we’ve all been there, searching through our cabinet or pantry for a particular spice for our recipe, we can’t find it so we head off to the store to buy another, only to find the original spice jar we misplaced at a later time.
today i’ll share a few tips to organize your herbs and spices, so you won’t buy duplicates, and finding your favorite spice will be a breeze. i’ve even included a simple DIY project to create your very own spice rack to fit your cabinet.
where to find your spices.
- grow and dry your own spices.
- local farmers market, i’ve found wonderful spice blends at our local farmers market, “burger bomb” is one of my favorites, it’s amazing for beef and turkey burgers.
- specialty herb and spice stores, Penzeys Spices is my favorite, as you can see by my photos. search your local area for spice stores. it’s a great option, your spices will be fresh and you can sample before you buy.
- local whole food or health food store.
- if you’re in a bind and your local spice store is closed, you can find spices at your local grocery store. i don’t suggest making a habit out of grocery store spices, they are often old, have no flavor and cost more than purchasing fresher options, i.e. farmers market, specialty stores.
purchase spice jars that are uniform in size.
since i purchase most of my spices at Penzeys Spices, all my jars are already uniform in size, and for those times when i purchase spices at the local farmers market, or in bulk i have extra empty Penzeys jars on hand.
having uniformed spice jars make it easy to organize, easy to locate a particular spice and it looks great.
if you google spice jars you will find endless resources to purchase any shape or size to fit your spice cabinet, drawer or pantry.
diy spice rack.
it’s not the prettiest spice rack around, but its quick, easy, affordable and sturdy. the best thing is, you make it to fit your cabinet.
i used 1- 1″x8″ for the base and 1- 2″x3″ for the spice shelves. you’ll need some liquid nails and a saw.
measure you cabinet to determine just how wide and long you’d like your spice rack. i suggest making it as big as possible, leaving room for additional spices that you may purchase in the future.
cut your base and test the fit, cut your spice shelves the same length as your base, and glue together.
here’s a view of my primitive, but effective spice rack.
once dry, paint or stain your spice rack as desired. simple, right?
organize your spices.
now its time to organize your spices.
- place your most used spices up front and your least used spices in the back.
- organize your spices by use, for example, place your mexican thyme, taco seasonings, and cumin next to each other, it makes it easy to add them to your favorite mexican recipe without searching through all your spices.
- place your salts together, sea salt, kosher salt, garlic salt, etc.
- place your peppers together, black pepper, seasoned pepper, lemon pepper, etc.
tips. i inserted two cup hooks in my spice cabinet to hang my measuring spoons, this way you won’t have to search through the drawer for your measuring spoons. i also keep my mini glass prep bowls in there too.
i store additional spices in my Tupperware spice organizer. i used to sell Tupperware years ago and this spice organizer was available way back then. Tupperware’s current spice organizer is not my favorite, i owned it, i sold it, the lids never seamed to close properly, thus my spices didn’t remain fresh, so i can’t recommend Tupperware’s current option. the best option is to purchase glass spice jars.