8 Ways to Make Your Kitchen Safer and Easier to Use
Cooking can be a lot of fun, but there are also days when it’s a hectic and messy business. Everything inside the kitchen, including the layout and equipment, affects how efficient you’ll be and how much safe it is for you and the rest of the family members. Here are a couple of tips if you want to experience less stress and make your kitchen more comfortable to use.
1. The power of the triangle
When trying to create the best possible organization and increase your kitchen efficiency, the location of essential kitchen elements is crucial.
The triangle, or the shape of the area between the fridge, stove, and sink, needs to be well-planned. The main purpose is to limit the number of steps you take from one work station to another. Also, you should keep the triangle even if you change the kitchen layout – it’s the only way to ensure efficient storage for your pots and pans.
2. Put labels
Everything stored in the kitchen, such as small tools, leftovers, or various containers, should be labeled with painter’s tape. Maybe you think it’s unnecessary to label everything, but it will save you the time you waste by opening a container to see what’s inside of it. You simply grab a specific box and move on. If you don’t like labels, you can use clear containers instead, which will allow you to see what’s inside by only looking at it.
3. Safety measures
The kitchen is where a lot of accidents and injuries usually happen, so do your best to prevent it.
- The most important measure is to get a fire extinguisher and keep it near the stove. You need to know how to use it and make sure it’s up to date.
- Falls are the most common cause of serious injuries, and slippery floors in the kitchen can be a dangerous trap. Prevent falls by placing an anti fatigue mat that will reduce the risk of slipping and trauma and also reduce stress on your feet and legs from too much standing.
- Step stool should also be kept in the kitchen to help you reach high places. It’s very easy to fall while trying to reach something from the upper cupboard. And don’t use a chair for the same purpose – they are not as stable.
- Placing the microwave at the right height is important, too – if you set it very low, you will quickly start experiencing back problems. On the other hand, if it’s difficult for you to reach the microwave, you won’t be able to see what’s inside, and you’ll increase the risk of spilling the food or hot beverage all over yourself.
- Keep the first aid kit within your reach so that you can get a hand of burn ointment or bandages quickly. You need to know what’s inside the package and how to use it before you need it.
- Lastly, invest in a knife rack so that the knives don’t lay around loose and never use them with wet or greasy hands.
4. Set up stations
To maximize effectiveness in the kitchen, you should organize it into five distinctive stations.
The station’s purpose is to store everything inside the kitchen as close as possible to its corresponding station. For example, the cleaning station is where you can keep your everyday dishes close to the dishwasher and the sink while mixing bowls, chopping blocks, and knives should be stored in the preparation station. It’s clear what to store in the food store station while keeping Tupperware and other less frequently used items in the non-food station. Lastly, the cooking station will stock pots, pans, and other cooking items close to the stove.
5. Hang a notepad
A magnetic notepad and a pen are a great help in the kitchen. Of course, you can use the notepad for making a grocery list during the week, but you can also write down short notes on cooking tricks, ingredients, or anything else you think could be useful to remember. That way, nothing will get forgotten.
6. Hang up some items
A tiny kitchen will be more efficient if you create more space for storage. If there’s wall space, place hooks there to hang frequently used pots, whisks, and spatulas – it’s best if it’s close to the cooking station. You can even attach a full-hooked rack above the kitchen island and create even more space.
7. Surround yourself with favorites
When standing in a specific place in the kitchen, you should be surrounded by knives, chopping boards, favorite spices, etc. Of course, the selection of the favorites will depend on your cooking style. For example, if you bake a lot, then cookie cutters should be close to you.
8. Sharpen the knives
Your knives should be sharpened before and after every use, which will allow you to work faster and speed up the cooking process. You should also know that the duller the knife is, the more chances are for you to cut yourself with it because it’s harder to control.
An efficient kitchen is a place where you’ll enjoy spending time. Cooking will be more relaxed while you’ll also clean it faster. Invest some time in organizing the layout and the storage of all elements – you’ll notice the difference on the very first day.
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