Behind Closed Doors

posted by Andrea | 07/24/2013

kitchen cabinets

Question: What’s behind your kitchen cabinet doors? And no, I don’t mean the actual stuff on the shelves. I’m literally referring to the back side of your cabinet doors.

If you answered “nothing”, my goal is to change that by the end of this post!

The inside of your cabinet doors is prime real estate for all sorts of goodies — and who can really afford to waste space in the kitchen?

That’s what I thought :)

The inside of several of our kitchen cabinets are lined with papers, sticky notes, grocery lists, to-do’s, contact information, take-out menus, etc. etc. all easily accessible at any given moment, but all completely out of site, off the counters, and out of the way.

It’s glorious!

Baking Cheat Sheet:

The inside of our upper corner cabinet has a mess of papers taped up inside — all of which help me when I can’t remember something while I’m baking.

Some note the different conversion rates (Celsius – Fahrenheit, cups-ounces, etc. etc.) Some remind me of proper cooking temperatures for different meats, candies, etc. Some list common substitutions and a whole bunch of other information I use on a regular basis but haven’t taken the time to fully memorize yet.

baking cheat sheet

Grocery Central:

I use the inside of our large pantry cabinet to hold 2 little dry-erase “tablets” — one for our grocery list and another for our weekly menu plan. We got these little tablets in a packet of junk mail trying to get Dave and I to sign up for something (I don’t remember what). I almost threw the whole thing away, but then saved these little sleeves for our grocery list and menu plan.

Any time I think of something we need to buy or start running low on an ingredient while I’m cooking, I jot it down on our grocery list. This makes it super easy to quickly make my finalized grocery list each Sunday afternoon.

I also have one other plain pad of paper for other things I might need to buy that I can’t get from the grocery store. This way, if I’m heading out to run errands, I simply grab the paper with my list of things to buy and if I see any of them at good prices, I know to buy them.

grocery lists

Contact information:

Inside another cabinet, we have a whole bunch of contact information for people, businesses, restaurants, and more.

Dave and I aren’t necessarily the best at remembering names of people we’ve met — it’s awful and we both wish we were better at remembering, but we’re not. So to compensate for this, we drew up a mini map of our neighborhood and marked out the names of all our neighbors and where they live. This way, if (when) we forget, we can just open our cabinet door and look it up again — because seriously, after 2.5 years, we really can’t keep asking for name refreshers :)

We also keep business cards of people we might need to call (the guy who helped us with our roof, the guy who changes the oil in our car, etc. etc) We don’t necessarily need to program these numbers into our phone (because we often can’t remember their name to search for them anyway!) but we still want their numbers handy for the 1 or 2 times a year we might need to quickly get a hold of them.

Important information:

This isn’t something we’ve implemented yet, but once our kids start getting older and/or once we have more babysitters, we’ll probably create an “important information” zone on the back of a cabinet door with emergency phone numbers and other information.

information

Laundry Cheat Sheet:

On the inside of one of the cabinets in our laundry room, I have a stain chart that details how to remove different types of stains from different types of fabrics. It’s so handy, but so out of the way — and I never have to worry about it getting wet or ruined!

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If you’re not using the inside surfaces of your kitchen (or laundry room) cabinet doors, you’re “wasting” a whole bunch of prime real estate. Depending on the type of cabinets you have, anything that’s somewhat flat and relatively light-weight could work for hanging on the inside of a cabinet door.

I know plenty of people who put white boards, magnetic boards, spice racks, and more all on the inside of their cabinet doors.

And while I realize my “presentation” of information isn’t amazing or Pinterest worthy, it still works fabulously for us and it allows us to have all kinds of information at our fingertips — but NOT on our counters!

Oh, and if you’d like to see how I organize the insides of my cabinets, read this post.

How do you use the inside of your cabinet doors?

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44 comments

  1. Steph

    07/24/2013

    Like you I use the inside of a jelly cabinet for important forms (like school lists that we won’t need until late August) and pin our summer “fun list”. While you probably are not a big fan of fridge magnets what I have discovered is by using an acrylic 8×10 magnetic picture frame I can put up my favorite selection of artwork that my son brings home (he is 11 now and we have done this since kindergarten) and on the back side I keep important numbers for times when we have sitters, I then change it out from time to time-it is a great way to showcase artwork without going overboard and a great conversation starter for the grandparents.

    For business cards I used to keep a sheet of business cards protectors inside the cabinet and simply slip them in but now I just enter them into my smartphone for future use.

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  2. shelly

    07/25/2013

    The most important thing I have up inside one of my cabinet doors is a sheet with instructions and illustrations on how to administer infant CPR (which we received when my husband and I took an infant CPR class). When we had our first kiddo, I made copies for both of the grandparents as well to put up on the inside of one of their kitchen cabinet doors. So anytime I have a babysitter, I can open the cabinet door and show her it’s right there :) (I also have a sheet for adult CPR….you can never be too careful!)

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  3. shelly

    07/25/2013

    Another great idea I’ve seen is to use a 3M command hook (won’t leave behind any damage :) on the back of a cabinet door to hang up bibs. I’ll definitely be doing this!!

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  4. Cathy

    07/25/2013

    I also do this especially in the laundry room because I hate tags!!!! You know those annoying black ones that they put on white shirts?!?!?!? ugh. so I take them out and tape them to the inside of my laundry cupboard with 1/2 masking tape so I can write on them what article of clothing it belongs to, and I will know the washing and drying instructions. My kitchen cabinets are the same as yours lol Love this!!!

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  5. Jennifer

    07/26/2013

    Some great ideas here! I have a wipe board in my cabinet closest to the frige so I can write down leftovers that go in the frige. It has really helped me remember what’s in there and needs to get eaten or used in a new dish. I jot down ideas for uses for the leftovers, too. Ex. I recently made a huge batch of wild rice for a dinner side. I put away 1c and wrote it down with take note to make rice cakes soon. I hope this came out without too many errors. There is a pop up in the middle of the screen I can’t see around.

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  6. Kim

    08/05/2013

    I have a dry erase board for shopping lists as well. I snap a photo of it on my smartphone and use the picture as my list in the store.

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