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The 5 Best Space-Saving Solutions for Your Small Kitchen

When you think of the ideal kitchen, it’s likely a spacious one; maybe you think of a kitchen with a large island, lots of counter space, and countertops made of marble. The cupboards in your imaginary kitchen would be perfectly organized and there would be a big sink that’s never full of dishes.


Of course, that’s not realistic for most homes. Many have small, tightly packed kitchens with cupboards full of food and plates and all kinds of kitchen tools and dishes in the sink. The minimal counter space is pushed to its limit and you’re at a loss on what to do when it comes to preparing large meals. Sure, you may not have a big kitchen, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a functional space you love; you just need a little extra room. Here are some ideas on how to save space and make your narrow kitchen feel roomier.


1. Get the Most Out of Your Cupboard Space with Risers

Cabinet space disappears all too quickly in a small kitchen; at least the horizontal space does. What about all that empty space above your stacks of bowls and plates? Invest in some shelf risers. These will give you additional platforms to place dishes and other kitchen trinkets on, sort of like an additional shelf altogether.


You can do this with cans too, ideally with multiple levels on the riser. If you put the cans on the risers, you’ll be able to see what they are opposed to them being stacked on top of each other or hidden behind one another where they’re left to simply sit and expire.


2. Put Labels and Dates on Everything

When did you cook that lasagna again? What even is that in that jar? Purchasing a label maker isn’t necessary for this step; just take some masking tape and a marker and write down what’s in any unnamed containers and when you cooked them or first opened them. This way, food will be a lot easier to find in the fridge and in your cabinets and less will go to waste. Staying on top of expiration dates will also help you to clean out old items and make extra space in the fridge and pantry.


Take this a step further by labeling where to find any food items. Is there confusion in your household on which drawer in the fridge is the vegetable drawer? Label it. Label the cheese drawer too. Have certain cabinets for certain snacks? Label these as well. This will ensure everything is in its proper place and not only save space but also save time; no more digging around trying to find that one thing that isn’t where it should be!


Additionally, boxes take up space and sometimes what’s in them isn’t obvious. Invest in glass containers to keep snacks in and line them up in your cabinets instead of in their cardboard boxes. Then, of course, label everything so everyone knows what’s inside.


3. Save Counter Space with Creative Space Saver Storage Solutions

If you can put risers in your cabinets, why not put them on the countertops too? Invest in a bread box to put on your countertop. This allows you to put items that would be taking up additional counter space in the box and on top of the box, freeing up some of the counter.


Do you have any empty walls in your kitchen? Install some extra shelves on a free wall and store small appliances there instead of on the counter when not in use. Just take down your coffee machine or toaster and plug it in when you need it. Another similar solution is a peg board. You can hang a magnetic knife strip on it and get rid of that knife block sitting on the counter. You can even hang up pots and pans there as well.


If you don’t have an available wall, do you have a free side of the counter or cabinet? You can install additional storage there, whether it be more shelves or hooks to hang tools, towels, or other kitchen items on.


4. Optimize Your Cabinet Space with Organization Products

Do you have to practically crawl inside your lower cabinets to get a kitchen tool or tupperware lid? Spare yourself the hassle and replace those shelves with drawers you can easily roll out, no crawling required. You’ll also be able to look down at everything that’s in your cabinet all at once and find everything much more easily, once again saving both space and time.


Add a Lazy Susan into your cabinets as well, especially for spices. Avoid taking everything out of your cabinets and setting it all over your counter space. It’s much easier to just rotate a platform inside the cabinet.


Some of the most popular organization solutions are space saving inserts. At Kitchens by Countryside, we especially love the tiered cutlery drawers from Rev-a-Shelf and our clients do too! Organization solutions allow you to fit more items comfortably in your drawers and cabinets and open up room elsewhere. Our clients also go crazy for toe-kick drawers from KraftMaid! This thin drawers make the most of your cabinet space and make use of an area that would otherwise be useless.


5. Relocate What You Don’t Use

Do you have seasonal mugs you only use during winter? What about cute little holiday cookie cutters? Consider putting them away with your holiday decorations for the season instead of letting them take up valuable space in your compact kitchen.


You can do the same with the ice cream maker you have in the back of your cabinet that only sees use about once a year. If you don’t regularly use an item in your kitchen, it doesn’t need to stay there. Store it in a closet down the hall or even give it to a neighbor under the condition that they let you borrow it whenever you need it again.


When you’ve exhausted all of these simple DIY options and still don’t have enough space in your kitchen, it may be time to call in the big guns. The talented designers at Kitchens by Countryside know how to make the most of any space no matter how large or small. Stop by our showroom or give us a call and schedule an appointment to learn what storage and space-saving solutions are available for you!

Ready for an upgrade to your kitchen? Contact Kitchens By Oaks at 585.349.8100 to schedule your free design consultation today!