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Kitchen Packing: How to Prepare, Pack, & Unpack Your Kitchen Like A Professional

Packing a kitchen is one of the trickiest parts of moving. The kitchen is one of the last spaces that you need to be functional in your old home, but on the flip side one of the first that you need to be functional in your new home. That makes the timing of packing, moving, and unpacking a kitchen difficult to get just right.

Packing your Kitchen For Your Move
How to Pack Your Kitchen

In addition to there just being a whole lot of stuff that has to get packed up, many of the items are irregularly shaped and/or fragile, plus there tends to be an overwhelming amount of odds and ends that can throw off even the most organised of packers. Heading in to your kitchen without a plan is up there with the major moving mistakes, but with a bit of foresight and ingenuity you can simplify the kitchen packing process and tackle it like a professional. Here’s how to pack a kitchen without losing your mind.

Heading in to your kitchen without a plan is up there with the major moving mistakes.

Use this guide so you’ll be ready to prepare, pack, and unpack your kitchen like a professional. In this guide, we’ll walk you through all the following steps.

Here is our 5 Step guide to packing:

Step One: Get Organised

Step Two: Gather Your Materials

Step Three: Figure Out What Essentials You'll Need

Step Four: Start somewhere, anywhere

Step Five: Get Your New Kitchen Ready To Move In

Kitchen Packing Advice
C2C Movers Step-By-Step Guide

Step One: Get organised

Just as you would for every other room in your home, go through and pull out the items you no longer want or need before starting to pack. Moving is the best time to edit down your belongings and lighten your load, so take a moment to separate out the things that don’t serve a purpose for you. This can be a particularly difficult thing to do in the kitchen, since there’s always that voice saying that even though you’ve never used that crème brulee set before, you might want to use it someday. But if you’ve had it for more than a year and you’ve never even taken it out of the box, chances are you’re not going to.

Kitchen supplies that are in good condition can be donated to friends and family or to a local charity-based secondhand shop like Goodwill. You can also inquire with local food banks or soup kitchens to see if they’d like them.

Step Two: Gather your materials

To pack a kitchen, you’ll need heavy duty boxes in a variety of sizes, as well as packing paper, packing tape, and labeling markers. To make things easier on yourself, you may also want to purchase specialty dividers specifically designed for packing and stacking difficult items like stemware. Pick up some plastic wrap, too (the kind you would use to wrap up leftovers is just fine), which is helpful for keeping stacked items together and preventing them from shifting around.

A good rule of thumb when it comes to acquiring packing supplies for the kitchen is that you’ll probably need more than you think. For a family-sized kitchen, plan on about five small boxes, ten medium boxes, five large boxes, three extra large boxes, and about three rolls of packing paper. You may need to go back to the packing supplier or your mover, but this is a good amount of supplies to get started with.

Step Three: Figure out what essentials you’ll need

You don’t want to pack up your whole kitchen only to realize you didn’t leave yourself any forks for dinner that night. Set aside (or at least make a mental note) of the essential kitchen items that you’ll want to keep on hand right before and right after your move. Each member of your family will need a plate, cup, and a set of flatware, and you should keep out a couple bowls, too. Make sure to also leave yourself a dish towel, dish soap, a sponge (just toss it when you’re moving out), and any appliances you’ll need handy while you pack, such as your coffee maker. These can all be packed separately in a kitchen essentials box on the day that you leave.

Step Four: Start somewhere, anywhere

Each cabinet and drawer in the kitchen presents its own unique difficulties when it comes to packing, but they all have to get done, so just pick one and get started. Clear off an area of your countertop to spread out your packing paper, and get to work.

For pots and pans:

Use a large or medium box, and stack pots and pans with the smaller ones nestled into the larger ones and a small piece of packing paper between them. Make sure to add support around your pots and pans by stuffing paper or dish towels into openings, which will keep them from moving around in transit. Glass lids should be wrapped in packing paper and placed around the pots and pans or in a separate box.

For glasses and stemware:

Your best bet here is to use specialty dividers that fit into standard boxes. Even though your glassware is better protected in dividers than out of them, you’ll still want to wrap each item in packing paper. Don’t stack anything on top of your glassware, even if there’s room in the box. Glass is too fragile to support a lot of additional weight.

For plates and bowls:

Stack plates and bowls for easy packing. If they’re breakable materials, wrap each item before stacking; otherwise, you can just put a piece of packing paper in between them. Keep stacks together by wrapping them tightly in plastic wrap. Use the space around your plates and bowls to pack odds and ends.

For flatware and serving utensils:

For the easiest way to pack flatware, simply use plastic wrap to wrap around the tray and then place it flat inside a box. You can then add additional serving utensils on top, either loose or wrapped in a bit of packing paper (if they’re delicate).

For knives:

Roll each knife in a full sheet of packing paper and then wrap a dish towel around them and secure the whole thing with a rubber band. Pack knives on their side—never facing up.