feel free to keep it!

Cooking gear

Utensils are usually the items that clutter up the kitchen the most, and if you aren't an avid cook, you probably don't need twelve spatulas. Grab all your cooking utensils and spread them out on your countertop. Organize them by type and take a good look at how many of each you need. If you bake a lot, you might need two to three whisks. Evaluate the situation and throw what you don't need into a big donation box.

Mixing bowls and baking ware are easy to accidentally have a lot of (via Refined Rooms). Typically baking sheets start to look gnarly, so we buy some new ones but never actually get rid of the others. Check out which are in the best condition and keep two or three. Most cookie recipes fill two baking sheets, but you know best what you do with them, so keep what you use the most often.

Every home has a junk drawer, and they are filled with almost the same things (via Clean and Scentsible) — batteries, a tiny screwdriver, salt packets, random napkins, and maybe a few pens. Most of what is in there is for those "just in case" moments. So while some things can stay, a lot is trash you can do without.

Cookbooks and cleaning supplies

You probably have a few cookbooks in your kitchen, whether as a wedding gift or a housewarming gift. They are aesthetically pleasing, and you always have good intentions to flip through them and make something out of them. However, many times they are left on a shelf to collect dust. To free up some space, pull them all out and take a hard look at which ones you'll use. Are you going to reference that keto book again now that you've sworn off the diet? Is that bread book taking up too much space, and you only made that one failed loaf? Not to mention, there are so many excellent resources online for recipes that it can be hard to justify cookbooks. Keep the ones you love, and maybe toss a few in that donation box so that someone else can get better use of them.

Typically found under the sink, cleaning supplies are sometimes kept in the kitchen as well (via The Kitchn). There might be a spray bottle of window cleaner, disinfectant spray, or wipes, and it might also be where you store the dishwasher pods and dish soap. But through the rushed days of wiping counters and cleaning up spills, it can get messy under there. Take the time to pull everything out, throw away expired supplies and ruined sponges, and organize them back under the sink. Maybe even invest in a cabinet organizer to keep everything tidy.

Food items

Everyone has gone to the store and stood in the aisle trying to remember if they have that particular spice at home. The fear of not having it and needing to run back to the store wins, and you buy it anyway only to go back home and see that you have an entire container. Spices are one of the most common items in the kitchen that contribute to clutter. It's a good idea to spend some time reviewing what you have, checking expiration dates, and cleaning up the spice area.

Similarly, take a good look at your pantry. Check the dates and organize everything in a way that will allow you to use the oldest items first. Maybe set up your meal planning for the next month so you can use up what you have before you keep buying more (via The Kitchn). This is a great way to save some money on groceries for the next few weeks and clear out the pantry. This also applies to the refrigerator and the freezer. The freezer is always cluttered, and you might go through it and find big blobs of frozen substances you can't even recognize anymore.


Walking through the checkout line in stores like TJ Maxx and Homegoods means you have to try not to snag those adorable kitchen towels that hang in the aisle. These towels are always on trend for the next season and are so tempting! But now you have a drawer or two filled to the brim with festive, seasonal, or funny towels. These take up a lot of space, and if there isn't another place in your home you can store them, it's best to go through them and downsize. Some might be stained, ruined, or not used very often (via Simple Lionheart Life). Keep your favorites and make cleaning rags for the others. Oven mitts tend to be the same way. Go through them and keep the essentials. You only have two hands, so do you really need that many?

Everyone loves a good mug, but there might be just too many in your cabinet. If they are more of a collection, consider investing in a storage solution that could show them off without taking up precious cabinet space.

Tupperware is another item that usually accumulates over time (via Clean and Scentsible). You send leftovers home with your mom, or grandma gives you a big batch of soup, and now you have a mixed-matched set of containers. It's time to take them out of that messy drawer and find the lids to each one. Next, get rid of the ones that you don't like and return the others to their owners.

Cooking appliances

Did you see Joanna Gains use a waffle maker to make Sunday breakfast for her kids, and now you have one in your kitchen that you seldom use? Most people have been wooed by an idea and thought they had to have that nifty kitchen gadget that would make their life easier. Things like waffle makers, yogurt makers, ice cream machines, Kitchen Aid mixers, food processors, blenders, and margarita machines are fun (via Simple Lionheart Life). However, they are large items that can take up a lot of space for how little you'll be using them. 

This is a great time to refer to the questions mentioned above. Have you used the item within the last three months? Will you use it within the next three? Getting rid of just a few of these small appliances can free up a lot of space and might even give you an opportunity to get something you'll actually use on a regular basis.