By Sara Hampt

Published on April 28, 2015

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Have you ever gone to make a recipe and found you have 10 cans of creamed corn and none of what you were looking for? This can be avoided with some simple organizing tricks so you can quickly scan your cabinets and see everything you have.

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step 1: remove everything

Time for a deep cabinet purge. Remove everything from your cabinet so you can see what you have. This is also the time to take a wet cloth and wipe down the shelves. 

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step 2 categorize

After checking expiration dates (and tossing what's no longer good to have around), divide the items into categories. Take a look at how much space you have for each grouping.

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step 3 reevaluate

Create a shelf plan by thinking about proper category placement. For example, the group you reach for most often should be on the easiest-to-access shelf. 

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step 4 get creative

Worried about everything falling into chaos again? Now's the time to designate areas for your groups to live. Cut colored contact paper into pieces of paper large enough to be placed on shelves. You're likely to keep all your items in one place if you recognize their resting zones. 

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step 5 reorder 

Place everything back in the cabinets, leaving a line of empty space between each group. Place taller items in the back; shorter ones in the front.