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10 Kitchen Items You Can Finally Get Rid of

If your counters are covered in papers, your drawers are overflowing, and your fridge has seen better days, it might be time to clean house. Tidy up with this list from Nonnahs Driskill of Get Organized Already!

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a kitchen drawer packed with utensils is shownGraham Hughes/Shutterstock

Kitchen clutter, begone

Yes, it’s all too easy to have a cluttered kitchen. But it doesn’t have to be an inevitability. If you still have unnecessary these things in your kitchen—or, at the very least, a lot of them—here’s your sign from the universe to get rid of them (and why you should), according to Pasadena-based professional organizer Nonnahs Driskill. Speaking of professional organizers, here are some more things you’re keeping in your home that the pros would toss.

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Disposable plastic bags

There’s something to be said for reduce, reuse, recycle, but letting old grocery bags pile up until they’ve taken up an entire cupboard is a habit to end. “Everyone tells me they keep these bags for dog poop, but really they end up filling them with random objects and never finding them again” says Driskill. Instead of schlepping home tons of plastic, use a tote bag for your weekly trips to the store.

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Reusable shopping bags

Sure, reusable shopping bags are great—we recommended them in the previous tip—but too much of a good thing isn’t ideal either. “Most people own way more bags than they need,” says Driskill. Her advice? Store ten or fewer in the truck of your car instead of keeping them in the kitchen. Not only will you limit kitchen clutter, but you’ll also have a tote on hand for those last-minute market runs. Plus, find out the downside to reusable shopping bags you might not have thought of.

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Bottles of water

While you should still strive for eight glasses a day, you don’t need a case of individual water bottles to meet your goal. “Water bottles take up so much room and are a big waste of natural resources and money,” says Driskill. Instead, invest in a good filter and a reusable thermos you can fill up before you head out. Find out which 10 things in your bathroom you should throw out right now.

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To-go condiments

Just because you ordered delivery doesn’t mean you have to keep every last freebie thrown in. Wrapped fortune cookies, spare chopsticks, and extra ketchup packets aren’t meant to be saved; you’re always going to get more the next time you order.

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Sentimental coffee mugs

You might be the world’s best dad or need coffee first, but you don’t need a mug to declare every one of your character traits. “Most people don’t need more than six mugs, and yet a mug collection takes up the entire bottom shelf of the main cabinet in most kitchens,” says Driskill. Sip smart and waste less space. Here’s how to spot 11 signals that it’s time to declutter.

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Dull knives

You’re not an iron chef, and most meals you whip up in the kitchen won’t require more than one knife. “Most professional chefs get by with just three to five knives,” says Driskill. A paring knife for coring, peeling, and trimming, and a serrated knife for breads and meats usually does the trick. Check out these 16 things in your closet you should finally get rid of.

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Fancy kitchen gadgets

Unless you use it regularly, you probably don’t need that mango de-pitter or oversized quesadilla maker. “Again, consider professional chefs,” says Driskill. “They don’t use special tools for making margaritas, chopping garlic, or scrambling omelets.” Knives, forks, spoons, a whisk, and a spatula should do the trick. Find out all of the kitchen gadgets we specifically think are a waste of money.

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Recipes you’re dying to try

We all have good intentions, and a well-taken food photo can be quite the temptation. Still, that doesn’t mean you should keep every scrap of paper with a quiche, pie, or pasta recipe you intend to make. “If you tore it out of a magazine more than three months ago and you haven’t made it yet, you’re not going to—and that’s okay,” says Driskill. Learn about the 10 effortless things that clutter-free people do every day.

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With tons of recipes available online, the days of needing to keep mounds of hard covered cookbooks on hand is gone. While having a few around for inspiration is fine, keep your cookbook collection to a minimum. Also make sure they’re actually being used. “If you’ve owned a cookbook for over a year and haven’t made a single recipe, you probably never will,” says Driskill. Ditch it. By the way, here are some more ways you’ve been cleaning your kitchen wrong.

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All that stuff on your fridge

Be picky with what you post on the outside of your fridge. Consider it a VIP section for priority pieces only. “Save the refrigerator for daily reminders like current to-do lists, forms that need to be signed or addressed, or tickets to an upcoming show,” says Driskill. “The front of the fridge is such a large space, and when it is decluttered, the whole kitchen feels neater.” Hoping to declutter in the new year (or any time)? Here are 43 things to get rid of in the next 43 days.