An Organized Lifestyle

Kitchen Drawer Deep Dive

May 13, 2021

Hello, I'm Rachel
I’m a busy mom, entrepreneur, and an expert in organizing your home, office, and life. I believe in the profound impact of organizing on every aspect of life. 
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You know that we love all types of organizing around here! Recently we have done blog posts on closet organization, pantry trends, organizing your phone, we do not discriminate on what we organized. However it has been a bit since we have given drawers the undivided attention they deserve.

Pantries tend to get all of the glory in the kitchen but your kitchen drawers have just as much of an impact on your daily life. I have previously shared a step by step guide on organizing your kitchen drawers (see that post here) but want to dive a little deeper into the different ways to organize kitchen drawers. There are essentially 5 ways you can organize drawers and each one has its own pros, cons and situations where they work best. Let’s talk through each scenario, shall we?

How to Organize Kitchen Drawers

Built-In Organizers: Built-in drawer organizers can be a real luxury but need to be approached with caution. There is never going to be a one-size-fits-all solution for drawer organization so built-in organizers can often leave you without the correct solutions in each drawer. If you are considering built-in organizers (say you are building a home or remodeling your kitchen) make sure you are really considering what you will be storing in that space. Do you have a lot of long tools? Then a drawer with several long skinny sections is great but your baking drawer might need more dividers than that. How many different types of flatware do you have for your flatware drawer? Do your pots and pans work with a peg drawer situation?

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Drawer Dividers: Drawer dividers are great for creating long lines of categories in your drawers. Think rows of coffee pods, long skinny cooking tools, kitchen towels or keeping soda cans in a row in a fridge drawer. The situations where drawer dividers aren’t the best are when you need to have a home for smaller items. If you use a drawer divider in a drawer that has a lot of smaller tools, like your measuring cups and spoons, there is a good chance that all of the different items you include in that section are going to eventually be jumbled up together. Using bins (more on that next) works better in this scenario.

Bins: Bins tend to be my go to when organizing drawers. Bins come in a variety of sizes and that level of customization makes my organizer’s heart so happy! I love using bins (especially these plastic bins here) for organizing kitchen drawers that have a lot of different tools. The ability to mix and match sizes to pick bins that are the perfect size for each tool or category allows you to easily keep up the system in the long run. Multi-purpose bins are also a great option if you have fridge or freezer drawers – these drawers can easily become overrun and the bins keep everything in its place. Finally, be mindful of the material you are selecting for your bins – plastic tends to work best in a kitchen as it can easily be wiped down.

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Drawer Organizers: Pre-made drawer organizers should be used only in certain scenarios. Similar to built-in drawer organizers you need to ensure that the predesigned sections and slots work for your kitchen, your kitchen tools and your drawer sizes. I think that drawer organizers work well for things like spices – the options out there really work well – knives, and in some cases for flatware and kitchen tools.

Au Naturel: Finally, you can, of course, organize your drawers without any organizational items. This works best for bigger bulky items or things that will easily stay in place. Think pots and pans (with the lids on their respective pots), food storage containers or mixing bowls. I don’t suggest going au naturel with your smaller drawers but for large deep drawers it can work really well!

Bonus Tips:

  • Store kids items in drawers that are at their level but don’t push the organization too much in those drawers. This is perfect when you have younger kiddos that you want to take some responsibility for themselves and give them access to things like their plastic plates and cups. You can let these drawers be a bit messy without any organizational system beyond tossing the items in and letting the kids have access when they need them.

  • Nesting can be a really great option in your drawers (in almost all of the scenarios above) if you don’t have a ton of drawer space. I love nesting mixing bowls, measuring spoons, food storage containers and more in drawers to create more space but still allow everything to be easily accessible.

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Drawer Organizing Products

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I'm Rachel, founder of Rachel & Company

I’m dedicated to helping you create a lifestyle that is more organized, sustainable, and joyously livable.

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