Did you know we are spending more time entertaining in the kitchen? According to IKEA research, 61% of Aussies cook two to three times a week for friends and family, meaning a functional kitchen solution is becoming increasingly important. With smart storage and clever features, kitchen frustrations can be avoided and more time can be spent enjoying this increasingly social area of the home.
According to insights from IKEA, lack of storage is one of the biggest frustrations people have in the kitchen. In fact the recent Life at Home report from IKEA, revealed that almost a quarter of people (24%) admitted to purchasing food only to discover they already have it in the fridge. Poor kitchen organisation also means you spend more time looking for the food and less time cooking it.
Someone who knows all about kitchen frustrations is Range Manager for Kitchens at IKEA Global, Gerry Dufresne. Gerry has visited thousands of homes all over the world and knows what the biggest the time wasters in the kitchen are and, more importantly, he knows how to avoid them.
Now, Gerry and the design team at IKEA are unveiling the biggest range change in IKEA Australia’s history, the new kitchen range METOD. With thousands of combinations and endless possibilities, this clever new design promises to change the way Aussies use their kitchens forever.
Here are Gerry’s top five tips to save you time in the kitchen:
1. A functional layout
How often do you find yourself jumping back and forth around the kitchen going from the fridge, to the sink, to the oven? A poor layout can really slow you down.
When designing a kitchen always think of the ‘triangle’ principle, your sink, stove and fridge should be laid out in a triangle. This simple layout trick will make your kitchen life easier.
Depending on the design of your kitchen, a triangle isn’t always possible but with a versatile solution like METOD, with it’s revolutionary set of measurements, you can make the most out of the space you have and design a kitchen ‘triangle’ to suit your needs.
A kitchen island can also help save time in the kitchen. As well as offering a place to sit and socialise, an island will reduce kitchen ‘travel’ time, you can do all your prep in one spot and keep everything where you need it.
The trick to placing the perfect island is to make sure you leave at least 120cm between the island and your counter but nowadays there are endless island possibilities, so you can find one to suit your space. The above example is simply a base cabinet, a tabletop and a trestle and fits perfectly in the kitchen.
2. Space that you can see
Poor visibility is a common time waster in the kitchen, which is why the ‘open cupboard’ trend is gaining popularity in Aussie kitchens. With crockery and utensil designs becoming as pretty as they are practical, why not take down the doors and show them off?
It’s a clever kitchen solution; not only will open cupboards help create kitchen art, it also means everything you need is right in front of you.
While some people are scared to embrace the ‘open cupboard’ movement, you can always combine closed cabinets with open spaces to show off the fun stuff and hide the rest.
Another way you can save time and increase visibility is to increase lighting and not just in your kitchen but in the cupboards too. A good integrated lighting system can make searching the back of the cupboard a lot quicker. Realising the importance of good lighting in kitchen cupboards and drawers, IKEA has integrated LED lights in its newest kitchen range, METOD.
3. Clever storage solutions
The average kitchen has to store a lot of stuff, which means things easily get buried and lost and you waste time digging them up.
Investing in purpose built interior organisers will allow you to squeeze the most out of every square inch of drawer and cabinet space. This simple trick will create a kitchen where everything is easy to find and accessible, saving you time spent in the kitchen.
You can also store bigger items in high drawers and invest in some separators; it’ll even help you store frying pans and tricky saucepan lids. Cabinet carousels are also great for storing bulky items and you won’t have to pull everything out just to get something from the back.
4. Food storage and waste
From our home visits we know lack of food storage is one of the biggest frustrations people have in the kitchen and unfortunately, most homes don’t allow for a separate pantry, but you can get around it.
Make the most of your drawers by using them for dry food storage. Drawers are perfect for those little jars, and, let’s face it, if you keep all you herbs and spices in one spot, meal preparation will become much quicker.
Aussies also spend a lot of time sorting through their waste and putting it in allocated areas. The general waste bin might be in one place and the recycling and food waste bins in another. Waste organisers, like the one below, mean the time spent in the kitchen doesn’t have to be rubbish.
5. Clever cooking
The recent Life at Home report from IKEA revealed that the majority (62%) of Sydney–siders cook every day, or every other day, during the week. Even though we are keen cooks, many don’t realise they’re spending more time than they need to slaving over a hot stove.
Induction hobs are among the most time, and energy, efficient cooking appliance, as they match the heat output to the size of your cookware. Induction hobs transfer heat directly to the pot or pan, adding both speed and precision to your cooking, so you spend less time cooking and more time eating.