The single most important element determining the speed and ease of cooking happens long before you chop a carrot or preheat an oven. It is the basic layout of your kitchen.
Setting up an efficient kitchen layout
Whether you're starting from scratch or working with an existing layout, arrange your kitchen for a smooth flow of work from storage areas to preparation areas to cooking areas to cleaning areas. Start with a plan on paper. Draw walls, doors and windows to scale on a piece of graph paper. Make paper or cardboard cutouts to scale of all appliances. Use the cutouts to determine the best arrangement of work areas in your space. Depending on room size and shape, choose a U-shape, L-shape, or open galley layout.
Forming a work triangle
Whatever shape you settle on, try to link the refrigerator, sink, and stove in a triangle, which minimizes walking and eliminates the need to cross one work area to get to another. If possible, keep the total distance between storage, cooking, and cleaning areas to no more than 23 feet. When planning a work triangle, consider how people will walk through the kitchen. Avoid planning a walking path that crosses through the triangle, especially the space between the stove and sink.