Alphabetical Spice Drawer

Save time and reduce stress by finding your spices quickly and easily.

Spices in the Top 3 rows are arranged alphabetically, so you can find them in a snap. Miscellaneous mixed spices fill the remaining space at the bottom. Simple wood strips were cut and simply put in place (not nailed or glued) as dividers.

I'm guessing I'm not the only one who has pulled out his or her hair while searching for a spice that you just KNOW is right in front of you . . . somewhere. It's particularly irritating when you're cooking something that has 8 or 10 spices in it. If it takes you 30 seconds to find each one, that's a lot of wasted time and effort.

I finally got so sick of it that I decided there must be a better way. At first, I simply arranged all of my spices alphabetically, but did not use dividers of any sort. That worked for a little while, but pretty soon the different container sizes and lack of order ended up getting things mixed up again, and I was back to where I started.

Our spice drawer is under the cooktop, over the cat, and just across from the island where we do our food prep. Works very well.

My current setup works great, and was pretty easy to do:

  • First find a drawer or two to hold your spices. We were fortunate in that we planned for a large spice drawer under our cooktop when we redid our kitchen. But any drawer that is waist height or so will do.
  • Then divide the drawer into rows by adding divider strips. I just cut a long strip of narrow wood into several pieces. Then just lay them in place in the drawer before adding your spices to the drawer.
  • Put your spices in containers of similar height. Most spices are already in standard size jars, but any that are too tall will screw up your nice neat rows. What I did was to re-use old spice containers, then transfer spices from over-sized containers into these standard size containers, and re-label them. See the Oregano and Parsley in the photo above?
  • You will still need a place for your over-sized spice containers. Can't help that. If you're like me and buy a lot of your spices in bulk, just re-fill your standard size containers in your drawer as needed.