Is your overstuffed small kitchen giving you anxiety? Don’t worry! There are plenty of ways you can learn to maximize space in a small kitchen!

By clearing out everything you don’t need and creating organized storage systems, you’ll have far more space.

You’ll be able to cook more easily, you won’t make as much of a mess, and you will love spending time in your tiny kitchen when your space is optimized!

Here are my top 10 tips for how to maximize the space in your small kitchen so it doesn’t feel so cramped anymore.

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small white kitchen with utensils, knives, dish rack on backsplash is a good example of how to maximize space in a small kitchen

Maximize the Space in Your Small Kitchen With These Tips:

Do Away With Duplicates

The first step in maximizing the space in your kitchen is to get rid of things you don’t need.

This might seem like the hardest step, but really, getting rid of what you don’t want anymore is one of the fastest, easiest and cheapest ways to make more space for what you do need or want to keep in the kitchen.

I’m all about frugality in the kitchen, but there really is no point in having five different spatulas “in case one breaks” when you’re short on space! Pick the best one and throw away the others or donate them.

This rule actually applies to everything in your kitchen.

Decluttering isn’t just good for your mental health (yes, really!). It’s good for your kitchen too. You don’t have to come up with storage solutions for items you don’t even need anyway.

If this resonates with you, you might also like:
Minimalist Kitchen List: Your Essential Tools Checklist
The Kitchen Essentials List You NEED
Essential Minimalist Kitchen Knives: How Many Do You Actually Need?
Minimalist Kitchen Organization Ideas to Get Your Kitchen Under Control
4 Signs You Need to Declutter Your Kitchen

Put Untapped Space to Work 

under cabinet mug organizer

Toe kick drawers under your kitchen’s base cabinets will put space that generally goes to waste behind baseboards to use. It’s quite simple to retrofit the majority of standard base cabinets to create toe-kick drawers. This is a perfect place to store thin items that aren’t used daily like cooking sheets or cookbooks.

You might also optimize the vertical space on cabinet shelves by adding shelf racks and organizers to create another layer of storage.

You could even add hooks at the bottom of an upper shelf to hang mugs or wine glasses off of.

Add Counter Space to a Small Kitchen By Adding a Cutting Board Over Your Sink 

over sink cutting board bamboo

If the counter space in your kitchen is not optimal like it is in many small kitchens, consider an over-the-sink cutting board.

These will create a flexible additional counter space for when you’re preparing your food. They also come in handy to cover dirty dishes in the sink to help your space look a bit less cluttered.

Get one that allows you to rinse items before you start chopping and you’ll save time when you’re in the kitchen too. 

Use the Space Around Your Fridge 

side of fridge storage rack for small spaces

If you’ve got some space between your fridge and the wall in your tiny kitchen, take advantage of this potential storage space.

Add some magnetic hooks to hold your broom or apron, or consider installing a hidden rolling pantry for small non-perishable items like canned goods. You can get narrow rolling pantries that are only about 6″-10″ wide so measure how much space you have then find one that fits your needs.

Build a Display Rack on an Unused Wall

wall mounted kitchen storage organizer

A wall mounted display rack can be a very attractive storage solution to maximize space in a small kitchen.

It works especially well for oversized items like cutting boards and serving platters because you can store them flush against the wall without having to stack them inside a crowded cupboard.

A display rack like this stores items facing outwards so you can show off their patterns and prints instead of artwork, and the rack is much narrower than a traditional shelf.

Clear Your Kitchen Counters

Your kitchen will immediately appear more spacious if your counters are clear of clutter. Plus your space will be a lot more functional when you can actually use the space that’s available!

So, get rid of anything you don’t use and put away the items that you use infrequently. This includes appliances. 

Ideally, your countertops should only store the things that you need at arm’s length most days of the week. It’s time to get motivated and create a space you like being in, and this is an easy way to begin.

Create a Backsplash That Does Double-Duty

Multifunctional Hanging Aluminum Utensil holder

Installing a backsplash with accessories can help you make the most of minimal space in your kitchen, especially if you’re short on drawer or counter space.

For example, storing the kitchen utensils you use most often on your backsplash keeps your counters clear but still keeps all your commonly used items handy.

You might like a magnetic knife rack, a utensil bar, or a hanging spice rack.

Turn Your Junk Drawer Into a Spice Rack

spice drawer organizer for small space

The humble drawer should not be overlooked when it comes to maximizing your space.

Most kitchens have at least one that’s been designated to hold the household’s random odds and ends, but this is a huge waste of precious real estate! Toss out what you don’t need and make room for what you do.

Even if you still need a space like a junk drawer for those random things, they probably don’t need to be stored in the kitchen.

Try to find another place in your home for them then transform your junk drawer into a horizontal spice rack instead.

You’ll be able to free up some much-needed cabinet space and keep all the seasonings you love to use within easy reach.

Decant Your Pantry Items 

small kitchen food storage bins clear airtight

Not having a pantry doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Using pantry storage containers to store items can help you make the most of the storage space you have. 

Flour, pasta, rice, sugar, snack foods, and other pantry staples all come in differently sized packages.

Invest in some pantry storage containers that fit well in your cupboard and decant some of the oddly shaped pantry items into them.

This method is excellent for keeping your kitchen and pantry organized. No more accidentally spilling food from bags that aren’t properly closed or digging through a bunch of stuff to find the one thing you’re looking for.

Read: Mini Pantry Purge Challenge

You may find that your new storage system ends up saving your family a lot of money on food in the long run, too. 

Open Shelves Are Your Friend

industrial floating kitchen shelves save space

Open shelving in your tiny kitchen will give you easy access to the items you use often and can also give your space a very stylish feel when done right.

If you’re someone who entertains often or loves cooking, there really is nothing more convenient than having whatever items you need visible and easy to grab. It works perfectly for an aesthetic coffee bar setup as well!

Plus, if your kitchen is really tiny, open shelves help avoid banging your head or shin on an open cupboard door!

Maintain the New Maximized Space in Your Small Kitchen

By decluttering and maximizing the space in your small kitchen with user-friendliness in mind, you’ve already taken the first step toward keeping it that way. 

When things are set up in a way that is logical and easy to use, you’ll find it easier to maintain it over time!

These habits will ensure that you don’t start collecting useless items again before you’ve even had the chance to enjoy your new kitchen space! 

Now that you’re on a roll, apply your new space-making rules to the rest of your house if necessary and make cuts in your day-to-day life as well. Practice digital minimalism: Cancel subscriptions you don’t use, set up a spam filter for your email, texts, and telephone calls, and schedule downtime where you’re offline and in the moment. 

Author Bio: Alexandra Emmert is an editor at, a resource for canceling any subscription on the planet. She covers topics ranging from budgeting and minimalism to productivity and business management.

Keep Reading:
How to Create a Simple Kitchen You’ll Love
12 Effortless Kitchen Organization Tips You Need to Try Before You Give Up
Hygge Kitchen: Perfectly Cozy Lifestyle Design Ideas
Minimalist Kitchen Organization Ideas to Get Your Kitchen Under Control
Minimalist Pantry Labels (Cute & Organized!)

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