How to pack a kitchen for moving
The mere thought of packing ALL your kitchen items for moving may be quite overwhelming… Don’t be quick to give up though – when there is a will, there is a way.


  • Packing your kitchen for moving can be trickier than you think.
  • Kitchens are full of heavy, awkwardly shaped, and fragile items, many of which are quite expensive.
  • Packing kitchen items safely for moving is a real challenge that will take up a lot of your time and energy.
  • This appetizing guide will show you the best way to pack a kitchen for moving.

Whether you truly enjoy the art of cooking and spend many hours in the kitchen preparing culinary masterpieces, or prefer ready-to-cook meals that take no more than 30 minutes to prepare, the savory smell of home-made food coming from the kitchen is certain to attract the attention of all your family members and to prompt a family gathering around the dining table.

Without a doubt, the kitchen is the busiest, most appealing, and most delicious room in the home – the epicenter of family life. A functional kitchen is a symbol of a peaceful and happy home, a sign that all is the way it should be.

So, when moving to a new house, setting up the kitchen is one of the most crucial steps required to resume a normal daily routine and start feeling at home again.

To be able to do so in a quick and efficient manner, however, you need to have all your kitchen items delivered to your new place intact and well organized in properly labeled moving boxes.

This can only be achieved if you know how to pack your kitchen for moving the right way.

The kitchen is probably the trickiest room in the house when it comes to packing.

It is full of heavy, awkwardly shaped, and fragile items, many of which are quite expensive. Packing them safely for moving is a real challenge that will take up a lot of your time and energy.

To manage on time and avoid unnecessary mistakes, you need to start packing up your kitchen well ahead of Moving day and follow a practical kitchen packing checklist:

Provide Suitable Kitchen Packing Supplies

You will need a variety of quality packing materials to ensure the safety of your kitchen items during the moving process.

Make sure you have sufficient amounts of the necessary packing supplies before you get down to work, as skimping on proper packing is out of the question when it comes to delicate kitchenware but rushing into the stores for extra supplies in the last minute will cost you dearly.

You are going to need:

  • Kitchen packing boxes – about 15-20 strong, medium-sized moving boxes for items such as small appliances, pots and pans, cutlery, and various other cooking utensils, as well as several dish barrels for your breakables and a few cell kits of appropriate sizes for packing glasses, stemware, and bottles (if you’d rather not buy expensive specialty boxes, at least get hold of some small and sturdy boxes that can provide good enough protection for your fragile kitchen items);
  • Packing paper – you’ll need plenty of clean paper to wrap your delicate kitchen items, provide cushioning between individual pieces and layers, and fill the remaining empty spaces in the boxes. You can use old newspapers and/or shredded paper for cushioning, of course, just make sure your items are well wrapped in unprinted paper first (ink can stain the delicate surfaces of your plates, glasses, etc.);
  • Bubble wrap – bubble wrap will not only provide excellent padding and protection to your breakables but will also come in very handy for wrapping protruding furniture parts (chair legs and table legs, handles, etc.) and other awkwardly shaped pieces. Purchase it in bulk to get a better deal on the final cost;
  • Moving blankets – you can use any old blankets, curtains, bed linen, or large towels you have in your home instead of professional moving blankets, just be careful to safely wrap large kitchen appliances and furniture in soft fabrics to prevent scratching, denting, and other damage during the moving procedures;
  • Quality packing tape – you’ll need lots of sealing tape to reinforce the moving boxes and to seal them properly, as well as to hold wrapping materials in place, so make sure you have at least 5-6 rolls of quality sealing tape. A packing tape dispenser will also come in very handy;
  • Permanent markers – you will certainly want to mark your kitchen packing boxes as FRAGILE and write handling instructions (THIS SIDE UP, HANDLE WITH CARE), etc., so don’t forget to supply some permanent markers as well.

Once you have supplied all the required packing materials, you need to sort out and organize the numerous items in your kitchen. Only then can you begin the actual packing process.

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Organize Your Kitchen Items

It's very importnat to organize your kitchen items well.
Sorted by type, sorted by material, sorted by purpose, sorted by frequency of use…

Moving to a new home is a good opportunity to get rid of unwanted, useless, duplicate, outdated, worn out, or damaged items that have been stored away and completely forgotten.

Look into every drawer and every cabinet, above the shelves and under the sink, in every dark corner and small nook in your kitchen, and sort out your belongings.

