9 Ways to Get More Storage Out of a Kitchen That's Short on Cabinets

9 Ways to Get More Storage Out of a Kitchen That's Short on Cabinets

Caroline Biggs
Feb 15, 2018

Tiny kitchens can be tough for a lot of reasons. Along with cramped countertops and puny appliances, a small cooking space often means you're stuck with little to no cabinets for storage. Throw in the fact that you're renting (and can't make permanent changes to your place) and things can start to look really dismal.

Thankfully, with a little scheming, you can turn your skimpy kitchen into a stylishly organized (and storage-savvy) place. Forget that you only have two drawers and some under-sink space! There are still plenty of ways to carve out more storage — no contractor necessary. Read on for nine of our favorite ideas for keeping your kitchen organized when you aren't working with a lot of cabinetry.

(Image credit: Devon Jarvis)

1. Make smart use of a rolling cart.

If you aren't already hip to the magic of mobile storage then now's the time to listen up. Along with being super cute and affordable, rolling carts can carry everything from cleaning supplies to condiments, and can squeeze into your kitchen just about anywhere.

Get some ideas: 10 Smart Ways to Use IKEA's RÅSKOG Cart in the Kitchen

(Image credit: The Container Store)

2. Double your cabinets with stacking shelves.

Funny how something as simple as an extra shelf can make or break your storage situation. Stacking shelves (like the ones above from The Container Store) are an easy — and inexpensive — way to create extra room inside your small cabinets without taking up any additional space.

Buy: Large Bamboo Stackable Shelf, $18 at The Container Store

(Image credit: I Heart Organizing)

3. Use bins!

This uber-organized pantry setup is from I Heart Organizing and while it features drawers, which you may or may not have, it's a good reminder that bins do the same thing that drawers do. Put some on a shelf and pull it out as needed.

Go shopping: InterDesign Cabinet Binz, from $11 at Bed Bath & Beyond

4. Hang some curtain rods.

Who would've guessed that curtain rods could ever be so multi-functional? Hang a few ones above your oven to hold all of your favorite pots and pans or slide a couple of tension rods under your sink for some unexpected storage.

(Image credit: Devon Jarvis)

5. Create a pegboard wall.

Resourceful and surprisingly stylish, pegboards are a snazzy way to stay organized when you aren't working with a ton of cabinetry in your kitchen. And although hanging one might leave you with a few unsightly holes in your wall, it's nothing some spackle can't fix before you move out.

Get the steps: The Great Kitchen Pegboard: How to Build and Hang the Ultimate Kitchen Storage Solution

(Image credit: Sarita Relis Photography)

6. Add a (mobile) island.

Much like a rolling cart, mobile islands are a cunning approach to creating more storage space in your compact kitchen. Plus, you'll get more of that oh-so-valuable counter space.

7. Use an open shelving unit.

While it may seem like a no brainer, open shelving units are a smart (and sturdy way) to forge more kitchen storage when you're lacking cabinet space. Place a sleek one in a tight corner, along a narrow wall, or even in a nearby room and show off all your cool dishes in style.

8. Get a drying rack that doubles as a shelf.

A wall-mounted shelf that doubles as a drying rack kills two birds with one stone. And if you're worried about leaving behind holes, fret not. They're super easy to patch up in a pinch.

Buy: GRUNDTAL Dry Rack, $27 at IKEA

(Image credit: Pablo Enriquez)

9. Use your oven (really!).

It might sound cliché but ovens are in fact a clever way to create more room for storage in a tiny kitchen. You can stash your cutting boards and baking sheets without using up any cabinet space and look slightly more cosmopolitan for doing so.

This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: 9 Ways to Organize a Kitchen Without Many (or Any!) Cabinets

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