Welcome to part two of the Solution to the Cabinet Chaos – How to organize your spice cabinet!
The Spice Cabinets
Variety may be the spice of life, but disorganization is NOT! Especially if it’s in your spice cabinet!
I’m almost embarrassed to show you these two before photos. After forgetting to take one of the pantry project, I wanted to make sure I include some from now on, even if it is embarrassing. 😉
Don’t you just love a good before and after photo? I sure do! It makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something!
When I updated the kitchen a few years ago I also reorganized the cabinets at that time. Most of them have stayed relatively tidy, but the spice cabinets, on the other hand, did not. Do you have a problem with this as well, or is it just me? Why did I let it get so bad???
Prior to this project, I couldn’t find ANYTHING in these two spice cabinets without having to move stuff around. It was a constant battle not to knock stuff over or out of the cabinet. I couldn’t deal with the mess any longer.
Something you might want to consider in your own kitchen is when you use up a spice to try and replace it with an organic option. I’ve been doing this for over a year with mine since I’ve been trying to choose healthier options for my family.
From what I’ve noticed, the organic options are not any more expensive than the traditional spices. The quality and flavor of these healthier choices have been excellent. Kroger has a nice selection as does Vitacost (an online store).
Fresh is best!
Several years ago I created an organic herb garden right outside my back door that I absolutely love and use regularly. It’s awesome to go out and cut what I need when preparing a meal.
Nothing beats fresh in my opinion! Several of these herb plants come back year after year and there are a few that need to be replanted each spring. I enjoy gardening so I don’t mind tending this group of pots year round.
Let the organizing commence!
Since I knew this was going to be my next project, I kept a lookout for things that could help me organize these spice cabinets. I was pleased when I picked up these two wire spice racks at Ross for such a reasonable price.
Then I found this bamboo one at a resale shop for $1.99. It still had the original label on it! I knew I was going to need tiered shelves so I could see the containers better so I was very pleased when I found these.
Unloading, sorting, and Organizing…
I could not believe how much I had crammed into the main spice cabinet! Once it was all out on the island it didn’t seem as overwhelming to sort through.
There were also quite a few things in there that were better suited to be in the pantry or in the secondary spice cabinet. At some point, it must have been easier for me to just put them in here instead of where they were supposed to be!
I promised myself that once this was done, I would make a point to put stuff back where it actually goes! I’ve been pretty good about doing that in my pantry since I worked so hard overhauling that mess not once, but twice! (She says as she pats herself on her back!)
The fun part was sorting through all of these things! I find it is easiest if I put like sizes and similar items together. This helps when I go to put the items back in the cabinet. I also checked expiration dates at this time.
Needless to say, I was not so pleased with myself when I found I had SEVERAL duplicate containers of multiple spices! Thankfully, they are ones I use regularly so they won’t expire before they will be used.
I opted to create a small storage container for the spice cabinet that I labeled “extra spices”. I will be sure I check here before buying any replacements. 🙂
I was relieved that there were only 3 containers of spices that had expired! These were almost gone anyway, so I didn’t feel bad about tossing them out. One had expired almost 4 years ago…WHAT?! I washed these spice containers and put them with the others I’ve been saving for different up-cycling projects.
The Main Spice Cabinet
Once everything was sorted I put the 3 spice racks into the main cabinet. I opted to place both of the wire spice racks on the bottom shelf and the bamboo spice rack on the second shelf. This allowed me to group the spices I use most frequently towards the front of the wire spice racks.
Then the spices I use less frequently I put up on the higher tiers of the rack. I also grouped baking spices together for easy access.
Then on the bamboo rack, I placed different seasoning blends and larger jars. To the right of this rack, I grouped the jars of bouillon, honey, and nutritional yeast.
On the shelf above this, I placed the larger containers of cornstarch, ghee, and coconut oil. I put the container I created for the extra spices here as well as the clothespins we use for clipping bags shut.
On the very top shelf I placed the kitchen gadgets I don’t use very often.
The Secondary Spice Cabinet
This one was much easier to sort as it didn’t have near as much stuff in it! I used the same principle in sorting this one as I did the first.
The frequently used items are on the bottom shelf, etc. and the top shelf is holding the seldom-used kitchen gadgets I just can’t part with.
I realized when I added the before and after photos to this post that I actually have these opposite to what they are in my kitchen!
The main spice cabinet shown above is actually on the right side of my microwave. And the secondary cabinet shown below is really on the left of the microwave. You can actually see the microwave in the first picture at the beginning of this post! Hahahaha!
I truly hope you found this post helpful in organizing your own spice cabinets! Let me know what you have tried in your own kitchen and what you found worked best. I am always open to trying new ways to organize things.
If you love up-cycling like I do, start saving all your empty glass spice containers for craft projects! They don’t take up much space and can be used in so many different projects.
I will be sharing several easy to do projects with you soon using these glass spice containers. Thanks again for stopping in!
So what’s next on the blog?
The Pink Sisterhood ~ Part 3. My breast cancer battle continues.