It’s the holiday season, and your normally quiet kitchen is about to become a very busy place. Before you know it, friends and family will arrive carrying homemade dishes and sharing their contributions to the festive holiday feast.
Prepare your cooking and entertaining space for all those guests with these 10 simple steps to get your kitchen ready for the holidays.
1. Take an inventory of your pantry.
You don’t want to run out of sugar in the middle of baking cookies or find that you are short on stuffing mix when the interior of the turkey is still waiting to be filled. Now is the time to take an inventory of your pantry, so you can restock and keep the holiday essentials on hand.
2. Clear off your countertops.
Chances are you have a lot of stuff on your kitchen countertops, from that bread machine you used one time and forgot about to the waffle iron that has not made a waffle for months. Putting those single-use kitchen appliances away will clear vital counter space just in time for the holiday feast.
3. Set aside a space for guests’ holiday contributions.
Bringing a dish to share is an integral part of the holidays, and you need a safe and convenient place to store all that delicious goodness. Now that the counters have been cleared, you can dedicate that space to the expected influx of sides and desserts.
4. Hang the holiday decorations with care — and with space in mind.
You want your kitchen to look amazing for the holidays, but too much décor could undo your decluttering efforts. Focus on holiday decorations that can be hung up or otherwise kept out of the way — think string lights on the counters or a festive wreath or sign on the door.
5. Make sure the dishwasher is working properly.
When the holiday meal is over, your dishwasher will be working overtime, so do yourself a favor and check it out ahead of time. If there are any issues, you’ll still have time to fix this vital kitchen appliance before the holiday guests arrive.
6. Clean the oven and the microwave.
A clean oven is essential for the holidays, so set the cleaning cycle or grab your oven cleaner. While you’re at it, make sure to thoroughly clean the microwave — it will be seeing a lot of action during the holiday meal prep.
7. Disinfect and deodorize trash cans.
Your guests will need a place to throw their garbage, but a smelly trash can could taint those sweet holiday memories. Now is the time to empty the trash, clean the cans, and add a healthy dose of deodorizer.
8. Break out the good dishes and make sure there are enough of them.
A holiday feast is a great time to use your best dishes, so check the china and make sure it’s clean and ready to use. Be sure you have enough dishes, plates, and silverware for all your guests.
9. Set up a table for the kids.
If you’re hosting lots of kids at dinner, you might want to set up a special table just for the young ones. Think about where you can add an extra dining table, then rearrange the room to make it fit if necessary.
10. Top it off with a stylish centerpiece.
Now that the kitchen is sparkling and ready for the holidays, it’s time to think about the dining room table. A stylish centerpiece is the perfect topper for all your holiday efforts, and once it is in place, you’ll be ready for your guests to arrive.
The holiday season is a time of friends, family, and frivolity, but it’s also a time for lots of feasting — and potential hosting stress. Whether you have guests coming in from near or far, you will want to make sure your kitchen is ready for the biggest feast of the year. The tips listed above can help you whip your kitchen into holiday shape, so you can relax and enjoy this special time with your loved ones.