28 Clutter-Free Kitchen Storage Ideas (Updated 2023)
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Many refer to the kitchen as the heart of the home. It’s more than just where we cook; it’s a place for friends and family to gather. Our kitchens also tend to become workhorses, providing a place for kids to do homework, doubling as a home office, and serving as command central for your family.
But, with so many activities happening in one place, you’re bound to end up with a lot of stuff. And, if you don’t have a place to put it, chaos follows. Since space is critical to how a room functions, storage becomes critical. Whether you’re working in a small, cozy kitchen or have an expansive farmhouse-inspired setup, proper organization is vital.
That’s why we’ve rounded up 28 of the cleverest storage ideas for your kitchen. So you can spend less time searching for one of 20 spatulas and more time whipping up your next gourmet masterpiece.
1. OXO Storage Containers
These versatile storage containers are organization masters, storing everything from cereal to pasta and staples like flour, sugar, and salt. They’re also great for holding various snack foods and other items instead of keeping them in their original cardboard or plastic packaging.
Storing food this way can leave you with stale, spoiled food in no time at all. But, when you store your products in these OXO containers from Williams and Sonoma, it keeps your food fresher longer. Plus, they come in a bunch of different sizes, so you can choose which ones work the best for your storage needs.
2. Easy to Use Under Shelf Baskets
When your cabinet or pantry shelves are spaced far apart, you can lose out on a lot of valuable storage space. Sure, you can install extra shelves, but sometimes you want the height for things like tall pitchers.
Luckily, there’s an easier way to squeeze extra storage into these dead zones (no tools required); use these handy under-the-shelf baskets from Walmart. You can slide them onto the shelf’s edge easily without any need for tools or hardware. They’re the perfect place to put jars of spices, dish towels, even saucers, or other small dishes.
3. Create a DIY Pot Rack
The idea of hanging your pots and pans probably seems like a no-brainer when it comes to using up every inch of storage in your kitchen. But that doesn’t mean you have to run out and buy a fancy, expensive pot rack.
Instead, add a touch of personality to your pots and pans by displaying them from a clever and functional DIY pot rack like this one from Home Talk. An old ladder, some paint, chains, and a bunch of S-hooks become the perfect place to store pots, pans, and other large cookware. Then, you can keep your cabinets free for different items.
4. Pull-Out Cabinet Drawer
Have you ever tried to get something out of your cabinet only to discover it’s all the way in the back? Then, you have to drag everything else out before you can get the things you need, put it all back in again, and finally start doing what you wanted to do in the first place.
Well, this double-decker set of sliding shelves from Wayfair makes this scenario a thing of the past. You can easily access everything in your cabinet, even the items stuck in the back, by sliding out the whole unit.
5. Tilt Out Tray Under the Sink
Tapping into often forgotten spaces is one of the most effective ways to make the most of your storage potential. The false drawer front under your kitchen sink hides a great place to sneak extra organization into your space. While you can’t install a whole drawer thanks to that necessary thing called plumbing, you can still keep a few essentials.
Using a tilt-out tray kit like Heather Buckingham via Pinterest, you can create the perfect place for things like a dish sponge, pair of scissors, sink strainer, and other small items. You can find the kits online or at home improvement stores.
6. Store Pot Lids in a Magazine Rack
Sure, you can buy fancy lid organizers, but repurposing items for other uses is what home organization is all about, right? This is especially the case when you want to get the most bang for your buck. In this idea from HGTV, a simple magazine rack is reimagined as a place to keep pot and pan lids tidy and within easy reach.
The natural, tilt-out design of the magazine rack makes the tops a breeze to access, and you don’t end up with a jumble of lids sliding around your cabinet shelves or getting bent, cracked, or warped underneath other items.
7. Tension Rods to Store Baking Sheets
Stacking your baking dishes on top of each other in a drawer can be a real hassle to handle, especially when you want the one on the bottom. This idea is brilliant, giving you the look of fancy cabinet built-ins, with no tools required and only for a few bucks.
All you need to turn your cabinet into the ultimate storage area for baking sheets are a few curtain tension rods. In this setup from The Kitchn, rods in the back and front of the cabinet create quick and easy dividers for a set of bakeware.
8. Pull-Out Upright Utensil Storage
Are you tired of scrounging around in your drawer through a jumble of kitchen utensils every time you need a spatula or slotted spoon? Storing your utensils upright can make it a lot easier to find and grab what you need, which is why people often put them in a jar on the counter or hang them up.
But many people don’t like keeping their items out in the open. Therefore, enter this solution from Kraftmaid, a pull-out organizer with inset containers to store your utensils and more. Then, when you don’t need them, they simply slide out of view.
9. Freestanding Pantry
Does your kitchen lack a built-in pantry? Or maybe you need a place to keep kitchen staples that isn’t the top of your counter. Lack of food storage can be a real problem.
