Here’s a look at 10 kitchen cabinet storage ideas to make the most of your space, from pull-out shelves to hidden drawers. By thinking ahead about how you’ll use your kitchen, you can design a cabinet layout that fits your needs and keeps everything easily accessible.

When designing your kitchen cabinetry, it’s important to think ahead as to how you might use each cabinet and what cabinet features are available.

So today I’m sharing a look the cabinet storage ideas that I love in my kitchen.

This post isn’t about organizational ideas. If you’re looking for that, check out this post that I previously wrote. Instead, this article is meant to help you plan your cabinet design and layout to include any extra storage features that might help you with your storage needs.

My Kitchen Remodel

My main complaint with my old kitchen was that the layout was bad and it made organizing, cooking, and cleaning more difficult. So when I was planning the layout for my new kitchen, I really spent time thinking about how I’d use the space so that I could be more efficient!

For example, when unloading the dishwasher, I can now put away plate, bowls, glasses, and cutlery without moving an inch! Plus, I no longer have to climb into my corner cabinet to reach things way in the back…that are also in the dark!

white kitchen cabinets with wood island and runner rug

But having an efficient kitchen means planning ahead. And that starts with your cabinet design to ensure you include kitchen cabinet storage ideas into the design itself! So today I’m sharing what I learned during my remodel process and what kitchen cabinet storage ideas I really use and love.

As a side note, some of the ideas mentioned below can be purchased after the fact from companies such as Rev-a-Shelf and others. It can be more cost-effective to purchase after the fact in some cases. But in other instances, you really have to design your kitchen with these features in mind, purchased at the time you’re designing your cabinetry.

So lets’ dive right in!

1. Hidden Trash & PAPER TOWEL HOLDER

This combination pullout trash and paper towel storage cabinets is probably the most practical thing in my kitchen. My old kitchen had a trash compactor, which was constantly dirty and smelly. Now my garbage is neatly tucked away and with two bins, I now have one for garbage and one for recycling.

kitchen cabinet pullout trash and recycling in white kitchen with black range

My cabinet manufacturer offered a full-height, double garbage pullout that had a shelf above for paper towels. I loved the idea but didn’t like the wasted space on the shelf behind the paper towels. I really wanted to use that space for more paper towel storage!

My cabinet designer encouraged me to look on Etsy for a pullout shelf. I replaced my fixed shelf with this pullout one. I now have hidden garbage, recycling, and paper towel storage!

pullout trash and paper towl storage with two cans and three rolls of towels in white kitchen with herringbone floors  - a kitchen must-have!

2. Divided Cutlery Drawer

For someone who hates cooking, I have an abundance of dishes and cutlery because…well…I just like them! In my old kitchen, I had purchased a cutlery organizer which was fine except that it didn’t really hold enough and sometimes the forks stuck up and caught the drawer when closing! Sadly, I have a few bent forks now…

My drawer is wide at 30″. This gave me the option of having a regular two-tier organizer PLUS a side organizer for serving utensils. I literally planned the width of this cabinet just so I could get this particular cutlery organizer that accommodated serving utensils.

built in cutlery divider for kitchen drawer - great kitchen storage idea

This is actually a two-tier cuterly organizer that it built into my drawer. Two-tier cutlery organizers are pretty standard now, with the top tier sliding back to reveal another tier underneath.

two-tier cutlery divider with knife block below - great kitchen idea

If you have an existing drawer and want to add an organizer, check out these options on Amazon that will maximize your space!

3. TOEKICK DRAWER

You might have seen toekick drawers before in other kitchens. Many people use them to store baking sheets or large platters. I could do the same, but I’m using mine to store…drumroll please…a step stool! (This is a short girl’s best friend!)

I’m on the shorter side and having a step stool accessible in the kitchen will be so handy! Even more so because the toe kick drawer is located underneath the appliance cabinet.

hidden toekick drawer for hard to store kitchen items

It’s easiest to design your cabinets with the toekick drawer, but it is possible to add one in an existing kitchen. In fact, the same Etsy vendor whom I bought my paper towel shelf from also sells toekitck drawers!

4. APPLIANCE CABINET & DRAWERS

A traditional appliance garage is designed so that the lower part of the cabinet door lifts up. My ceiling is so short though, that I didn’t want to split my full-length cabinets into two parts.

