How to declutter a small kitchen – ways to streamline your cooking space with ease

A small kitchen can easily become cluttered and disorganized, making cooking a chore. However, with some simple decluttering tips and organizational hacks, you can transform your tiny kitchen into an efficient workspace. This article provides useful guidance on streamlining a small cooking space for maximum functionality and comfort.

Take stock of your kitchen items

The first step is to take stock of everything you currently store in your kitchen. Make a list and identify items you:

  • Use frequently
  • Rarely or never use
  • Could store elsewhere

Get rid of any duplicates, damaged, expired or unnecessary items. Be ruthless and honest about what you actually need to keep in your cooking space.

Organize with storage containers

Invest in clear plastic containers, baskets and storage bins to corral items and make better use of cabinet and drawer space. Label each container so you know exactly what’s inside without opening.

  • Stackable containers are great for bulky items like baking pans.
  • Slide-out drawer organizers can neatly store cutlery and utensils.
  • Under-shelf baskets provide extra space for lesser-used items.

Take advantage of vertical space

In a small kitchen, make use of vertical storage space with wall-mounted racks, shelves, hooks and magnetic strips. Mount a knife rack, paper towel holder and frequently used utensils on the wall to free up counter space.

Install extra shelves in cabinets for more storage. Use shelf risers or vertical dividers to double your storage capacity.

Store less frequently used items elsewhere

Keep only the essentials you use for everyday cooking within the kitchen. Relocate any extra or rarely used appliances, servingware or gadgets to other areas of your home.

Consider storing these items in:

  • Basement or garage
  • Dining room buffet
  • Hall closet
  • Under beds

Rotate seasonal items as needed.

Multitask with dual-purpose furniture

Since space is limited, choose furniture and organizers that serve more than one function.

  • A rolling cart can provide extra counter area and storage.
  • Back-of-door storage racks add space for spices, utensils and towels.
  • A breakfast bar with stools provides a place to eat and extra counter space for food prep.

De-clutter counters

Keep your counters clear by storing small appliances inside cabinets and only leaving out essentials like a coffeemaker. Use wall-mounted racks or shelves for frequently used items like spices, oils, utensils.

Ensure you have containers to corral loose items like sugar packets, tea bags and cooking utensils. Declutter completely each night before bed.

Utilize your pantry

Maximize every inch of existing shelving and storage space within your pantry. Use door racks, turntables and multi-tiered shelving. Organize with bins and baskets.

Store snacks, cans, mixes and other dry goods on higher shelves. Reserve lower shelves for heavier items or things you use more frequently.

Shop for space-saving tools

When replacing worn-out tools and appliances, look for space-saving options. Some helpful picks include:

  • Collapsible colander
  • Magnetic spice tins
  • Stackable mixing bowls
  • Folding dish rack
  • Hand blender rather than food processor
  • Multi-use pressure cooker instead of several appliances

Maintain the system

Once you’ve organized your kitchen, make a habit of putting items back in their designated storage spots after each use. Do a quick 10-minute tidy at the end of each day and a deep clean-out session every few months to maintain order.

Staying on top of the clutter will ensure your small kitchen remains streamlined for cooking and entertaining!

FAQs about Decluttering a Small Kitchen

How can I create more storage in my tiny kitchen?

  • Install extra shelves in existing cabinets.
  • Use wall-mounted racks, hooks, shelves and magnetic strips.
  • Buy furniture with built-in storage like a kitchen cart or breakfast bar.
  • Add tiered shelving units or slide-out drawers.
  • Use hanging pots and pans racks.

What are the best storage containers for a small kitchen?

  • Clear plastic bins and baskets so you can easily see contents
  • Matching stackable containers for a uniform look
  • Glass jars for non-perishable dry goods
  • Slide-out drawers and trays for deep cabinets
  • Under-shelf hanging baskets for extra space

Where can I store overflow kitchen items outside the kitchen?

  • Hall closet or coat closet
  • Basement, attic or garage
  • Spare bedroom closet
  • Laundry room shelves
  • Under beds
  • Dining room buffet
  • Living room built-ins

How often should I purge unused items from my small kitchen?

  • Do a big decluttering session at least once a year.
  • Quickly review shelves and cabinets every 1-2 months.
  • Get rid of any duplicates, expired or unnecessary items.
  • If you don’t use it at least once a season, donate or trash it.

What are space-saving alternatives for bulky appliances?

  • Hand blender instead of food processor
  • Electric skillet instead of microwave
  • Slow cooker instead of oven
  • Pressure cooker instead of rice cooker or steamer
  • Coffee maker that can share counter space with other items


Decluttering a cramped kitchen takes some effort and commitment. But implementing organized storage solutions can help maximize every inch of space. Focus on keeping just the essentials within the kitchen and stashing lesser-used items elsewhere. Multitasking furniture and vertical storage are key. Maintain order with regular purging and tidy-up sessions. With some creativity and planning, even the tiniest kitchen can become an efficient and inviting environment!