Despite the rise of online food delivery services like Deliveroo and Just Eat, 54% of people still regard the kitchen as the “heart of the home”. The kitchen is not just a utility space for heating food, but a crucial aspect of our home and our lives – and a functional kitchen makes our lives measurably easier. Here we’ll take a look at some simple ways we can optimise kitchen spaces – to make cooking quicker, easier, more comfortable and more enjoyable.

Get Rid of the Clutter

We’re all guilty of it: the house keys, the mail-outs and letters to previous residents, random tools from flat-pack furniture and the button whose coat you haven’t yet rediscovered, all taking pride of place on one – or several – of your kitchen’s work surfaces. And maybe the kitchen table. De-cluttering is the first step to reclaiming your kitchen. Find homes for anything that shouldn’t belong in a kitchen; banish the post, relocate the penny jar, relegate the bike pump to the shed. Now for the things that do belong in the kitchen.

Sort through all of your cupboards, and ensure that everything is in its right place. If you don’t bake so much, store baking-related trays, ingredients and utensils in the least accessible cupboard. Bunch your spices together, and throw out anything you haven’t picked up in over a year. The objective is to make it easier for you to find the things you do need – and to know exactly where things are when you might need them.

Upgrade Your Kitchen Equipment

If you’re still struggling along with the non-stick frying pan you bought from a supermarket 5 years ago, and that has long since lost its non-stick properties, it’s time to think about an upheaval of your kitchen equipment. Old, scratched pans make cooking a chore, and become a nightmare to clean; invest in a new non-stick pan set from Circulon to rediscover the joys of cooking without a handicap. The same goes for appliances – now might be the time to put your struggling oven to rest, and invest in one that will keep a steadier heat.

Upgrade Your Storage

Your workflow in the kitchen would be improved by the introduction of newer storage solutions; think pull-out spice racks by the hob, or rolling shelves in cupboards to enable you access to pots and pans. If your kitchen is big enough to facilitate more cupboards, this is an excellent way to ensure no clutter ever makes its way onto a work surface. If your kitchen is on the smaller side, consider installing a bar above your hob, and hanging your pans from it via meat-hooks – an elegant, efficient and decorative storage solution.

Get a Smart Speaker

Smart speakers are a fantastic way to keep your kitchen functional, while also providing entertainment during your cooking. Smart speakers are voice activated, and can track multiple timers for you – meaning you can keep track of your cooking in a completely hands-free manner.

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