How to Maximize Cabinet Space in Your Small Kitchen

It certainly feels true that there is never enough space in the kitchen. It’s definitely true that you need to use the kitchen multiple times a day, and searching for every pot lid you need to make a meal or sorting through all of your utensils when you need a wooden spoon can make the experience so frustrating you may call for takeout. Small kitchens can seem especially challenging, but with some smart kitchen storage ideas, you can make the most of your space and have fun making dinner again.

Subtract Unnecessary Items

You may be tempted, especially in a smaller kitchen, to cram everything you can fit behind closed cabinet doors. The problem is, of course, that when you can’t find a saucepan, you’ll regret that strategy. Lots of things can be removed from your cupboards and displayed or stored elsewhere. Begin by taking an honest inventory of your kitchen. If you have never used your garlic press or you’re much more likely to reach for the Microplane over the bulky box grater, you might be able to donate a few things to free up space.

Pretty Things

While you don’t want to cover your countertops with all the things you used to store, some might be worthy of display. If you have a beautiful set of mixing bowls, you could put them on an open shelf. Utensils such as ladles, stirring spoons, and spatulas can be moved from a drawer to a crock near the stove. Make this look intentional by corralling the utensil crock, olive oil, and salt & pepper grinders on a pretty tray. 

If you have blank wall space, you could also benefit from a magnetic strip. Many people store knives on a magnet, and this might make sense for you too. Be creative with other possible uses for magnetic storage as well: spices can be stored in labeled metal jars and stored on a magnetic surface. The side of a fridge can hold hooks for dish towels, pot holders, and utensils. Choose potholders and towels that make you happy, and that complement your decor, and suddenly your storage has become stylish.

Occasional or Seasonal Things

If you use your giant stock pot twice a year and you have the option, move it to the basement storage room where you can grab it when you make your grandma’s famous chicken noodle soup. Party supplies or large serving dishes you use only on holidays can likewise be moved elsewhere in the house. 

Decant Bulk Items

Getting that bag of rice or block of brown sugar into storage containers that utilize every inch of your cabinet space can go a long way. Choose containers that are clear, square or rectangular, and stackable, so you can see what you’ve got and avoid the negative space that comes with round jars and messy original packaging.

Use Every Inch

Now that you’ve moved the Christmas dishes to the holiday storage and brought your stand mixer or other display-worthy items out of the cupboards, concentrate on eliminating dead space within your cabinets. 

Adjust Shelf Height

Standard kitchen shelving is usually easily adjustable, and you should feel comfortable moving shelves up and down to accommodate your specific use. Create a tall space where trays, cutting boards, and backing sheets can stand upright, for example, and make them much easier to access.

Add Risers 

When adjusting shelf height doesn’t make sense, you can use risers to create additional space. Stack your daily use plates and bowls below and regular-use serving dishes above on a riser, making both stacks easy to access.

Install Custom Shelves

The most effective way to use your specific kitchen cabinet space is to plan and install custom cabinet shelves. Custom wire shelving solutions are a great way to use every inch available. Corner cabinets are an easy place to lose things. Installing lazy susans in corners or pull-out racks can help with corner cabinets and with other deep lower cabinets. No one likes to get on their hands and knees to peer into the deep recesses of a lower cabinet whenever they need to find a pot lid!

Wire shelving is surprisingly versatile and easy to adjust. All the components you need to create a custom kitchen cabinet storage plan, such as pull out baskets, can be incorporated into a wire shelving system. Shelves can go up to the top of the cabinets and take advantage of small leftover spaces to store small items.

Get the Help You Need

At Harkraft, we have years of experience with creating customized organization systems. We would love to help you navigate the choices and make the right decisions for your kitchen cabinet storage. Everyone deserves a kitchen where it’s a joy to spend time. Get in touch with us today to talk to a designer or talk about what we can do to transform your kitchen cabinets.