Canned food organizers

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Got a cabinet or pantry full of disorganized cans and can’t seem to get them in order?  Oh yes you can!

Here are three different types of canned food organizers that make it easy to keep all your cans orderly and accessible:

  • The slim (only 5.5 inches wide), compact Canned Food Dispenser stores up to nine 10.5- to 16-ounce cans on two levels. When you remove a can from the bottom tier, another can takes its place thanks to the gravity-feed release system. This space-saving can storage system also works well on refrigerator shelves to keep soda cans neatly stored and easy to grab.
  • The Wire Can Storage Rack provides three spacious shelves (18 inches wide by 16 inches) of storage space for canned goods, designed to accommodate a total of up to 45 cans of varying sizes. The shelves are slanted to allow the next can in line to roll to the front (a rim keeps cans from rolling off the shelf), and the base has rubber feet to keep the unit firmly in place.
  • The Canned Food Organizer Rack features six angled shelves with ample room to store all sizes of canned necessities. You can fit several cans on each rack–the number will depend on the size of each can.  This organizer is also versatile: it can be assembled into one large rack or two smaller ones.
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Answer: Cheese slices storage

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Q. What’s the best way to keep American cheese slices tidy in the fridge? Once the package is opened they’re all over the place!

A. There are storage containers designed to solve this specific organizing issue.  One example is the BPA-free clear plastic Sliced Cheese Storage Container–it will hold up to 16 individually wrapped cheese slices.  A more whimsical design that actually holds more slices (24) is the Moo Moo Cheese Singles Container (also made of BPA-free plastic).  Either of these clever cheese containers can help keep your refrigerator neatly organized instead of having cheese scattered all over it. 

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Kitchen under-cabinet storage systems

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Under Cabinet Storage SystemsKeeping kitchen counters and cabinets uncluttered can be a challenge. Under-cabinet storage systems provide a space-saving solution, allowing you to utilize the area above your counters. This type of storage also makes frequently used items easily accessible.

Here are three different types of efficient under-cabinet storage systems to help you keep your kitchen organized and clutter-free:

  • Under-cabinet stemware storage is ideal for households where wine is enjoyed on a regular basis. The Under Cabinet Stemware Rack is designed to hold a variety of stemware shapes and sizes, from wine goblets to martini glasses and champagne flutes. Featuring a unique mounting plate that permits easy installation on the bottom of frameless or framed cabinets (using just four screws), it’s available in three different finishes.  Another easy-to-install system is the chrome Under Cabinet Wine and Stemware Rack, which can hold six bottles of wine in addition to six wine glasses.
  • Under-cabinet knife storage lets you keep knives safely hidden away yet handy without sacrificing counter or drawer space. There are two kinds: the drop-down knife drawer that pulls down and angles towards you, with magnetic strips to keep knives in place; and the swing-out knife block with a 360-degree swivel (great for kitchen islands with overhead storage) and magnetized knife slots to hold knives securely. One crucial difference is that a swing-out block is visible whereas a drop-down knife drawer is hidden, designed to rest flush with the bottom of a cupboard.
  • Under-cabinet cookbook holders offer a simple solution to the problem of where to keep the cookbook you need to refer to while you’re trying out a new recipe. The spring-loaded Under Cabinet Cookbook Holder makes it easy to instantly access a cookbook when and where you need it, then stores it out of the way under a cabinet when you’re done.  It’s constructed of clear acrylic for complete invisibility.

 

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Answer: Storing dried pasta

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Q. What’s the best way to store dried spaghetti and other long pastas so they don’t get buggy or stale? I’ve always kept them in their original boxes but lately have had a problem with bug infestation (ugh). I don’t want to use glass containers since I’m afraid of breakage so I guess that leaves plastic but I’d want the BPA-free kind. Any suggestions?

A. I recommend the Progressive Pasta ProKeeper. It’s crafted from BPA-free plastic with an air-tight silicone seal that keeps stored pasta fresh and safe from bugs. (Tip: Bay leaves are supposed to repel pantry bugs; there are many claims that keeping a bay leaf in with your pasta will deter insects.) The container also features a unique body shape that funnels pasta toward the spout for easy dispensing. With an approximate 2.36-quart capacity, this pasta keeper can hold up to 2 pounds of spaghetti noodles. The hinged lid swings back so you can easily access the inside of the container, and the snap closure keeps the lid secured. The lid has a sliding door so you can measure out 1 to 3 servings of pasta.

