9 Things in Your Kitchen You Need to Get Rid of Right Now

published Jan 9, 2023
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A family of four looking through the storage in a pink and black kitchen
Credit: Minette Hand

When it comes to decluttering, I’m always amazed by how much more I can get rid of! Even after a big move, during which I went through all our belongings before packing, then again while packing, and then again while unpacking, I’m still finding things that I can (and should) say goodbye to. 

On the other side, though, the reward for letting go is a home that breathes better and functions more smoothly — and, perhaps no where is this more true than in the kitchen. To help get you started, here is a big list of items in your kitchen you can get rid of now.

1. Takeout Menus

When you don’t even have to make a phone call to place an order anymore, you certainly don’t need physical copies of menus. If you’ve got any of these in the bottom of a drawer or stuck on the fridge, into the recycling they go. 

Credit: Sarah Crowley

2. Condiment Packages from Takeout

Do you even remember to get out the mustard packet when you’re eating burgers at home? And do you really want to tear them and squeeze multiples when you have the luxury of that big easy-squeeze bottle in your fridge? Nope and nope. Toss them all. Mustard, ketchup, mayo, salt and pepper, relish, soy sauce — all of it. 

3. Takeout Utensils

Sense a theme here? If you want a few packages in your car, put them in your glove box. Toss the rest. Your kitchen storage space is too valuable to share with plastic utensils you’ll never use. 

4. Your Overflowing Stash of Plastic Garbage Bags

If your plastic garbage bags are overflowing, fill one of them with the rest of the extras and drop them off in the recycling bin next time you go to the grocery store. If this is a chronic problem, try to use your reusable shopping bags more often. 

5. The Small “Fun” Appliance You Never Use

It could be a fondue set, a panini press, an ice cream maker, or a waffle maker. Whatever it is, if you haven’t used it once in the last year, let it go. You’ll appreciate the extra space so much more and you’ll also unburden yourself of the guilt you feel from not using something you think you’re supposed to. 

6. Food Storage Containers Without Their Match

Things nobody has time or space for: Food storage containers with no lids and lids with no containers. Goodbye!

7. Cracked or Chipped Dishes of Any Kind

If you’re hanging on to chipped or cracked dinnerware, you’re risking getting nicked. (You’re also expending energy avoiding the cracks!) Let these go and replace anything you really need to. 

8. Expired Food

Check your dry goods, canned goods, and the condiments that have gotten lost in the back of your pantry shelves. Get rid of anything that’s expired. It’s awful to accidentally cook rice that’s gone rancid. (Ask me how I know. )

9. Duplicate Cooking Tools

Choose your “best, favorite, and necessary” when it comes to dealing with duplicate cooking tools. You don’t need two ice cream scoops, two sets of measuring cups, or eight spatulas, but you do need the breathing room you’ll have when you send them on their way.