Spice Up Your Kitchen Storage
Finding the right home for your spices within your overall kitchen design can be a detail that’s easily overlooked. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of options for spice storage, and their relatively small size makes them prime candidates for capitalizing on otherwise lost or under-utilized space.
Location is a key determining factor in choosing the right place for your spices, and most cooks opt to have their favorite spices and oils close at hand. “One of the best places you can store your jars of spices is on either side of the range,” notes Normandy Designer Leslie Lee. “They are easily accessible at the point of use and it’s these types of thoughtful placements that can make your kitchen more efficient overall.”
Drawers are available with special inserts to make your spices easier to see at a glance, but they tend to limit the size of the jar and the number of spices you can store in the space. Cooks with a large number of spices may keep their less frequently used spices elsewhere, such as the pantry, and keep only their preferred choices near the cooktop. “Some people are concerned with storing their spices so close to a heat source,” says Leslie. “But today’s ovens are well insulated and the cabinet itself should not become excessively warm to the point it would degrade the quality of the spices.”
Dedicated shelving that pulls out from a narrow cabinet is another popular option, which also greatly increases the storage options. “These pull-outs have adjustable shelves to accommodate varying sizes of jars and are a great choice for the space adjacent to the range,” says Leslie. If you like this solution but are very tight on space, you may be able to incorporate spice storage into decorative pilasters or columns, which takes advantage of an otherwise wasted space.
While designers do their best to optimize every square inch of the kitchen, there are times when the shape of the room or a primary design driver may create odd sized cabinets. A shallow cabinet that’s created as part of an island or an existing wall bump-out that limits cabinetry options may not fit common kitchen items, but would be an excellent choice for spice jars. Overflow spice storage in particular can be relegated to small or shallow cabinets that you might otherwise have been tempted to ignore all together.
If your cabinetry options have already been exhausted, it may be time to consider a well-placed niche. Either adjacent to the cooktop or directly behind the cooking surface, these open spaces are a popular place for oils, salt and pepper, and other everyday spices. Niches typically take advantage of either the space between the wall studs, in the case of behind the stove, or on the side of a cabinet to create a flexible space that can accommodate a variety of cooking oils and seasonings.
Addressing the fine details of how you work within your kitchen is one of the benefits you gain when working with a designer, such as Leslie Lee. If you would like to talk with Leslie about creating a solution for your upcoming kitchen remodel, you can request a consultation, stop by our showroom, or even sign up for one of our educational kitchen seminars.