Kitchens are the heart of the home where we gather with family and friends to share in the nourishing experience of a meal. All too often, though, we lack the time, know-how, energy, and commitment to what we eat. This year, I challenge you to Take Back Your Kitchen! For 2013, I offer you a baker’s dozen of tips. These (not so half-baked) ideas will put you back in charge of one of the most important rooms in your house.
1. Organize your cabinets and drawers: Spend this first weekend of the year going through each space in your kitchen to remove extra utensils and appliances that you don’t use. Donate them to a local thrift store. Removing clutter like this will give you and your kitchen more space to breathe.
2. Break out the elbow grease and gloves for some deep-cleaning and pot-scrubbing: If you’re lucky, the kids will pitch in too with a broom and mop. 🙂 Cooking in a clean environment is a happier and healthier experience.
3. Sharpen your knives
4. Write weekly menu plans: Get in the habit of spending up to 1 hour each week making a list of dinners you and your family will enjoy. Post your dinner plan in a visible central area for all to see.
5. Take inventory of your fridge, freezer, & pantry: Discard or compost expired food. Donate to a local food bank anything extra or that you won’t eat. Use the remaining items in your upcoming weekly menu plans.
6. Establish a designated day and time each week for grocery shopping: Write your grocery list based on your menu plan to reduce the number of trips you make to the grocery store.
7. Create a chore chart and cooking schedule: This ensures the whole family has their part in the cooking fun and kitchen maintenance.
9. Add an open box of baking soda to your fridge to soak up unpleasant smells
10. Freshen the table with a new tablecloth and napkins to brighten everyone’s spirits: Which of these 2013 color trends suits your kitchen best?
11. Treat yourself to a new candle and a bottle of wine: Cooking is more fun with both, and you’ve earned it after taking on this challenge.
12. Throw a dinner party! Show off your stylin’ kitchen and renewed efforts to get back in it and enjoy cooking for yourself and your family.
13. Last but not least, call on this Kitchen Concierge to receive 1-1 cooking instruction, healthy recipes, organization tips, and party planning.
Congratulations! If you’ve made it this far and commit to these tips, you are ready to Take Back Your Kitchen. Best wishes for much success, health, and happiness!