If you ever take a moment to stop and take stock of all of the stuff you have in one room of your house or apartment, you may be overwhelmed. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you still seem to acquire more and more stuff. The kitchen is a room in the house that can really get packed with excess items that just aren’t necessary. If you feel like you are on the verge of becoming a hoarder, worry no more. We have a quick list of 10 things you can get rid of right now to declutter. You can donate most of these items, too, which will make you feel even better about yourself.
Every time you get a takeout order, they give you those plastic forks and knives. Do you really need to save them? What are you going to use them for? If it is disposable, throw it out. Or, better yet, recycle it. Yes, this includes chopsticks, as well.
Dried spices and herbs lose their flavor over time. Typically, whole spices will keep for around four years, ground spices for about two-three years, and dried herbs for one-three years. Once they pass their prime, you are pretty much keeping little jars of dust. When the spices and herbs lose their flavor, throw them away. You can always wash and keep the little jars and then refill them with new spices that actually add flavor to your dishes.
If you’re one of those people that likes to grab a menu when you are in a restaurant that you like, odds are you have accumulated a whole drawer full of them by now. Add to these the paper menus that restaurants automatically throw in with your takeaway order, and you will soon have an overwhelming collection. Two things I’ve learned about takeout menus: First of all, if you order from the place often, you already know the menu and what you are going to order. Second, almost every restaurant has an online menu at this point. Do yourself a favor, recycle all of those menus, and free up a drawer in your kitchen.
Extra Water Bottles
Unless you plan on running or hiking long distances, you probably don’t need more than a few water bottles. Saving water bottles, whether plastic, metal, or otherwise, just creates clutter. Most people use the same one or two bottles over and over again, anyway. Pick your favorite few water bottles and let the rest go.
Duplicate Measuring Cups
Unless you bake enough to open a bakery, you don’t need several sets of measuring cups and spoons. Having more than one set of cups and spoons is more than enough for the average person. It’s safe to donate the extra ones.
Extra Cups and Mugs
Having enough glassware and mugs for when you have company over is definitely necessary, but it is not every day that you will use 12 mugs and 15 water glasses. Keep enough cups and mugs for your everyday use in the kitchen cupboard and store the rest, if you must, in a storage bin outside of the kitchen. This way, you will be prepared if an unexpected party of 12 shows up at your door, but you will not have a cluttered glass cupboard for the rest of the year.
Sometimes when you’re cooking a big meal, you need two whisks or spatulas. This doesn’t mean you need six of each of these. Get rid of the extra pairs of tongs, sauce brushes, slotted spoons, ladles, etc. that you don’t need. Keeping just two of each of these items can free up a whole drawer or space.
Leaky Travel Mugs
If you are a coffee or tea drinker, you probably have an excessive amount of travel mugs. Travel mugs are necessary, that is without question. However, the ones with missing or leaky lids are not. Just like water bottles, you probably have one or two favorite travel mugs, too. Choose a few that you cannot live without and pitch the others.
Lids without Pots
Lids that have lost their counterpart pot or pan are useless. Keeping these extra lids clutters your cupboards. A fair argument can be made for holding on to pots that have lost their top somewhere along the way, so go ahead and keep those. You can safely ditch the extra lids, though.
This one is a refrigerator-maintenance item, but it is equally as important as the others. Checking the dates on your ketchup, ranch dressing, mustard, etc. can get rid of a lot of clutter inside your refrigerator. This is an excellent habit to get into every time you buy a new condiment. Give the existing sauces in your fridge a quick once-over, and you will be pleasantly surprised by how much space you free up by doing so.
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