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Space-saving kitchen storage helpers

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jokari standup produce bagFinding more space in your kitchen isn’t impossible.  You just need the right kitchen storage helpers.

By “helpers” I mean products that make life easier yet take up virtually no room.  Here are three amazingly cost-efficient helpers that are designed to reduce messes while maximizing kitchen storage space:

  • The Countertop Storage Bag Holder provides an easy, convenient way to load soups, salsas and other potentially messy foods into storage bags–http://www.organizeit.com/images/alt/alt_countertop-storage-bag-holder_1.jpgwithout the mess. Designed to fold flat so it easily fits in drawers and cabinets when not in use, this clever device uses adjustable clips to hold open zip-lock bags of just about any size as you pour foods for storage.  It can also be used to hold bags open for washing on the top rack of your dishwasher.
  • The Collapsible Funnel lets you easily transfer liquids from one container to another without making a mess on the counter, then collapses down when not in use for space-saving storage. The plastic handle gives you a firm grip while you’re pouring. You can also rest this funnel right into a waiting bottle so you can use both hands for pouring a hot liquid. Simply swing the handle down and expand the funnel; the handle becomes a part of the funnel to provide a handy freestanding design.
  • Progressive Kitchen Scissors with Magnetic Cover makes it easy to store scissors accessibly yet safely. The magnetic sleeve allows you to efficiently attachProgressive Kitchen Scissors with Magnetic Cover Image the included kitchen scissors to any magnetic surface, such as your fridge or freezer. The comfortable, sure-grip handles reduce slipping so you can easily cut through tough materials. The serrated blade edge ensures the blade won’t slide around when cutting almost any material.  An added feature is the steel tooth inserts on the inner handles–they’re designed for opening bottles.
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Cereal storage solutions

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cereal storageCereal is perennially popular, not just for breakfast but also for snacking.  That’s why there are literally hundreds of different cereals (check out this list), with new ones popping up all the time.

But all cereals have two inherent problems: they lose their crunch when not stored properly, and they can be messy to dispense.  Fortunately there are now cereal storage solutions designed to solve both of these maddening issues.  Here are three cereal dispensers that will keep your cereals crunchy and tidy too:

  • The OXO Countertop Cereal Dispenser consists of a clear, BPA-free plastic 5-1/2-quart-capacity canister (it can hold the entire contents of one large cereal box) that sits atop a dispensing mechanism with a spring-loaded lever on each side.  It features one-handed dispensing–you OXO Countertop Cereal Dispenser Imagesimply press either of the levers to release the cereal down the chute, through a trap-door opening and into your waiting bowl.  Silicone seals on the canister lid and inside the dispenser work together to keep stored cereal fresh.  The chute opening won’t crush cereal while dispensing, and the removable bottom tray helps keep counters free of cereal debris.
  • The Double Food Dispensing Canister is a similar counter-top concept, but it features two canisters that each have an easy-to-use front knob for quick dispensing.  It’s available in white, black or red.
  • The Bag-In Cereal Storage Container and Dispenser is an economical option that’s more suited for keeping in a cabinet or on a pantry shelf.   The clear, BPA-free plastic container accommodates standard size cereal bags, and has an innovative bag gripper design with an airtight seal that keeps bagged cereals fresh. A flip-open pour spout on the lid provides neat dispensing. Another product, the Easy Pour Food Storage Container and Dispenser, is very similar but larger; it also has a handle which makes it easier to pour but takes up more shelf space.

More cereal storage solutions can be found here.

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Answer: Butter storage

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Q. Is there a tidy & hygienic way to store a stick of butter that lets you keep the wrapper on it? I’ve tried various butter dishes but those all seem to be designed for wrapper-less butter.  Also I need it to fit 5-inch by 1/4-inch sticks.