The thing is that sorting out your kitchen odds and ends may take you a bit more time than you have expected.

Step 1. Put aside any items you haven’t used in over a year

Do the same for all the things you don’t intend to use in your new place simply because they aren’t practical or don’t fit the available space, you want to replace them with newer models or don’t like them anymore, etc.

Throw out the ones that are damaged or too worn out to be used again and decide what to do with those that are still in good condition. You can sell them online or at a garage sale to pocket some extra money, donate them to charity, or give them away to friends

How to Get Rid of Unwanted Items When Moving

Step 2. Set aside the items you will need soon

This is all the stuff you’re going to need during the last couple of days in your old home and the first couple of days in your new residence.

Such items – a multi-purpose pot, a set of silverware for each family member, several plates and glasses, towels, basic cleaning supplies, etc. – should be the last ones you will pack before your move and should go into your open-first box;

Step 3. Start packing the items you won’t need before Moving day

Anything you use very rarely or only on special occasions – such as cake plates, condiment dishes, crystal glasses, ice-cream cups, cookie cutters, barbecue tongs, spatulas, pie pans, etc.), as well as small appliances you don’t use on a daily basis and all the extra dishes, dishtowels, food storage containers, and other similar items you keep in your kitchen, should be packed well in advance to avoid hectic last-minute packing that will most likely result in severe mistakes and lots of headaches.

What to Pack When – Packing Timeline for Moving

Step 4. Don’t pack any hazardous items

Make sure no hazardous materials (cleaning products that contain harmful chemicals, fuel for kitchen appliances, etc.), perishable food, or other non-allowable kitchen items have been packed with the rest of your belongings.

Step 5. Sort out your food

You need to use up all your perishable food supplies before your move.

If you can’t consume all your food, consider donating it to shelters, food banks, and other appropriate establishments.

Canned goods, spices, unopened food packages, bottles of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, exotic sauces, etc. can be packed and moved to your new home, but it may not be worth the money and the effort required to relocate them.

Such items are quite heavy, so they will increase the total weight of your shipment and respectively – your final moving costs.

Besides, you need to pack and handle them with great care, as the bottles may easily crack and/or leak, the food packages may burst open, etc.

What to Do With Food When Moving

How To Pack Kitchen Items

Packing a kitchen for moving has its own specifics and you need to follow several simple yet fundamental rules to make sure that none of your kitchen items will be damaged in the process:

Step 1. Prepare the boxes

Packing kitchen boxes requires a lot of care.
How to pack kitchen items? With utmost care.

Kitchen items are mostly heavy, so you will need sturdy and reliable packing containers.

Reinforce the bottoms and the corners of all the cardboard boxes you intend to use for packing kitchen items with quality packing tape to prevent them from breaking open during transit.

Don’t forget to put several sheets of corrugated packing paper, a soft towel, or any other appropriate cushioning layers on the bottom of each box before packing kitchenware in it.

Step 2. Make sure each item for packing is clean and dry

This is particularly important when packing kitchen appliances as even small amounts of moisture can cause considerable damage to the sensitive mechanisms.

If your items stay for a week or so in the moving truck, or if they’re put into temporary storage, any remaining water drops, stains, or spots may result in mold growth.

Step 3. Put the heaviest items on the bottom

This is a no-brainer but keep in mind that even very small kitchen utensils may be quite heavy, so they shouldn’t be put on top of larger but more delicate items.

Step 4. Wrap breakables individually

It requires a lot of effort to warp every single glass, plate, vase, canister, bottle, etc. you own separately but that’s the only way to ensure their safety during transportation.

Step 5. Provide plenty of padding between the items in a box

You can use crushed paper, bubble wrap, or packing peanuts, as well as dish towels, oven mitts, and other similar items for padding – even sponges and certain pantry items can serve as excellent cushioning materials in your moving boxes.

Step 6. Don’t make the boxes too heavy

the more items you can accommodate in one box, the fewer moving containers you’re going to need.

This tempting idea, however, may result in great trouble – if you make a box too heavy it will be very difficult to carry around.

Besides, it may break under its own weight or may damage other items it is stacked on top of in the moving truck.

Step 7. Label the boxes properly

The words KITCHEN or FRAGILE on top of a moving box will not be of much use when you are looking for your coffee maker or for your salad bowl after arriving in your new home.

