8 Unexpected Kitchen Storage Ideas Guaranteed to Whet Your Appetite

sleek kitchen storage idea in island with waterfall marble countertop framing dark wood cabinetry
credit: Tom Robertson

We all know how hard it is to find extra storage. Seriously, how is it possible to accumulate SO MUCH stuff throughout your life? So needless to say, making use of every square inch of space in your home is vital to ensure a tidy, organized space, especially when it comes to the heart of the home, also known as the kitchen.

While open shelving and built-in cabinets are the obvious options, we've scoured the internet for some less noticeable ways to store your trove of cookbooks and seemingly never-ending supply of dish towels. Let these eight unexpected kitchen storage ideas whet your appetite.

1. Add a rail.

Okay, so perhaps not the most unexpected kitchen storage idea, but we think it's crazy that simple storage updates such as this aren't considered when designing kitchens. It's time to make use of all that wall space, people! A rail that runs along a backsplash is ideal for hanging utensils, pots, aprons, and anything else you might need to have ready at your fingertips when cooking or entertaining.

2. Make use of literally every square inch.

modern kitchen storage idea with clever storage above and to the side of the stove
credit: Hearth Studio

Tight on drawer or counter space? No problem. Utilize the sides of cabinetry with magnetic strips for knives and carve out a niche to stash olive oil and pinch pots for salt and pepper. This design by Hearth Studio has even made use of the space over the stovetop to stash pots and pans.

3. Use retractable or pull out doors.

kitchen storage idea with built-in pantry closet with retractable doors and pull out drawers
credit: Brayer Design

Small kitchen cabinets don't really benefit anyone, so why not go all out and incorporate a to-die-for pantry closet in your built-ins? And then top it off with retractable doors to hide your organized canisters of organic quinoa and steel cut oats. While you're at it, throw in a few pull-out drawers for extra storage.

4. Go high or go home.

We're all used to seeing a lot of unused space above our cabinets, but this kitchen design by Emily Henderson is a picture-perfect lesson in why we shouldn't take that space for granted. Go the extra mile when it comes to your cabinetry, and build it out from the floor to the ceiling. And you can bet everyone will be drooling over the integrated ladder, too.

5. Free up counter space and create a coffee station.

hidden kitchen storage idea for coffee station with pull out drawers
credit: Eyeswoon

Making a cup of joe in the morning can be a messy business, and we don't know about you, but we don't always want to (or have time to) clean it up. Athena Calderone from Eyeswoon has a java station with retractable doors, which means that spilled coffee grounds everywhere are no longer a thing, or at least no longer a thing that you need to look at every day.

6. Hide your home office behind closed doors.

hidden office kitchen storage idea with shelving and desk
credit: 2LG Studio

Your kitchen isn't just for food! We all know that it can be one of the most light-filled areas of a home, so popping an office in the mix actually makes a lot of sense. The team over at 2LG Studio, in collaboration with John Lewis of Hungerford, hid their office space within kitchen cabinetry — and now we're left wondering why we didn't think of it first.

7. Sit on it!

When you have to squeeze your dining quarters into your kitchen, you have no choice but to get creative with storage like the team over at Haptic Architects did in this cozy setup. They saved space by opting for a custom dining bench with built-in storage instead of two extra chairs. And, now there is plenty of room to stash your ever-growing collection of linens and vintage napkin holders.

8. Hide extra cabinetry in your kitchen island.

sleek kitchen storage idea in island with waterfall marble countertop framing dark wood cabinetry
credit: Tom Robertson

Islands take up a lotta room in a kitchen and often harbor a lot of dead space. Make sure you make the most of your kitchen island by creating a multi-functional piece with room to sit, store, and prepare culinary masterpieces — just like this beautiful design by Tom Robertson. Remember, an island is not just for displaying your favorite tomes. It should also provide extra drawer and cabinet space.

Where to Shop for Kitchen Storage Ideas:

It's not just about the design of your kitchendon't forget about the accessories, too. Shop some of our favorite places for storage items below and give your culinary space a stylish organizational update.

From spice racks to pot holders to kitchen cabinet and drawer organizers, you're sure to find some valuable storage at Bed Bath & Beyond. There's a whole section that's just as organized as you could wish for any kitchen.

The Container Store promises space saving solutions with the added value of an organized life. The kitchen starter kits are a great way to start tackling your storage woes.

Organizing your cook space really needn't be expensive, so head to your local Walmart and grab yourself a bargain from its huge selection of kitchen storage supplies. You can add a wine rack, sink accessories, and food storage containers to your cart without breaking the bank.


Emma Jane Palin

Emma Jane Palin

Emma Jane Palin is a multi-award-winning blogger and freelance writer with a penchant for design and interiors.