Tips for the Small Kitchen: Storage, Space-Saving Gear, and Other Essentials (2022)


When you present individuals your kitchen, they ask “Where’s the rest of it?” We get it. If you reside in an enormous metropolis, it is not unusual to search out kitchens crammed into hallways and former closets. If your kitchen is so small it’s a must to retailer bread vertically to maintain it from protruding into the lounge, then that is the information for you. 

Maybe you are having hassle becoming your chef’s knives onto your restricted counter house. Maybe your loved one Dutch oven sits in the center of the flooring. If so, we now have some inventive storage options and fun-size cookware that WIRED writers have cherished and examined. Do you want some inspiration after you have your setup perfected? Don’t overlook to take a look at our different shopping for guides, together with the Best Cookbooks and the Best Pots and Pans.

Updated January 2022: We’ve swapped out the Cooks Standard 36-Inch Pot Rack, which we love, for the Wallniture Lyon rack, since the Cooks Standard is presently out of inventory in every single place. We’ve additionally added the Gneiss Spice magnetic spice jars, Hamilton Beach Mini 3-Cup Food Processor, Le Creuset Small Utensil Crock, Raddish Mini Cooking Tool Set, and Ebern Designs Aliecia hanging fruit basket.

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Maximize Storage Space

Schmidt Brothers Acacia

Photograph: Crate & Barrel

  • Start with pot hanger shelves. Getting these pots and pans onto the wall will release treasured drawer and cupboard house. If you do not have room for a shelf, a hanging bar will get skillets, saucepans, and woks out of your manner.
  • Mount a wooden knife bar to your wall. The magnets that seize the knives are hidden beneath the wooden, so it’s going to be much less prone to chip or uninteresting your knife blades than an all-metal bar. Skip the countertop knife block—not solely does it take up counter house, it’s going to uninteresting the blades of your knives extra rapidly.
  • Wall-mounted spice racks additionally release a whole lot of cupboard house. Buy a bare rack and inventory it with good spices, like alternatives from Burlap & Barrel. Spices are one space the place it is best to spend cash; the distinction in high quality is noticeable. WIRED product reviewer and author Louryn Strampe sticks magnetic spice jars to her fridge. She likes Gneiss Spice, which is available in a ready-made package. You can even specify the spices you want.
  • If you are low on drawer house, retailer your cooking utensils in a utensil crock. This Le Creuset Utensil Crock ($55) has sufficient room to carry all of your spoons, spatulas, and tongs.
  • Hanging fruit baskets imply you will not want to make use of treasured counter house to retailer contemporary fruit and greens. Leave your tomatoes, potatoes, and stone fruit out of the fridge.

Consolidate (and Downsize) Your Cookware

Lodge Enameled Dutch Oven

Photograph: Amazon

  • How typically do you actually use that quesadilla maker or steaming basket? One multicooker can change a few much less typically used machines. The Instant Pot for ($89) is the most well-known, however there are other multicookers value a glance.
  • A Dutch oven, like this enameled one from Lodge ($80), can even change a number of single-use pots or machines. I’ve used my Dutch oven to steam oysters, bake cornbread, slow-cook stews, and make barbecue.
  • WIRED product reviewer and author Louryn Strampe makes most of her meals in the Great Jones’ Deep Cut ($90), a hybrid pan that is a cross between a skillet, a frying pan, and a sauté pan. “It doesn’t shine in one area over any other,” she says, “but it’s sturdy, it heats up evenly, and the stainless steel surface cleans up easily in the dishwasher.” WIRED meals author Joe Ray recommends an identical multi-use possibility from All Clad.
  • You do not want that many knives. Ditch the 10-inch knife set: An 8- or 9-inch chef’s knife, a smaller paring knife, a bread knife, and perhaps a few specialty blades will suffice. Or contemplate changing all of them with a general-purpose Chinese caidao. For extra data, try our chef’s knife buying guide.
  • If drawer house is restricted, you possibly can even downsize your hand instruments. Senior affiliate evaluations editor Adrienne So bought a pair of tiny tongs in a mail-order cooking kit for her six-year-old daughter, however she rapidly discovered them helpful for the whole lot from flipping sausages to tossing noodles and serving salad at the desk in tight confines. “I also use her tiny whisk for salad dressing, her tiny stirring spoon, and her tiny spatula much more often than I’d like to admit,” So says. “Tiny tools forever!”
  • Consider a small meals processor if you do not have sufficient prep house to deal with a knife safely. The Hamilton Beach Mini Food Processor ($19) can slice and cube as much as three cups of elements at a time. WIRED product reviewer and author Medea Giordano has had hers for three years now and notably loves utilizing it to make contemporary pasta sauce.

Add Prep Surfaces

Catskill Craftsmen Maple Cutting Board

Photograph: Wayfair 

  • Cutting boards take up a ton of room whenever you’re doing meal preparation. Buy one which’s made to suit over your sink, like this Catskill Craftsmen Maple Cutting Board ($27). Hardwood, like the maple used right here, is less complicated in your knives than bamboo.
  • Mount a drop-leaf desk to a close-by wall. The IKEA Bjursta ($45) is 3 ft of counter house that swings down and away when not in use.
  • Burner covers can add house to your cooktop. Use them to make a spot to set down an additional reducing board or utensils. This Prosumer’s Choice Bamboo Workstation ($60) can cowl half your stovetop—get two for a steady flat floor over all 4 burners.
  • Buy a rolling cart. Most are typically 48 inches lengthy, however if you happen to’re in a tiny kitchen you will be higher off with 36 inches or much less. You can tuck it right into a nook of your kitchen-adjacent room and wheel it over whenever you want extra counter house, then roll it away whenever you’re not utilizing it. Utility carts can even transfer the place you want them to go.

How to Move in the Kitchen

  • Here are some suggestions from WIRED senior author and product reviewer Scott Gilbertson, who labored in the restaurant business for six years and is aware of his manner round tight cooking areas:
  • You needn’t lay the whole lot out such as you’re presenting a cooking present. “I think there’s this notion that you always need to cook via mise en place, where everything is all spread out and ready to go,” Gilbertson says. “Take what you need off the shelf, use it, and put it away.”
  • Clean up as you prepare dinner. Got a spare minute when you’re ready for a sauce to scale back in the skillet? Wipe down that counter. Toss out these eggshells. It’s not only a chef’s and line prepare dinner’s secret to creating cleanup much less intimidating and soul-sucking afterward. It’ll additionally reduce down on the muddle that builds up by the time you are completed making your meal.
  • If you are sharing your cramped kitchen, it is necessary to speak every time one or each of you might be dealing with meals, pots, or cooking utensils. Just say “behind” loudly whenever you’re passing any person in the kitchen who’s wielding that cleaver or dealing with that colander of scorching pasta.

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