Smart ways to make the most of a small kitchen

Inspiring tiny kitchen ideas and organisational tips – even if you’re on a budget.

Updated

kitchen window and the garden outside

Having a compact kitchen shouldn’t kill your love of cooking. Our organisation ideas will bring delight to dinner time prep.

Hang what you can

This is where you can have fun being inventive. There are some obvious things you can do, such as putting up a magnetic strip for your knives and hanging a bar from the ceiling for your pots and pans, but you’ll want to make use of every inch of available space.

Put the inside of your cabinet doors to work – attach hooks to hang the likes of saucepan lids and blender attachments. Or get a little more inventive and use a plastic magazine holder affixed to a door as a place to keep boxes of cling film and aluminium foil. Meanwhile, a pocket organiser can store anything from sponges to cutlery.

The space under the sink is often wasted, so hang baskets in there. Items like tea towels and oven gloves can be hung from hooks on the walls or the back of the kitchen door. Using an expandable curtain rod fixed across a window provides room for hanging kitchen utensils from ’S’ hooks.

Organise by what you use

Think about what you rarely use – a crockpot, a mixer, a party platter – and put those things in the awkward, hard-to-get-to spaces. Think about the areas above cupboards and the fridge, or the back corner of a cupboard. Consider whether you have room elsewhere in the house for fancier serving bowls and glasses. Your nicest pieces could become a feature on a shelf in the living room, for example.

Make the most of cabinets and cupboards

Your cabinets may have more unused space than you realise. Rolling shelves that pull out allow easy access and ensure that no capacity is wasted at the very back. There’s often dead space under shelves – fix baskets or mug racks here – and a simple (and cheap) standing rack also maximises vertical room.

Keeping cabinets tidy also helps. Jars and Tupperware should be wrangled into containers (even a cardboard box will suffice here), and putting dried goods into jars keeps things more orderly than having a bunch of differently-sized packages. Top tip: label everything with masking tape so you don’t forget the type of beans and grains you bought. (Check out our plastic-free food storage ideas here.)

Use all and any disused areas

If you have wall space where you can’t fit shelves (maybe the fridge door gets in the way, for example) then a pegboard makes for a capable backup. Mount one on the wall and buy assorted hooks so you can hang anything from a peeler to a sieve to saucepans.

A narrow space by the cooker or fridge may be enough to squeeze a small rolling cart into. You can use it for holding cooking oils, spices, utensils and anything else that you need to hand.

Create extra counter space with a sink cover, which you can use to stack items out of the way or as a place to collect ingredients you are about to use. A chopping board that fits over the sink separates your prep area to max out your kitchen space.

For more inspiration check out these 7 handy kitchen hacks.

Originally published