Day 4 - Baking Ingredients {Net Zero Decluttering Challenge} | From Overwhelmed to Organized: Day 4 - Baking Ingredients {Net Zero Decluttering Challenge}

Friday, December 4, 2015

Day 4 - Baking Ingredients {Net Zero Decluttering Challenge}

Have you ever felt overwhelmed during the month of December with all the stuff that enters your home? The trick I've found helps me is to declutter throughout the month. Will you join me in the Net Zero Decluttering Challenge?

Each day this month I'll share some decluttering tips and ideas so you can end the month with the same number of items in your home (or maybe even less!) than what you started the month with.

Today I'm sharing tips on decluttering your baking ingredients.

Today's Suggested Decluttering Task

Holiday baking can be a lot of fun and everyone loves the end results of your efforts!  But it can also be stressful if you can't find what you need or if you don't have enough of a particular ingredient.

To make sure you enjoy the holiday baking process, spend a few minutes decluttering your baking ingredients today.  You'll know what you have, and that everything in your cupboards is good, and you won't end up buying ingredients only to find out later that you had extra hiding in the back of your cupboards.

Here are a few tips to help you declutter your baking ingredients:
  • Toss anything that has expired
  • Throw away any ingredients that are no longer fresh (nothing worse than going to bake cookies and finding out your brown sugar is hard as a rock!)
  • Get rid of items that look old or that you know you haven't used for quite awhile (if they have a layer of dust on them you can be pretty sure you haven't used them in awhile)
  • Give away ingredients that are still good but that you know you won't use again (maybe something you bought for a specific recipe that your family didn't enjoy)
  • My usual motto if you're not sure about something is "If in doubt, throw it out!" and it definitely applies where you're talking about baking ingredients that you're going to use in treats or gifts for other people.  

Decluttering these thing should create some space in your baking cabinet and make it easier to find what you need during a baking marathon!

If you have some items that are close to expiring (or that have expired but you feel they're still fine for baking something for your own family), make a note of those so you can use them up soon (and so that you don't use them for a treat you're planning to give to someone or bring to a Christmas party. 

While you're going through your ingredients, take stock of what you will need to buy before doing your holiday baking.  Think about the recipes you plan to make and how much of each ingredient will be needed.  That way you won't need to rush out to the grocery store right when you're ready to start baking your favourite holiday recipe (which means less stress and more time for doing what you love).  Just don't overstock your cabinet with random ingredients just in case... you'll only end up with ingredient clutter in your cabinet the rest of the year!  

Decluttering My Baking Ingredients 

We haven't pulled out our Christmas bins yet so I haven't decluttered my Christmas decorations or Christmas cards yet, but I did take a few minutes today to go through my baking ingredients today.  I didn't think I'd find much to declutter, but I was surprised to find several things that had expiry dates of more than a year or two!  

Here's a before shot of my baking ingredients cupboard:

It had become a little disorganized so while I was going through my baking ingredients I took a few minutes to tidy it back up.

That's better :) 

And here's what I decluttered:

We don't bake from scratch very often (Christmas is one of the few times we do!) so ingredients can get old without it feeling like we've had them for a long time.  I have made a point of trying to use up some older ingredients the last few years, but there were still some that I'd kept, thinking maybe I'd bake from scratch more often.  Um yeah... that didn't happen.  And if I'm being honest, it probably won't happen in the near future.  So I'm decluttering a bunch of these ingredients.  

These 10 packages or containers of expired baking ingredients put me at -10 in the #NetZeroClutter challenge! I don't normally consider consumable items like food to be "clutter" but since these have been in my baking cabinet for several years without being consumed... I think they count.

And here's the list I quickly made of things I want to use up this month.  

A few things are close to their expiry dates and others have already expired but I think they'd still be OK for our family.  If I don't use these up this month, I'll toss them in January! 

I also added a few things to our weekly grocery list that we were either running low on or that I just decluttered.  We'll be all set for our holiday baking then :)

What's Next For You?

Take some time today to declutter your baking ingredients. Or anything you'd like to declutter!  Take some pictures and share your progress on social media using the hashtag #NetZeroClutter.  Let me know how you're doing in the challenge so I can cheer you on!

Sign up to receive my blog posts by email so you get each day's post in your email inbox every morning.  You can unsubscribe after the challenge is over if you don't want to continue receiving my blog posts by email.

I'd also love for you to join our 365 Items in 365 Days Facebook group as you do this challenge!  You'll be able to share with others what you're decluttering and feel encouraged and inspired by everyone else who is also decluttering!

If you'd like more decluttering ideas, you can check out my Decluttering/Purging Tips & Ideas board on Pinterest.

So that's the Net Zero Decluttering Challenge!  I'm so excited to do this myself and to have you join me.  I can't wait to hear all the stories of how much more you're enjoying your holidays because you're not overwhelmed by all the stuff in your home!

How many baking ingredients did you declutter? What holiday baking are you planning to do this year?

Happy organizing decluttering!

I link up at these great parties - Check them out!

Here are all the posts in this challenge in case you missed any or want to share some with your friends or family!