The kitchen is the heart of the home whether you’re cooking, eating, or entertaining. Unlock the full potential of your kitchen with these simple tips used by FLATS residents with kitchens big and small.

Kitchen Island

The key to living in any small space is investing in pieces that serve more than one purpose. Adding a multifunctional island will give you extra workspace, storage, and potentially a place to eat as well. A lot of kitchen carts have extra storage and handy hooks to hold pots and pans which will really transform your space.

If you can’t invest a brand new kitchen cart there are plenty of ways to DIY your own. Be on the lookout for a waist-level dresser at your local thrift store and give it a second life as your island. You can even have a home improvement store cut a piece of butcher block to fit on top.

Sink Cutting board 

A cutting board that fits over your sink is a fantastic way to create an additional prep station in your limited kitchen. Slicing and dicing does not often involve the use of a sink so it’s a prime location to multitask. Any cutting board that’s wider than your sink will work but they do make special cutting boards with handles and built in strainers.

Burner Covers

Same idea as the cutting board over the sink. Before you turn on the heat you can throw a cover over the stove to get everything you need prepped and ready to be cooked.

Utilize Wall Space

While your apartment may not be blessed with the storage and counter space you desire, there is probably ample wall space to add some extra surface area to store your things.

Floating shelves are reasonably inexpensive and easy to install. They’ll display the things that would usually live on counter space from jars of utensils to toasters.

Many people also neglect the space where the backsplash usually goes. Often times tiny kitchens don’t have a proper backsplash, this leaves the perfect little space to hang up frequently used utensils. You can also use this space to hang a hand towel bar, no more running around the kitchen with wet hands!

c2 Working with Limited Counter Space

Making the Most of Nooks    

Some of the most neglected real estate in the kitchen is the corners. Many of us overlook the odd gap between an appliance and the wall or the forgotten corner part of the counter. There are many clever tiered shelving solutions designed to fit these unconventional spaces and make use of great vertical space. A corner shelf is a handy way to store spices, sauces, and all other things you’d usually stow in a drawer or pantry. Utility carts come in all different depths and heights, making them a useful asset in a tight space because they’re easy to roll out and move around. Counter tops don’t meet at the corner? Affix a shelf to fill in the gap to double your “counter” space.

Don’t Forget About Space Above Cabinets

You’d be surprised how many people neglect the space above their upper cabinets. While it can be a pain to not have reachable access to all your kitchen essentials, this spot is a great place for the thing you don’t need on the daily. This is also a great way to add some style to a small space depending on what kind of storage you opt for. Baskets and boxes are go-to options for concealing items and they come in any material under the sun.

Use Cabinet Doors

When you’re pressed for space you have to come up with creative solutions. Have you thought about using the inside of your cabinet or pantry door? Just as you’d use a shoe organizer on your closet door, you can hang a lot of extra items an over-the-door organizer. People have also come up with other clever solutions like hanging rods on the inside of doors for aluminum foil or seran wrap. Command hooks and shelves are an easy and cheap way to store items inside a door.

Maximize Your Cabinets 

When most people put things in cabinets they simply place things without realizing all the vertical space that shouldn’t be wasted in small kitchens. Invest in tired shelves, lazy susans, and shelf risers so you can double the amount of space used while keeping everything easily accessible. Lazy susans are a great way to keep everything reachable when there’s a lot packed into a cabinet, especially a corner cabinet.

Appliance Audit 

Do you need to have your coffee maker, french press, toaster, magic bullet, waffle iron, and mixmaster on display at all times? If you can make shelving for your favorite appliances that’s ideal to conserve precious counter space for prep work. This small space philosophy isn’t only applicable to furniture: if it’s not multiuse and it could be, don’t buy it.