A few simple changes that turned a mess of herbs and spices into an organized and pretty spice drawer. Spice drawer organization part 1 and part 2 (a recent update to make everything even more organized). Easy ways to get your kitchen organized!
I LOVE using a spice drawer to organise all my herbs and spices! I find it makes it easy to access what I need for cooking and they don’t take as much space when you have a small kitchen, like I do.
Want to organize your spices in a spice rack? Check out… Beautiful Spice Rack Ideas
How To Organize Your Spices In A Spice Drawer (Part 1)
I had been storing spices in a drawer in the kitchen for so many years, that I didn’t notice how grotty the spice drawer had become. My storage containers were mismatched which limited what I could fit in the drawer. Some of the jar lids had started to rust. Some spices were kept in the original packaging because of lack of room. Ok, it really was time to declutter and organise the spice drawer!
Step 1. Choose Your Storage Jars
I cook with spices a lot! So I knew I wanted the biggest size jars I could fit in the drawer I had. I also worked out, from looking at what I use regularly, that I needed to fit approximately 20 spice jars.
Here’s My List Of Spices (the ones I use regularly):
- Ground Cumin
- Cumin Seeds
- Fenugreek Seeds
- Ground Coriander
- Green Cardamon Pods
- Black Cardamon Pods
- Ground Cinnamon
- Cinnamon Bark
- Whole Cloves
- Bay Leaves
- Crushed Chilli
- Whole Peppercorns
- Turmeric Powder
- Black Mustard Seeds
- Italian Herbs
In the end I went with these 500ml glass jars with a tin chalkboard style lid from Kmart. I love the large size. Only $2 each! Woohoo!!
To achieve a similar look with plain glass jars, you could easily buy a set of blank or printed chalk board labels. Check out these spice jar labels!
Step 2. Declutter!
Ok this is freebie spice storage at its best! Re-use vegemite jars, baby food jars, and whatever else.
Take everything out of the drawer first. Then wipe down the space. Spices such as tumeric powder, always seem to leave a mess behind!
Discard any herbs and spices that are simply too old and have lost their flavour and aroma. Check best before dates or do the smell test. Check out exactly how to store spices and how what the smell test is.
Then take all your herbs and spices out of their existing containers or original plastic packaging and put into the new storage jars. One for each type of spice or herb.
Step 3. Label Your Spices
Depending how often you use your spices and how many you have, you may want to label your new spice jars as you go. I didn’t do that and I had to go back and sniff a few to tell the cumin apart from the coriander. I used the cute chalk pencil, that came with my jars, to write the contents on top of the lids. Didn’t cost anything extra!
An Organized Spice Drawer…
I love how my spice drawer turned out! It looks so much neater and just functions better too. No more spices in lots of different packets and storage containers. Everything is air tight!
That is until it starts looking like this… Read on to find out a few easy changes I made recently to my spice drawer.
Spice Drawer Organization (Part 2)
I had cleaned out the spice drawer several times since I had first set it all up. However one annoying thing about the DIY chalk labels on the top of the jars is that they would rub off. So I decided it was time to stick on spice jar labels.
First though, no more newspaper! I found this cute cardstock in my scrapbooking supplies from the days when I had lots of time and I used to scrapbook. Cost: FREE!!
Next I needed a few more spice jars. The large jars I used are no longer available so I went with these 330ml jars from Kmart.
Everything cleaned and returned to the drawer. Unfortunately, despite lots of scrubbing a little bit of the original chalk labels was still visible. I did throw out a couple of spices that I hadn’t used much and did not pass the smell test.
Add then to add pretty vinyl spice jar labels… These are the spice labels I got. I bought a pack of 20 plus 1 extra label which I could customise for the herbs and spices I use.
Also check out more options for Spice Jar Labels.
Simple changes can make a big difference!