Be more specific when labeling your boxes to speed up the unpacking process and organize your new kitchen more easily.

The above must-follow tips for packing up a kitchen, however, are not enough to ensure the successful outcome of your kitchen packing endeavor. What you need are some specific guidelines on how to properly pack individual kitchen items.

Packing Kitchen Cupboards

You are certain to spend hours on end just sorting through the enormous number of miscellaneous items contained in your cupboard shelves and drawers.

Organizing and packing the cupboard is definitely the most troublesome task you’re going to be faced with while packing your kitchen, so you are strongly advised to get it done first.

Start with the messiest drawers (the “junk drawers”) and work your way towards the neatly arranged dessert plates, glass ramekins, etc.

Packing dishware safely should be your primary concern when packing your kitchen.
One minute per plate? Two minutes per glass? Packing kitchen breakables requires lots of time and attention.

Try to resist the temptation to just throw all your odds and ends in a box – you may be able to sort all this stuff out when you get in your new home, but getting rid of any unwanted items prior to your move is worth the effort (as already explained above).

Besides, unpacking and arranging your new kitchen will be so much simpler if your items arrive perfectly organized by type and frequency of use.

You will be able to easily find anything you need right away and you will know that a box labeled “Kitchen: cutlery and essential cooking utensils” should be unpacked with priority, while the one that says “Kitchen: cookie sheets and pie pans”, for example, can wait until later.

How to Move a China Cabinet

Packing Kitchen Dishes

Plates and other chinaware are best packed in dish barrels:

  • Line the bottom of the box with bubble wrap, dish towels, or packing paper;
  • Wrap each plate in a layer or two of clean and soft packing paper (alternatively, you can use a paper plate between every two china plates);
  • Set one plate on top of the other, until you get a set of four or five plates nested in one another;
  • Wrap the whole nested set in one more layer of wrapping and tape the whole bunch together;
  • Always stack your plates on end – packing them flat may cause the ones on the bottom to crack under the weight of the above plates;
  • Lay down a protective layer over the items before shutting the box close.

How to Pack Plates for Moving: 5 Flatware Packing Steps

Packing Kitchen Glasses

For maximum safety, you’re advised to use cell-divided boxes to pack your wine glasses and other stemware.

  • Stuff glasses with crumpled packing paper or some clean and soft fabric pieces, then wrap the stems with bubble wrap, wrap the entire glass in packing paper, and use sealing tape to hold the wrapping securely in place;
  • Arrange your glasses in the moving box upright, with their mouths facing downwards;
  • Place a protective layer before starting the second row (if the space allows a second row, that is) when you’re done with the first row;
  • Fill in any remaining room inside the box with crumpled paper or any other appropriate cushioning material to prevent shifting during transit;
  • Use plenty of padding between the uppermost glasses and the lid of the container, seal the box securely, and label it on three sides FRAGILE.

How to Pack Glassware for Moving

Packing Kitchen Cutlery

Packing kitchen utensils and silverware is easier when they are sorted by type and size.

So, wrap sets of six to eight forks or spoons of the same length together in a sheet of bubble wrap or packing paper, tape the bunch tightly, place it in a small sturdy box, and repeat the process until all your silverware is neatly packed.

Be extra careful when packing kitchen knives – make sure their cutting parts face in one direction and use extra layers of wrapping materials to pack them safely.

Oddly shaped utensils (such as spatulas and ladles), as well as utensils you possess only one piece of (meat mallets or barbecue tongs, for example), should be wrapped individually.

How to Pack Knives for Moving: Don’t Cut Yourself!

Packing Pots and Pans

Pack your kitchen items prperly to keep them in excellent condition during your move.
Use all your resourcefulness and skills to keep your kitchen items in perfect condition during the arduous moving process.

You will need bigger boxes for your pots and pans.

The good news is they’re not as delicate as your dishware, so keeping them intact is easier.

Place the largest ones on the bottom of a well-cushioned box and stack up the smaller pots and pans on top.

If possible, use the nesting technique – place a sheet of packing paper in a large pot (or pan), then put a smaller one inside, and so on.

Wrap them together in some appropriate cushioning material for extra safety.

If any of your pots or pans have glass lids, wrap them separately in a protective layer of bubble wrap or packing paper before putting them in the corresponding boxes.

