Reader G. submitted the following to Ask Unclutterer:
I was wondering what you thought of spice racks? I was thinking of purchasing one, but I see a lot of of options and some seem bulky, expensive and unappealing. I am a recent college graduate with a small kitchen in a one bedroom apartment, I’m struggling with space in my kitchen. I may need a kitchen cart and other things too.
I’m not the biggest fan of traditional spice racks. Mostly, I dislike them because they encourage purchasing less-than-stellar spices, take up an unnecessary amount of space, and they encourage storing spices you don’t actually use. Also, spices should be stored in a dark, dry location and many spice racks are made to be out on a counter where the spices will quickly lose their flavor.
I encourage you to simply attach two metal strips to the inside of your pantry door or a kitchen cabinet door. Then, as you purchase good spices from a gourmet grocer or an online store like Penzeys Spices, just stick adhesive magnet tape to the back of the tins so they’ll stick to the strip. Detailed instructions can be found on Instructables.
Alton Brown uses velcro strips, which is just as wonderful as magnetic strips and perfect for renters.
If you own spices already, check out “The shelf life of spices” to make sure your spices haven’t lost their flavor. And, don’t forget to label your spices if you put them in tins so you don’t add marjoram instead of oregano to a dish.
Thank you, G., for submitting your question for our Ask Unclutterer column. Be sure to check out the comments where our readers will add even more answers to your question.
Do you have a question relating to organizing, cleaning, home and office projects, productivity, or any problems you think the Unclutterer team could help you solve? To submit your questions to Ask Unclutterer, go to our contact page and type your question in the content field. Please list the subject of your e-mail as “Ask Unclutterer.” If you feel comfortable sharing images of the spaces that trouble you, let us know about them. The more information we have about your specific issue, the better.