5 Space-Saving Kitchen Tips & Tricks

The kitchen is the one room in the home where most people agree they could always use more space. Between the plethora of pots, pans, serving dishes and pantry essentials, not to mention all of the electrics and gadgets, kitchen real estate is at a premium. Some use a lack of kitchen space as an excuse for not cooking more, but New York Times food writer, Mark Bittman said it best when he opined, "When it comes to kitchens, size and equipment don't count nearly as much as devotion, passion, common sense and, of course, experience."

But when passion, devotion, experience and common sense cannot overcome the feeling of claustrophobia you feel when trying to work in a small space stacked with stuff, here are five tips and tricks to help save space in the kitchen:

Clear Clutter

Sort through all belongings, going through cabinet by cabinet, getting rid of expired pantry items and any non-essential tools, dishware and gadgets that you don't use regularly. Notice that you have a lot of multiples of items such as mixing bowls, wooden spoons, spatulas and other essential tools? Get rid of any that are worse for the wear and set aside any other extras for storage. Do you have a lot of cookware and serving ware for entertaining, when you only entertain guests for the big holidays? Consider renting a small unit from a self storage facility to get entertaining necessities out of the way.

Add Vertical Storage

Stop stacking big items like cutting boards, platters, baking sheets and wire racks, which make for heavy lifting anytime you need to get to something. Instead, dedicate one cabinet to vertical storage by adding in a few dividers. Martha Stewart editors recommend doing so using tension rods, suggesting to "buy rods to fit the space, and position pairs of them at intervals." This is also an ideal way to store large lids to pots and pans.

Keep Things Off the Countertops

Cluttered countertops prevent you from working efficiently in the kitchen. Instead of using counter space for storage, maximize space by hanging things on the walls instead. Mount a pegboard on an empty wall and add hooks for ladles, serving spoons and whisks. Get rid of the knife block and hang knives on the wall with a magnetic strip. Mount paper towels on the back of a cabinet door instead of having them on the counter.

Make the Most of Corners

Don't let usable space go to waste! Get more storage out of your kitchen corners by adding corner shelving. A corner shelving unit is great for storing spices and cooking essentials such as olive oil, sea salt, pepper and any other items you cook with daily.

Hang a Pot Rack

Whether you choose a wall-mounted kitchenware rod or a traditional ceiling-hung pot rack, storing pots and pans in a more space-efficient way is vital for anyone with a small kitchen who needs more cabinet space.

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