How to Organize a Kitchen Desk

Today, we’re sharing how to organize a kitchen desk!

So many people I know are on decluttering missions this year, are you?

I read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo a few years ago and it was a total game-changer.  I’ve used the techniques in that book to organize everything from the linen closets to the pantry to the cleaning cabinet.

In the past, we’ve mostly used the kitchen desk as a meal planning station.

But the busier we got, the more I would find myself stuffing receipts, mail, or odds and ends into the drawers instead of putting it all away.

I’m by nature a stacker, and for years, the paper clutter would be peeking out here, there and everywhere.

Here’s a little looksie at our old reality…

The worse part about it is that instead of carefully putting things away, I would stack things in the cabinet just to get it out of sight.

Way back in January 2014, I organized this space and it stayed like this for a while.

But a few years later, I found myself reverting back to my old stacking and stuffing ways.

Ready for a change, I really started thinking about how to give this space a purpose and how to organize a kitchen desk with efficiency.

This desk is used for meal planning, writing letters to loved ones, storing small appliance manuals, important house papers, receipts, and office supplies too.

Truthfully, everything was a big mess.  But it was also an easy beast to tame with just a little bit of effort!

Here’s a look at how to organize a kitchen desk and maintain it all year long…

Step One: Declutter

My first step was to declutter both the desk and the upper cabinets. It took a good portion of the afternoon to go through all the papers and receipts.

By the end of the day though, I had shredded enough paper to fill a 13-gallon trash bag!

It was nuts because I was literally holding on to grocery store receipts from 2011!

Step Two: Categorize & Organize by Pairing Like Items Together 

After I went through all the paper clutter, I moved onto the writing instruments.

When is the last time you looked to see if your pens and pencils were still in working order?

It had been a while for me too!

Step Three: Contain & Label

Once I organized and categorized all the items, I began the search for the most efficient containers.

This includes boxes, baskets, bins, small drawers, mason jars, trays, or utensil holders.

I’ve found in the past that if I organize everything into piles by category first, it cuts down on making multiple trips to the store for baskets and bins.

That way, you don’t overbuy either because you know exactly how much you have of each item.

The banker style boxes are sturdy enough to hold important papers and cookbooks.

I picked these vegetable baskets up at a local thrift store for less than $1 each and painted them in Valspar’s Silver Leaf.

I have assorted cards and stationery supplies in one basket and loose receipts in another.

Each month I go through the receipts and file them in envelopes in the box below so things aren’t bananas come tax season ?

I totally believe organizing can be both pretty and practical.

Case in point, our pen situation.

We’re always looking for pens, pencils, and markers. So, I placed them in individual thrifted ironstone containers and on a silver tray to make them easily accessible.

This entire container storage solution was less than $5.

To organize the smaller office supplies, I placed them in glass mason jars and labeled the lids using matte shelf liner paper and PicMonkey.

While glass might not be a good solution if you have littles using this kitchen desk for schoolwork, dollar stores almost always have a budget-friendly plastic or acrylic solution.

The drawers in the desk also house our stamps, envelopes, larger office supplies, and bank supplies.

Using a basic wooden kitchen utensil caddy or an expandable drawer organizer will help you keep the desk drawer tidy.

Step Four: Maintain

Once you have a solid organization plan in place, it should be fairly easy to maintain.

Here’s another look at how to organize a kitchen desk and cabinets before…

and after…

Learning how to organize a kitchen desk doesn’t have to be complicated or even expensive.

It just needs to be efficient and meet your needs!

I know a lot of us are looking to make the spaces in our home as user friendly as possible.

Especially now, that we all have multiple family members working and learning from home.

So, before you start searching for organizing essentials, think about how you really plan to use the space and what changes you need to make in order for it to be purpose-filled.

Small changes really do make a big impact! Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

A Few Other Home Organization Posts You Might Enjoy:

Many blessings,


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  1. I really appreciate it, Colleen, thank you! It feels so good to have things neat and tidy. I’m so thankful you started this series for us! Hugs, CoCo

  2. Thanks so much ladies! I’m definitely on a decluttering mission. It does feel so good to have things neat and tidy. I can’t wait to move on to other rooms in the house. Hugs, CoCo

  3. Looks awesome, CoCo! Boy, do I need to do this; my kitchen desk is one big pile right now! Probably about time:( Great tips!

    1. Thank you so much. Lora! We’re always looking for easy ways to make the spaces in our home more efficient. Especially now that we’re working from home nearly every day. The clutter piles up so much easier now than it ever did before 🙂 Sending you hugs for a happy weekend, CoCo

  4. Great post! Love the ideas and this space! The white desk with the shiny black top is amazing as is your old typewriter! So fun! I also loved your other post that you linked up but I couldn’t leave a comment about 9 quick and easy ways to find fall decorating inspiration. Thanks so much for linking up to centerpiece Wednesday Linky Party on my blog!

    1. Such sweet compliments, Karin, thank you so much! It’s been so much fun to follow along on all of your adventures and study your gorgeous tablescapes too. It always looks like you guys are having the best time. Hope your weekend was a happy one, CoCo

  5. I love how you styled your desk and organized the cabinet!! It’s so beautiful! You always inspire me!

    1. You are too sweet, Kristin, I feel the same way about you all the time! Sending you hugs for a happy week, CoCo

    1. Thank you bunches, Michelle! I’m all about trying to organize as many things as possible for a no-fuss way of life 🙂 Sending you hugs, CoCo

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