Freestanding pantries can be a great way to add tons of extra storage to your space, and many offer varying setups so you can organize the things you want in the way you want. This piece from The Owner Builder Network not only makes a statement, but it offers a collection of shelves, bins, baskets, and more to provide the ultimate storage solution for numerous items.
10. Recessed Spice Shelf
Is your kitchen maxed out when it comes to storage? If you feel like you’ve used up all of your space and still don’t have enough, don’t give up yet. Did you know you have about another five or so inches of space behind your walls?
The Family Handyman shows you exactly how to tap into this wasted space by creating a recessed spice rack. Between your wall studs, there’s space just calling out for you to put it to good use. The narrow depth of the shelves becomes the perfect size for things like spices, oils, and others cooking essentials.
11. Slim Slide Out Shelves
Speaking of using every inch of space, take a moment and look around your kitchen. We bet you can find a few empty spaces, like alongside your refrigerator or stove. However, it’s so narrow; you’ve probably always assumed there’s nothing you can do with it, right?
Well, time to think again with this DIY idea from Heather’s Handmade Life. With just a few simple materials, you can create a slim slide-out shelf that enables you to utilize all those skinny dead zones in your kitchen. Paint your finished product to match the surrounding area, and you’ve got instant hidden storage.
12. Spinning Storage
Turntables are an organizing classic, and for good reason; they make it super easy to access items on deep shelves and inside cabinets. Instead of moving a bunch of stuff around, you just take your storage for a spin, literally. Turntables, or lazy susans, come in all sorts of styles, including double-decker, raised sides, clear, and more.
This one from Kitchen Stuff Plus is the perfect complement to the clear shelves inside a fridge, keeping items organized and within reach. Plus, the slightly raised lip along the turntable’s edge ensures your bottles won’t go toppling when you spin them.
13. Magnetic Knife Holder
Take your knives out of that old crusty knife block and hang them within arm’s reach on your backsplash or the side of a cabinet. Like this one from Crate & Barrel, using a magnetic knife holder keeps your knives accessible and in good shape.
Plus, they stay cleaner, too, since all sorts of nasty things can accumulate in the bottom of that knife block. Honestly, when’s the last time anyone actually cleaned the inside of that thing? Each magnetic bar holds several knives, so you likely only need one or two strips to organize your items.
14. Refrigerator Containers
When you open your fridge, are you greeted with a jumble of produce, snacks, juice pouches, and other items? Trying to prepare a meal or pack a lunch when things are all over the place can become a daunting task. But what if you could open your fridge and find precisely what you need in mere seconds?
That would undoubtedly be a dream come true, and with these see-through, sturdy containers from Amazon, that dream can be a reality. Use them to organize and store all of your refrigerator items, keeping things upright instead of falling all over your fridge.
15. Hang Mugs on Hooks
Kitchen cabinets work overtime, storing plates, cookware, glasses, mugs, and all sorts of other items. Anytime you can free up cabinet space is a good idea, and this often means coming up with alternative ways to store some of those items.
Blue Roof Cabin uses pretty hooks to hang their set of coffee mugs, which keeps them out of the cabinet. This way, you can save your cabinet shelves for items you might not be as eager to have on display. Plus, it makes it all that easier to grab a mug to make that essential morning cup of coffee.
16. An Island of Storage
Let’s face it, if you have the room, a kitchen island is a powerhouse of storage and can do so many different things. Some islands provide ample extra workspace; others feature a separate prep sink, while others even house small appliances like a microwave or a toaster oven.
You can find pretty much endless design possibilities when it comes to styles and sizes, choosing an island that stands out or one that flows with the rest of the design, like this one showcased in the Las Vegas Review. And if you don’t have a big kitchen, there are even smaller, portable options.
17. Use a Bathroom Towel Bar
Just because you’re organizing the kitchen doesn’t mean you should only look in the kitchen department for your storage solutions. Many items intended for other rooms can become perfect storage solutions in other spaces. For example, bathroom organizers often become great choices for keeping things tidy in the kitchen.
Plus, they come in so many styles and colors, it’s easy to find one that complements your design. For example, My Sweet Savannah shows how this stylish bathroom towel bar becomes the perfect place to hang a dish towel within easy reach on the side of your kitchen island.
18. Over the Door Rack
The space on the back of the pantry door often gets forgotten, or at best, people hang a few hooks. But there’s so much more potential for storage in this kitchen wasteland; we just couldn’t pass it up.
Maximizing your organizational prowess is all about making the most efficient use of your space, and flexible storage solutions let you do just that. The popular Elfa system from The Container Store features an over-the-door rack that provides multiple configurations and possibilities, so you can set it up exactly how you need it.
