I have to tell you upfront I am not a baker. I don’t even play one on TV. I have, however, organized many clients who bake. I bake by default because I have kids (it’s a necessity with kids). This article is inspired by my latest client– and my dear, if you are reading, I am writing this because I am jealous of your lovely baking talent.
Baking ingredients are very messy. There is no doubt about it– the flour, sugar, baking soda, all these powdery ingredients that cover our kitchen with a white cloud of dust. It is not a bad thing, just fact. We want to make our baking ingredients easy to access, and we want them to be free of the yucky bugs that love them. (If you have never been lucky enough to experience them that is a whole another blog). How do we do that? For starters, I love the containers available everywhere for dry goods. Not only do they stand tall and look awesome and clean in your cabinets, they keep out critters. I also like them because of the large openings. That is a necessity when scooping out flour and sugar. I received some cool looking canisters for a wedding gift a long time ago that I registered for, and the buggers are too narrow. I can’t fit a measuring cup in them and frankly never really used them. I wish I had known then what I know now. But I digress.
If you are an avid baker or a seasonal baker here are some hints to keep your baking items handy.
1. Arrange all your baking goods in the same area of your kitchen. When you are in the mist of a creation, you can access everything and not run all over you kitchen. Cookie cutters, cake decorating tips and accessories, sprinkles and frosting coloring should be organized with each other in separate drawers or containers.
2. A drawer with organizing trays arranged to fit in the drawer are great for measuring cups and spoons. Little things that are used, such as frosting decorating tips, toothpicks, even candles.
3. Bulk ingredients like flour and sugar work great stored in clear plastic containers. Look for ones that seal and have a large enough opening to scoop with a measuring cup and fit your hand in when half full or less. Smaller canisters are perfect for brown sugar, powdered sugar and oatmeal.
4. I like to store sprinkles in an open bin on a shelf in the cabinet. The containers they are purchased in come in all different sizes and it will make it easier for you to keep in an open bin. I also like to store candy ingredients, such as chocolate chips in open bins. It keeps them from falling all over the place and helps you get what you need.
5. Baking pans and sheets can be tricky. They come in unusual shapes and sizes and it makes it hard to stack and store them neatly. If you have a small kitchen, creating an easy access shelf in a storage area for seasonal pans is a good way to keep them from cluttering your kitchen cabinets. Look for pull out shelves at your local hardware store. Some are equipped to hold sheets and pan horizontally. It saves space and headache when accessing.
6. Cookie cutters tend to take up a lot of space because of their odd shapes and sizes. I keep my cookie cutters in a large cookie tin on a shelf in my storage room where I keep extra cooking items I don’t use very often. Along side of that is a cookie press and all these things I use only a few times a year.
There are so many different types of baking utensils and wares I have only touched on part of them. The art of storage on organizing these things is creating the proper space for storage. Keep like items with like items and store in containers that are useful and fulfill the needs for you to have a well-run and efficient baking experience. Baking is always fun for the kids and that is what makes it worthwhile for me. After all, flour and frosting can be easily cleaned up and I have a craving for a Santa shaped cookie with orange frosting and five gumdrops piled on top. Enjoy your season. Cheers