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How to Cook In Small Spaces

Posted By Heather Rusick on 8/1/14 12:01 PM

tiny kitchen

The kitchen is the center of the household and where most of the action takes place – it is the room that people gravitate to and where conversations begin. But how do you entertain in a tiny apartment, let alone cook a meal in a tiny kitchen? The thought for some can be a frightening task. The lack of space to maneuver and spread out can entice even the best of cooks to order takeout. Cooking in a tiny kitchen can have its disadvantages but according to Terri Lee, Creative Director of Great Performance, it also has its advantages,

“Learning to cook or entertain in a small space is a fantastic skill-building exercise! It forces you to be organized, stay simple and start perfecting techniques to help maximize your space,” says Lee. “Soon enough you’ll rediscover the joys of cooking.”

Just because your kitchen is tiny doesn’t mean it can’t be mighty! Here are a few helpful tips that will make your life easier while cooking:

Plan Ahead

Efficiently is key! Before you get started on your cooking adventure, plan out exactly how much food you're really going to need and only take out that amount; you'll save a lot of counter space by only taking out the essentials. If you’re really feeling wild, prep the food you are going to cook the night before, store it in Tupperware and it will be ready for you the next day; eliminating the need for a cutting board, etc., freeing up even more counter space.

Clean As You Go

No one likes a dirty kitchen, so why not clean as you cook? Cleaning as you cook will not only clear away the clutter but it will eliminate the nightly task altogether, allowing you time for some R&R. 

Only The Essentials

You have to focus on functionality and not gadgetry. It's nice to have all the latest gadgets for all kinds of things you can do in the kitchen, but if you don't have the space to store them, they simply become clutter and take up valuable space. Be realistic about the things you will actually use; if you don't anticipate using your small appliances several times a week, you don't need it. Make sure that you have the basic essentials, a chef's knife, a spatula, wooden spoon, saucepan, and a fry pan. Most people can get a pretty decent meal done with just these items.

Cooking in a small kitchen can be very frustrating if you're not organized. Learning to focus on only those things that are going to be used regularly and are going to prove to be worth the investment is the secret to a smooth running kitchen. Take the advice of Gloria Dawson of Earth 911,

"An apartment dweller can't flip through cookbooks or culinary magazines without feeling inadequate. Images of spacious countertops, shelves that hold every spice imaginable and long dining room tables all strike envy in the hearts of city cooks. It's enough to make you want to call for takeout and never cook again."

Yet, with a little practice you'll soon learn that you can cook fabulous meals in the smallest of spaces without missing a beat. With careful organization and a little creative thinking you can show that size really doesn't matter when it comes to your kitchen. It may take some time to get used cooking in a small apartment kitchen, but you'll soon discover that once you apply your creativity to kitchen design there will be plenty left over to throw into you cooking.

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