Packing Small Kitchen Appliances

Mixers, blenders, toasters, coffee makers, and any other small kitchen appliances you own are best packed in their original boxes.

If you don’t keep them, use sturdy boxes (strong enough to support the weight of your items) of appropriate sizes instead and pack only one appliance in a box.

Make sure your kitchen appliances are completely clean and dry, take any detachable parts apart, and pack each component separately (being extra careful with the fragile ones).

Place the heavier pieces in the box first. Don’t forget to fill up the remaining space between the components with crumpled paper, antistatic peanuts, foam sheets, etc.

Also, put the manual of each appliance in the same box with the appliance to save yourself some trouble when reassembling the piece later on.

Packing Large Kitchen Appliances

You should consult the respective manuals on how to best prepare larger appliances, such as refrigerators and stoves, for moving. It is generally recommended to switch the power off at least 24 hours before the move and to thoroughly clean the pieces.

Needless to say, you should empty the appliances of any items kept inside beforehand (as well as make sure there is no ice remaining in your fridge).

When the appliances are all clean and dry, tape the doors or use plastic wrap to prevent them from opening during transportation.

Use blankets, old curtains, or sheets to prevent scratches, dents, or other damage (use lots of packing tape or plastic wrap to hold the wrapping in place).

Keep in mind that improper preparation or attempts to move large appliances without adequate assistance may result in leaks, breakages, and permanent damage.

To ensure the safety of bulky, heavy, and sensitive kitchen appliances when moving house, you are strongly recommended to use professional moving services.

Experienced movers have the proper equipment and the required know-how to relocate your items in the safest and most efficient manner possible.

How to Pack Home Appliances for Moving

When it comes to kitchen tables, chairs, and other furniture pieces, you should pack them the same way as the rest of your furniture.

How to Pack Furniture for Moving

All your cookbooks should go in one small box, packed just like your other books.

How to Pack Books for Moving

Kitchen Moving Tips

Set up your new kitchen to get your normal life bakc on track.
The delectable smell of freshly prepared food coming from your new kitchen is certain to make you feel at home.

Being familiar with the best way to pack your kitchen, you are ready to take the next step in your relocation journey – the actual shipment of your goods to your new home.

Moving kitchen essentials, however, is not an easy task, even when they’re properly packed. Your best bet is to hire professional movers to help you out in this most important and risky stage of the moving process.

Tip #1. Hire top-rated movers

Research your moving options and get a moving quote before making your final decision.

Taking into account all the hidden costs of moving on your own, as well as all the strenuous labor and the numerous risks involved in the process, you’re very likely to decide that hiring professional movers is worth it, especially when moving bulky kitchen appliances.

The movers will take good care of your kitchen items and will deliver them intact to your new home. You can even request your movers to pack and unpack your kitchen appliances, as well as to re-connect them in your new home to save much valuable time and to ensure your peace of mind.

Kitchen furniture pieces, especially if they require disassembly, should also be handled by experienced movers. The skillful professionals will take good care of your kitchen breakables, too.

Just find the moving company that best suits your needs and available budget, and research it well to make sure you’re dealing with licensed and trustworthy movers.

How to Choose the Best Movers for You in 31.5 Steps

Tip #2. Get proper insurance

Some of your kitchen items are certainly quite expensive (appliances, silver-plated dining sets, crystal glasses, etc.), so it is a good idea to provide appropriate insurance coverage.

Your kitchen items will be in good hands when handled by professional movers, but accidents do happen.

Keep in mind that fragile items are particularly prone to damage and a great part of your kitchen items are very delicate and fragile.

So, when signing the moving contract, opt for the Full Value Protection plan to be properly reimbursed if any of your possessions get lost, stolen, or damaged while in the movers’ custody.

You may even decide to get additional insurance from a third party if you are going to move items of great value.

Moving Insurance: Released Value Protection and Full Value Protection

Tip #3. Plan to unpack

The kitchen will be one of the first rooms you’ll want to unpack after moving into your new home.

Make sure that kitchen appliances are taken directly to their rightful places when unloading the moving truck and have them properly set up as soon as possible.

Then, open the boxes that contain your kitchen essentials and get a healthy meal to recharge your energy – you will need it to cope with the rest of the unpacking process and to put the successful start of your new life in your new home!

How to Unpack After Moving: Room by Room Unpacking Checklist

Good luck packing and moving your kitchen!

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