Instead, I opted for full-length doors using bi-fold hardware and gorgeous unlacquered brass cremone bolts.

white kitchen with brass hardware and cremone bolt cabinet next to large window - warm white kitchen

Closest to the sink is my coffee station. It holds all of my coffee and tea supplies, including the mugs on hanging rails.

hidden coffee station in kitchen using bifold doors - perfect way to store coffee maker

On the opposite side of the kitchen is my appliance cabinet. It holds my microwave, but also my most-used small appliances like my air fryer and ice maker. In the cabinet underneath, I have three rollout drawers that hold other small appliances so that when needed, I can just pop them up onto the counter and plug them in!

hidden appliance cabinet for microwave and small appliances - great idea for where to put the microwave

5. Sheet Pan Dividers

In my old kitchen, I stored all of my baking sheets in a drawer underneath my oven. Everything was stacked on top of each other. That meant that when I needed a baking sheet from the bottom, I had to take everything out of the drawer. And every once in a while, something would get stuck to the point where we couldn’t get the drawer open and we’d have to jiggle and pry until we could!

sheet pan storage above pantry - baking sheet organizer

In designing the new kitchen, we had a cabinet above our small pantry that seemed like the perfect spot for a sheet pan divider. This allows them all to be stored upright so that I can easily slide out the one I need.

baking sheet organize in kitchen cabinet above pantry - easy kitchen organization idea!

Mine was built into this upper cabinet space. But if you have an existing cabinet that you’d like to use in a similar way, you can purchase these online. Rev-A-Shelf makes individual dividers that screw into the cabinet. This type would be the most stable, plus it would allow you to space each exactly how you want. Alternatively, you can also purchase freestanding dividers like this one or this one.

6. Pullout Shelves

Having had mostly cabinets in my old kitchen, I can say with 100% confidence that pullout shelves make all the difference! No more bending down and peering into the dark corners of those lower cabinets. Pullout shelves make everything easily accessible and viewable.

pullout drawer in kitchen with clear and red tupperware organized on peg holder

We have pullout shelves in our pantry as well and I love that I can finally see what I have! I can’t tell you how many times I bought a canned good at the grocery store only to come home and realize I already had it but it was buried in the back of the cabinet.

You can add pullout shelves to an existing cabinet with products like this.

7. Corner Lazy Susan

For my corner cabinets, I had the option to choose from a lazy susan, corner drawers, or a curved corner pullout. I decided against the drawers only because I wanted to balance out the design with the cabinets I had on the other side of the kitchen.

As for the curved corner pullout, the cabinet designer advised against it, which surprised me. But her reasoning was that the hardware itself takes up a lot of space and so it offers up less storage than a traditional lazy susan. So, I went with the lazy Susan. I added the battery-operated motion sensing light so that I can easily see everything!

corner cabinet lazy susan with motion activated light - Here's what to do with a corner cabinet

This two-tier lazy Susan allows me to reach everything in my corner cabinet!

8. In-Drawer outlet

Schrock offered a drawer outlet accessory and I was quick to purchase one! I use the kitchen as my office, so the idea of being able to charge my laptop or my phone while stored away sounded like a great idea to me. The outlet includes two three-prong outlets and two USB ports.

power outlet in drawer to charge electronics

9. Dish Drawer

In thinking about making dishes and cutlery easily accessible from both the table and the dishwasher, a dish drawer seemed to make the most sense to me. Truly, this decision was based on efficiency and space. So, I set aside one deep drawer to use for dishes and extra bowls (extra because my pretty ones are in my glass cabinet).

dish drawer organizer holding white dishes - keep your dishes in a drawer for easy access

To keep everything in place, dish drawers need a peg board system. I could have purchased this from the cabinet company so that it would have come installed, but the cabinet designer advised that it was cheaper to purchase separately.

I purchased this system and popped it right into my drawer. Perfection!

10. Paneled Appliances

Panel ready appliances give a beautiful, seamless look to the kitchen. No more worrying about finger print smudges on stainless steel.

Panel-ready appliances DO cost more than traditional appliances because in addition to buying the appliance, you have to purchase the custom cabinet fronts and appliance pulls.

For panel-ready appliances, you purchase your appliance and then purchase your panel (the front door of your appliance) from your cabinet company. It will be custom-sized to fit your particular appliance.

Full disclosure, I have two paneled appliances in my kitchen, but my built-in refrigerator is stainless steel. We debated for weeks about the expense for a paneled refrigerator versus the benefit of the streamlined look. In the end, we decided that the dishwasher definitely needed a panel so as not to break up the look of my kitchen sink cabinetry. But my refrigerator isn’t as visible so we decided to save some money and go with stainless.

white kitchen cabinets with brass handles and wood tile floors

Here’s a closeup of my paneled dishawher with its appliance pull. It just blends right it to give this run of cabinets a nice, clean look.

white paneled dishwaher with brass appliance pull

If you have a storage solution that you love, share it below to help others as they plan their remodels!

You can see more of my kitchen in my 5 Must-Have Kitchen Features post or in my 9 Kitchen Organization Ideas

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2 Comments

  1. Your kitchen is gorgeous! I love everything about it.
    Robin

    1. Thank you so much! I think next week I’ll do a full reveal because my friend reminded me that I forgot to do one! Whoops! I hope readers aren’t getting tired of kitchen posts…just one more. lol!

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