Organizing Spices - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 17 Old 07-10-2008, 09:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How do you do it? We have very little space in our kitchen (seriously), and they're all crammed in a cabinet right now, and I can't see them at a glance (or even easily - they're about 5 deep and 10 across). Our cabinets are not very tall, so there isn't room to even stack 2 up. I have very little counter space. (Enough for a microwave, coffee maker, and about a foot of work space).

It's driving me crazy not knowing where Y is, how much I have left of X , etc - I know, those are the problems we like to have.

Anybody have a creative way to store spices? Even maybe hanging them on a wall or something. I was thinking something like those clear shoe organizers but those pockets are too big - any ideas? We are in a rented apartment, so it can't be "permanent".

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#2 of 17 Old 07-10-2008, 10:29 PM
 
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I bought this tray at Container Store in the kitchen area. Its made in the USA. It was under $24 if I remember correctly. As you can see I love frontier!


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#3 of 17 Old 07-10-2008, 10:55 PM
 
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I saw thison Sara's (Delight) flickr site and loved it! You could use any metal surface, like the tray, to make this. Also, you could just stick the magnetic spice containers onto the side of your fridge. I'm not sure where to get the magnetic spice holders, but you could prob. do a google search and find some
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#4 of 17 Old 07-10-2008, 11:23 PM
 
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It is a storage dilemma as I think we use over 50 spices semi-regularly.

I think that IKEA and the Container Store have magnetic spice holders that would obviously fit on the fridge. I'd be worried about people in my household not closing spices properly though .

My neighbour buys spices in small flat plastic bags (that are displayed on racks in stores) and stores them in a shoebox alphabetized and just has her most-used spices in a small pop-down undercabinet rack that she made using hardware from Lee Valley tools.

I have 3 very small drawers that I use for spices, but we're overflowing that space so we either have to reduce the spice jar size or increase our storage area.

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#5 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 12:42 AM
 
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I organize my spices thematically ie. the Baking box contains my cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves etc... Mediterranean holds oregano, basil... Then when I'm cooking, I just grab the relevant box/es and I'm good to go.
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#6 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oooh, Amy, I likey.

Please, though, tell me what those sliding boxes are that you put your spices in....wait...it's coming to me...ah, yes....I've heard of them before...drawers....

I'm jesting, but only partly. We have two drawers (count 'em, two) - both 11 inches wide (wth kind of measurment is that???). They hold cutlery and all the random otherness (it is the *only* junk spot in the house, but its more of a catch-all for items that just don't go anywhere else) But...I'm thinking something like that would work in the cabinets, and then I could see them, at least when I'm on the stepstool....I will have to look into that...can't hurt to try, eh?

I did have mine thematically arranged for a while, but, it really wasn't working for me...when I'm using cinnamon and cloves in a savory dish (say, lentils), or ginger (which goes both ways when I'm cooking), it just got to be a hassle for me.
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#7 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 12:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MelanieMC View Post
I saw thison Sara's (Delight) flickr site and loved it! You could use any metal surface, like the tray, to make this. Also, you could just stick the magnetic spice containers onto the side of your fridge. I'm not sure where to get the magnetic spice holders, but you could prob. do a google search and find some
I stole this idea from Sara too I got the magnetic spice containers from Bed Bath & Beyond and I just have them on the side of my fridge. I keep the extra spices (I buy in bulk) in a rubbermaid container in an infrequently used cabinet and just refill when necessary. I used a labelmaker on the magnet on the backs so I know what's actually in them. Oh, and you can use up to 5 BB&B coupons at a time and they never expire

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#8 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 01:15 PM
 
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I have a wooden cassette storage box that I hung on the wall. It's narrow and the spice bottles fit nice on it.

