They say that variety is the spice of life—so what does that make a variety of spices?
Well, it certainly makes for a cluttered cupboard. Between the tiny bottles, the jars of different sizes, and the open, half-empty packets of spices spilling into your cupboard, stashing your spices in the containers they come in typically results in a busy cupboard, where it’s impossible to find the spice that you’re actually looking for.
There are more than a few advantages to having a properly organized spice cabinet. First, it’s visually pleasing: having a uniform storing system simply looks a lot better than mismatched vessels. It’s also much more convenient: who else has accidentally bought a second bottle of a certain spice because they didn’t know they already had it at the back of the cupboard? Guilty as charged. Finally, storing your spices properly means they will last a lot longer, saving you a pretty penny in the long term.
Here are 7 ideas to inspire an organized storage solution for your spices.
The Frequent User Solution
If you tend to use a lot of different spices, you’ll want a system that ensures that you don’t have to fish into the back of your cupboard, emptying half of its contents to find what you’re looking for.
A spice drawer is the perfect solution. Dedicate a drawer in your kitchen entirely to spices, and store them in uniform jars in the drawer. Be sure that your jars have large enough lids: since you’ll be looking at them from above, not from the side, you’ll need to label the lids of your spices.
The Long-Lasting Solution
Spices last longest in a cool, dark, dry place—like your freezer. If you invest in quality spices, consider storing them in your icebox. If you opt for this approach, keep the spices together in an easy-to-reach spot, like one of the inside shelves on the freezer door. The goal is not to have to empty your entire freezer to find that turmeric!
The Space-Saving Solution
Is there a shortage of real estate in your kitchen? Utilize vertical space and store your jars in a spice rack. Keep everything tucked away by installing the spice rack on the inside of a cupboard or pantry door.
The Innovative Solution
If you’re a fan of high-tech kitchen gadgets and aren’t afraid of a little DIY, try a magnetic spice rack.
There are many ways to interpret this idea. To begin, purchase a set of small, uniform containers that are relatively lightweight. You want to choose containers with lids that are very secure.
You can affix strong magnets to the base of each container, and simply store the spices sideways on your fridge. Or, you can install a metal strip on the bottom of a cupboard, then attach magnets to the lids of your spice containers: your magnetic spices can hang in space below the cupboard, taking up minimal space elsewhere in your kitchen.
The Self-Contained Solution
You might find that you tend to use certain spices in different situations: spices for baking, spices for marinades, spices for Indian dishes, etc. If this sounds familiar, try grouping like spices together, and storing each group in its own cookie tin. Tins can be labeled by category and stacked together. When you’re cooking a particular dish, you can just pull out the appropriate spice tin, instead of rattling through your whole collection.
The Scientific Solution
Looking for a different way to display your spices? Store them in individual test tubes, organized into test tube racks!
This is a totally different idea that will fit perfectly into a cutting edge kitchen. You won’t be able to hold back a smile every time you reach for the cinnamon.
The Inexpensive Solution
Thoroughly cleaned baby jars are the perfect solution to storing your spices on a budget. The jars are just the right size, have wide enough mouths to dip a teaspoon into, and are perfectly uniform, making storage and stacking much easier. Label your jars with the contents by simply writing on the jar with a permanent marker. Prefer to buy your spices in bulk? Mason jars are another easy, cost-effective solution.
Whatever solution you choose, remember to store your spices in a place that is cool, dry, and out of direct light. Lids should always be airtight to ensure freshness. Bon appetit!