A. I think the Stick Butter Container could be exactly what you’ve been looking for, and it’s only $1.99. Perfectly sized to accommodate a 1/4- pound stick of East Coast-sized* butter (5 inches by 1-1/4 inch by 1-1/4 inch), the form-fitting design doesn’t waste any space inside the fridge. And it lets you leave the wrapping on the butter so you can easily measure out tablespoons later. Crafted from clear BPA-free plastic, it has a hinged lid that snaps closed to keep the stored butter fresh.

*  Find out why sticks of butter are long and skinny in the East but short and fat in the West–this article explains the mystery.

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Cutting board storage solutions

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Cutting Board HolderCutting boards can be awkward to store efficiently.  The variety of sizes and thicknesses makes it difficult to keep them orderly.  Effective cutting board storage also requires good air circulation so you can put the boards away when they’re not quite dry.

Here are three different types of cutting board storage solutions:

  • Cabinet door or wall mount. The steel Cutting Board Holder features a screw-mount system and pre-drilled holes for easy installation on cabinet doors, inside a pantry or on a wall.
  • Under shelfUnder-shelf storage baskets require no installation. Made of coated metal wire, these handy storage solutions are designed to slide onto a shelf and provide open storage below. They’re available in a range of sizes and finishes.
  • Roll-out.  The Roll-Out Kitchen Cabinet Tray Divider features smooth epoxy-coated roller slides, a half-inch-thick wood laminate base, and heavy-gauge steel wire tray dividers with a white finish. The unit fits in cabinet spaces with at least a 9-inch opening.

Other ideas for cutting board storage can be found here.

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Space-saving cabinet trash containers

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trash containerCabinet trash containers solve two common dilemmas: how to hide away a trash receptacle yet still have it easily accessible; and what to do if there isn’t enough floor space for a wastebasket.

Here are three types of super space-saving cabinet trash containers:

  • Both the Rack Sack Bathroom Trash System and the Rack Sack Kitchen Trash System (pictured) are wire-frame trash bag holders that mount directly to the inside of a cabinet door. The bathroom trash system can hold a 1-gallon Rack Sack trash bag. The kitchen trash system is larger and can be adjusted to hold either 3-gallon or 5-gallon trash bags. Both systems have plastic lids that are cleverly designed with a storage compartment for conveniently storing extra bags.
  • Sliding Cabinet Trash Cans consist of a slide-out steel frame that mounts to the base of cabinets and holds a removable trash container, available in several sizes.
  • Swing-out Trash Cans mount inside the cabinet and pivot out when the cabinet door is opened; a lifting mechanism automatically raises the lid and then closes it when the door is shut.  A removable interior container lifts out with a handle for easy cleaning

Other types of cabinet door trash containers can be found here.

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Lazy Susan turntable organizers

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lazy susan organizersLazy Susan turntable organizers aren’t just for kitchens and dining tables.  They’re also useful on desks, inside bathroom cabinets, and in craft rooms or workshops. The rotating design lets you easily access a variety of items from all sides.

A classic Lazy Susan consists of a single circular surface that spins on a base.  But there are several variations that make them more effective as organizing tools.  Here are three different types of Lazy Susan organizers that are worth a whirl:

  • Turntables with compartments.  The spinning Paper Napkin Holder has three sections: a large middle slot designed to store paper napkins (but also useful for holding notepads), and a small tray on either side for keeping small supplies handy. The Silver Mesh Spinning Organizer has four compartments for simple storage of frequently used items such as condiments on a tabletop, spices and toothpicks in a cabinet, or office supplies.
  • Two-level turntables. The 11-inch Two-Level Clear Lazy Susan Turntable can instantly help organize a cluttered kitchen cabinet, or be used on a table or countertop.  The two-level design consists of a raised level in the center measuring six inches in diameter, and a bottom level with an 11-inch diameter.
  • Double-shelf turntables. The Two-Tier Stainless Steel Lazy Susan Turntable features a pair of shelves to maximize vertical space. It offers approximately 5-1/4 inches of space between the bottom and top shelf.  Two-tier Lazy Susans also come in several other materials, including bamboo and plastic with non-slip rubber surfaces.
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