(cassettes as in one time there music came on LP's then 8 tracks then CASSETTES then cd's then mp3's....)
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#9 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 02:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I stole this idea from Sara too I got the magnetic spice containers from Bed Bath & Beyond and I just have them on the side of my fridge. I keep the extra spices (I buy in bulk) in a rubbermaid container in an infrequently used cabinet and just refill when necessary. I used a labelmaker on the magnet on the backs so I know what's actually in them. Oh, and you can use up to 5 BB&B coupons at a time and they never expire
Oooh...we're always getting BB&B coupons (I bought ONE item, three years ago, and they've apparently decided we're hooked). Must look into that....

Hmmm...My mind's a-whirling right now...I'm thinking maybe I could magnetize my frequently used spices (about 30 of them), and store my infrequently used ones in the Amy container. I like the decorative tray idea w/the spice containers someone mentioned up-thread - that looks sharp (Did I just use that phrase? I've officially turned into my mother). I need to do some research, and I think I'm going to end up going with something like that combo.

Totally OT, my parents HAD an 8-track player when I was a kid - that I remember using - and I was born in '77.
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#10 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 02:27 PM
 
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We have this ugly thing that hangs on the wall to hold them. It has two rows. DH's parents found it in their garage. It is nice because we can see everything. Still ugly though

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#11 of 17 Old 07-11-2008, 07:38 PM
 
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We put our spices in small jars (4oz ones from the Container Store), then the jars go in kitchen drawers. With the labels on the jar lids, it's easy to find what we need.

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#12 of 17 Old 07-17-2008, 12:01 AM
 
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i have this rack from ikea, with these jars. its mounted on the wall, but you can also hang it on one of these rails. i have one of those too, but i have hooks on it for spatulas and stuff

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#13 of 17 Old 07-17-2008, 06:02 PM
 
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I cook with quite a lot of spices too and tried different ways of organizing the spices without too much luck. I ended up storing the spices in a drawer. Wanted one of those spice racks from drawers but my drawer was long, not wide enough and also not deep enough. So, I just laid some drawer liner in the drawer and flat put the spice bottles. It worked out good and my spices are put in alphabetical order.

For those spices I use a lot of, I buy them in bulk. The bulk packages I store in a tin box in the pantry. As I use up the bottles of spices in the drawer, I restock those most used spices. Now, I am not searching for that elusive bottle of spice in the pantry anymore.....

Good luck organizing the spices....

PS: don't keep the spices for too long, they loose their "potency"/fragrance. It's better to buy smaller bottles instead of big bulk ones and keep those big ones forever...
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#14 of 17 Old 07-23-2008, 09:50 AM
 
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I'm getting the magnetic ones for my birthday. We are in the midst of a move and I am going from TONS of kitchen space (like, I have several empty cupboards ) to not as much, so I am going to have to be creative. I am used to having 4 drawers, 9 large cupboards and a huge built in pantry...Downsizing to 1 drawer & significantly less cupboard space. It will be a creative challenge!

Ps. I am NOT good at organizational solutions, it doesn't come naturally to me, so really a challenge.
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#15 of 17 Old 07-24-2008, 03:30 AM
 
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I store most of mine in a drawer. I lvoe this system!

If you aren't otherwise using the space, an overdoor shoe organizer (clear) would work, and you could group multiple spice bottles in each shoe "cubby"

Our pantry hosts an over-door shoe organizer (ok, EVERY door in my house, practically, has one! Only one has shoes in it lol), but we have oven mitts, jello packets (DH has a fondness), some first aid things, small packets and random pantry items that were too small and kept getting lost in the pantry. Our pepper box lives in there. I could see it being a viable spot for spices, if that is the space you have.
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#16 of 17 Old 07-24-2008, 03:37 AM
 
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Another thought, depending on the size of your cabinets -
You could keep spices in a shallow box or basket, insde the cabinet. Pull down the whole box when you are cooking. Have spices in uniformed sized containers, if possible, and label the TOPS so you can see what you have at a glance.
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#17 of 17 Old 07-24-2008, 09:01 AM
 
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I have a flat wooden upright spice rack that sits on my kitchen bench. My spices are arranged alphabetically within it (except when DH puts things back haphazardly).

I would prefer to eventually get them off my bench, but I have so little storage space in my kitchen that this is the best solution so far.

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