19. Under the Sink Organizer
The space under the kitchen sink can often be frustrating to organize since you have things like pipes and maybe a garbage disposal in the way. But, when you’re creating the most efficient kitchen possible, you don’t forget about any potential space.
So, instead of just putting a few random cleaners or a pile of food storage containers under there, get this handy under-the-sink solution from Amazon. The adjustable rods fit around the pipes and other things you can’t move, and the shelves pop on and off easily, so you can configure the perfect storage setup for this abyss.
20. Park Your Appliances
Small appliances can make or break a kitchen. Some of us use them all the time, others not so much. But the dilemma often lies in the fact that we all need to use them at least sometimes. However, we don’t want them out on the counter; it creates too much clutter.
On the other hand, dragging them in and out of cabinets whenever we need them can be a real pain. Instead, create an appliance station like this one from Lemon Thistle. You simply slide out the shelf and plug in the appliance you want to use.
21. Hanging Mason Jars
If you have a small pantry, finding other places to store various food items becomes critical. But, sometimes, you end up having to keep your things in plain sight, so aesthetics become an important consideration. Here’s a fun and functional idea, especially perfect for the farmhouse or rustic kitchen.
The Paper Mama uses hanging mason jars to store things like rice, nuts, and sugar, keeping these things close at hand and leaving pantry shelves free for other stuff. The lids mount to the underside of a cabinet; then, you simply screw the jars on and off the lid to access the contents.
22. Expandable Utensil Tray
Drawers come in all different shapes and sizes, so why would you want to get a utensil tray that ends up being too small or too big? All that does is end up wasting space, or you can’t use it at all because it doesn’t fit.
This expandable bamboo utensil tray from Wayfair allows you to adjust the size to fit your drawer. Additionally, it features 8 divided compartments for keeping things like spoons, spatulas, whisks, and other utensils neat and tidy. The natural finish complements any decor, and the tray expands to 22.8 inches wide.
23. Turn Plates Into Art
Are you short on room in your kitchen cabinets for your plates? Or maybe you lack decor in your kitchen? You can solve both problems with one solution with this stylish, bespoke plate shelf from Etsy. It’s the perfect way to store your plates in plain view while creating a statement piece of art.
And, since it’s handmade, you can order it to your specifications, choosing from unfinished, painted, or different stain colors, as well as various sizes. Or, if you’re feeling handy, go ahead and make your own so that you can add some personal flair.
24. Over the Sink Shelf
We’ve talked about storing items under the kitchen sink, but what about over it? A slim raised shelf, like this one from Seventh Avenue, creates an excellent spot to keep things like dish soap, a pretty plant, and other small items. It also makes washing dishes more convenient since everything you need is right there at your fingertips.
This particular shelf comes in different colors, and you can also find styles that provide double or tiered shelves. There are also numerous designs available, so you can find one that works best for your kitchen.
25. Nesting Tupperware Set
Okay, so it’s no surprise that food storage containers are an absolute enigma. Somehow, no matter how carefully we try to store them, we end up with mismatched or missing lids. In fact, sometimes, we even end up with tops we swear never had a container to go with them. It’s a real mystery.
Plus, they often slide around and topple over, becoming one big storage nightmare. Stop the insanity and get this nesting, stackable set of storage containers from Target instead. Everything stays together, in one place, brilliant. Plus, they’re freezer, microwave, and dishwasher-safe; it’s like hitting a storage homerun.
26. A Pretty and Functional Baker’s Rack
You don’t have to be an actual baker to appreciate the usefulness of a good baker’s rack in your kitchen. They can offer an ideal place for extra storage while adding a charming design element to your space. This slim-line, iron model from Joss & Main provides ample storage for things like large pots, plates, and jars.
Plus, it comes with special organizers for wine glasses, hooks for things like mugs or dish towels, and even features a built-in wine rack. With these touches, you could even convert this baker’s rack into a small bar area.
27. Install Toe-Kick Drawers
The area beneath your kitchen cabinets, called a toe-kick, often remains unused and wasted, especially since it’s so close to the floor. Yet, imagine having additional storage running the entire length of your base cabinets. The Owner Builder Network shows how installing shallow drawers in this area gives you an ideal place for many things.
For example, they’re great for storing rarely used items like shallow baking dishes, serving trays, and other small gadgets and whatnots. You can also use them as a place to stash a surplus supply of plastic utensils, napkins, or specialty items like holiday linens.
28. Use Wall-Mounted Baskets
Don’t forget about vertical space when you’re organizing your kitchen, and we don’t just mean inside of your pantry or cabinets. You’ve also got a whole lot of available space on your walls. However, when you’re storing things out in the open, don’t forget to consider form as well as function.
Choose items that look as good as they perform, like these simple yet attractive hanging baskets that All That Brings Joy uses to create a floating produce stand. The added touch of the chalkboard paint backdrop makes the whole setup charming as well as handy.