Surviving A Small Kitchen

If you can’t tell, my kitchen sees a LOT of action each day.

muffins on a cooling rackBut what you don’t see, is how SMALL my kitchen is. Seriously, it’s tiny.

What it lacks in size, counter space and cabinets, though… I’ve compensated for through some serious organization.

And lots of help from IKEA.

Care to take a peek?

vita mix blender on a counterWhile I love the open floor plan of our apartment, I could have really used another cabinet for storage… so I added a shelf! It’s holds all of my mason jars nicely, and still leaves plenty of room below for my Vita-Mix, along with some usable counter-space.

In my mason jars, I store a variety of nuts, dried fruits, grains and flours.

mason jars filled with nuts, grains, and berriesAll easy to grab when I need them!

Over my stove, I keep many of my cooking essentials within reach, too.

measuring cups hanging on hooksMeasuring cups, my nut-milk bag, measuring spoons, and the spices that I use most often.

On the wall next to my stove, I keep even more tools handy!

cooling mits hanging on hooksI hung another bar, with hooks, from IKEA–> which holds some lids, oven mitts, my cooling rack (which doubles as a “drying rack” for my juicer parts!), and my new mandolin!

(I finally was brave enough to buy this mandolin after training with Doris. She says it’s the best!!)

Over my sink, I’ve hung yet another bar. Are we seeing a theme here?

towels and scub brush hanging on a rackI keep my cutting boards handy, along with a towel, vegetable wash and scrubby brush.

And to make sure not an inch of wall-space goes unused, I’ve even hung my trivets!

coffee maker, jar, and paper towels on the counterIf you have pretty trivets, why not hang them like a decoration, right?

Austin and I recently created some extra-room in our kitchen, too– by ditching our microwave! It used to sit on top of our fridge, but I’ve wanted to get rid of it for a while now… and Austin finally agreed. I love having the extra storage space!

containers filled with food suppliesMore containers from IKEA– organizing Yasha’s treats, my baking supplies, and lots of other randomness.

You might have also heard me whine about mention our teeny-tiny fridge situation.

storage bins on a shelfWe’ve held onto our ridiculously small fridge, because it leaves us all this extra storage space that we can fill on the side!

These little bins hold my spices, oils & vinegars, and small kitchen appliances (like my Spiralizer)!

plastic container filled with spices(Writing on the lids of my spices makes finding what I need easy!)

Most recently, I also made the executive decision to move my dehydrator out of the kitchen!

dehydrater with serving pans on topI found a little side table that holds it perfectly on the bottom shelf, so it’s out of my way until I need it. Perhaps it’s not the prettiest way to store it, but function trumps style when you’ve got a small living space!

(Also, I’m kinda dumb for ordering such a large dehydrator in the first place. If I had been smarter, I would have ordered the 5-tray model, which would be easier to find space for!)

Live and learn, I guess.

Despite the small space, I’m pretty happy with how everything is organized and easy to find. My streamlined kitchen makes it easier to prepare and enjoy meals, like this, on a regular basis.

plate of saladLast night’s dinner: Massaged Kale Salad, Thai Coconut Soup, and Spicy “Tuna” Rolls!

Followed by Korean Yam & Ginger pudding, and a hefty dose of Downton Abbey. (our new favorite TV show, thanks to Netflix streaming!)

Reader Feedback: Do you have to deal with a small living space? Any organization tips you’d like to share?

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Comments

Food Babe

Love how you got rid of your microwave… I really want to get rid of mine too – but it’s “built” in – I’ve always wanted to store stuff in there, but I’m afraid someone would turn it on and my kitchen would blow up 🙂

Kilee

You are so organized! I can tell your kitchen gets a lot of use and having a small fridge just means frequent trips to the store and market for fresh veggies. I’ll use any excuse to go to the grocery store or farmers market!

Emily

We have a small kitchen too. We can fit most things in the cupboards and the way we cope is just to keep everything minimal and shop regularly. If it makes you feel any better about your dehydrator, I heard that the 9 tray is more efficient than the 5 tray 🙂

Wendy

I have to try your spicy tuna roll recipe- love the concept and idea. Built in microwaves help and keeping the appliances in cabinet areas. I love to have my counter space.

Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

Looks like you’ve got organization down to a science!! My kitchen isn’t that small, but I still lack space for all my gadgets, plates etc. I’ve got straw baskets to hide some things away, but could always to with some more hidden storage (I can’t stand looking at clutter!)

LizAshlee

We have a fairly small space, but not too bad-definitely manageable! Great organization skills! I love Ikea!!!

Amber Shea @Almost Vegan

Man, I could take some lessons from you on organizing my tiny kitchen! Mine’s unbearable; I can’t wait to move. My dehydrator is on top of the microwave (oh the irony), which is on top of a little side table near the kitchen table, which is not even IN the kitchen!

Does your Excalibur have the temp controls and 26-hour timer? See, I got a 5-tray one before I ever dreamed I’d be writing cookbooks, and ever since, I’ve been wishing I got the 9-tray! If yours has the same controls, and you ever want to trade, let me know!

Sara Maples

How inspiring! Your kitchen looks great, and so well organized!

Talia @ Bite Size Wellness

My tiny NYC apartment could use some organization lessons from you. I hope IKEA appreciates you buying out the store:)

Tamara Lukie

Yahoo for ditching the Microwave!!! We’re going on 6 years without it & I don’t miss it a bit! (don’t know what I would do with one now actually).
Love the organization you’ve got going on too!
T

Sabijo

I love that you shared your organization system! I find the swiveling trays very helpful inside cabinets, and the IKEA hooks great for the walls (I use mine for cooking utensils).

Probably the two smartest moves for small kitches are adding shelves to the walls, and getting rid of a hug microwave! I have yet to claim that extra space. 🙂

andrea

okay this could be a huuuuuge kitchen with all kinds of pictures taken from who knows where – back up and take a photo of the kitchen and post it – then maybe………

Heather Hacque

Just a suggestion, why not take a gorgeous fabric and cover the table that the dehydrator is stored under. That way, the table looks like a table with the lovely trays and vase and the dehydrator is just out of sight…and Voila! Double duty decorative table!!

Heather Hacque

P.S. I forgot to mention that I love the way that you organized your kitchen and added the shelving!! I live in Paris, in a good sized apartment, with a closed French kitchen. I also have to be very conscious of space and so we too have use our space judiciously. I’ve got the same Ikea white bins and they’re great! Luv, luv, luv your blog…I’m new at the LCHF lifestyle so I’m eager to learn new recipes…thanks for posting!!!

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