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Meal planning has been an increasingly popular option for people that want to start eating better – but it can be difficult to know where to start.

There’s plenty to consider when starting a meal planning routine, but one of the biggest factors may be a surprise: getting your kitchen organized to handle it all!

 

With a meal planning regimen, the plans themselves go way beyond “what’s for dinner”. You have to incorporate every step of the process, from the initial trip to the grocery store to the hours of thawing, cutting, and preparing, and it can take a little more preparation than you might be expecting.

One of the areas you’ll want to focus on when it comes to your meal prep is how organized your kitchen is. Sticking with a meal regiment and a diet plan includes making sure your kitchen is organized well enough to handle the various supplies you’ll need, as well as making sure everything is easily accessible.

 

The first step is to remove everything from your shelves. This will help you better figure out what needs to go where, and better yet what you can get rid of. Toss out anything that’s expired, anything you know you won’t be using, or anything that doesn’t quite fit in with your new meal-planning regimen. It’ll be easier to avoid temptation this way by making sure it’s not in your house long enough to tempt you.

 

Next, remove everything that isn’t used for cooking. If you have things like cleaning supplies or pet food in your pantry, it’ll be easier to find everything else by relocating these items into their own separate area, or at least a different pantry.

 

From there you’ll want to organize by priority. If there’s certain ingredients you’ll be using more often, or something you know you’ll be making sooner than later, place those up front so they’re easier to access. Use pantry organizers to sort out everything you won’t be reaching for as often, and watch as your routine gets that much easier.

 

As you’re looking through your ingredients, see which of them can be stored in their own containers. Things like flour and oatmeal can take up a lot of space that may be better used elsewhere, and by sorting these into transparent food containers (or even plastic bins in the event of bulk goods) you can free up space you might need for food that can’t be repackaged so easily.

 

Finally, after you’ve made all the space you can in your pantry, it may be time to look outside the pantry. Take a look at the meals you’ve got planned and see what can be removed from the pantry for the sake of convenience – think canned goods, raw produce, or even things like pots and pans you’ll need for heating and preparing the meals themselves. Corner shelves are a popular option for stashing plates and larger ingredient containers, and kitchen carts can be an easy way to store ingredients that you use in several different dishes, as well as helping them stay mobile around the kitchen.

When planning your kitchen for a meal prep plan, the trick is to keep everything accessible and make sure you have a plan for what you’ll need, and when. Once the kitchen is in place, you’ll find that sticking with your meal plans are easier than you expected.

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