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A well-stocked pantry is the key to limiting extra trips to the grocery store just for one can of diced tomatoes or packet of taco seasoning. And when a pantry or cabinet is crowded, it's even more important to have a set of kitchen organizers that maximize space and provide a clear visual of everything from cans to baking essentials.
One pantry organizer that's absolutely necessary for an orderly kitchen is a spice rack. Available in a variety of styles like rotating countertop towers, wall-mounted shelving, and cabinet organizers, spice racks give must-have seasonings (black peppercorns, cumin, and bay leaves, to name a few) a dedicated place in your kitchen. We recommend looking for designs that contain a reasonable number of jars while making them easily distinguishable and accessible— like our top pick, the YouCopia SpiceStack Adjustable Spice Rack.
Whether you're looking to organize your spice drawer or display herbs on your countertop, these are the best spice racks to help you easily find what you need whenever you're in the kitchen.
Pros: This smartly designed spice organizer is loaded with features, from drop-down drawers and non-slip adjustable dividers to removable labels.
Cons: The lightweight plastic makes it feel a bit flimsy.
Our favorite spice organizer does it all and more, holding 24 full-size jars (and twice as many half-size jars) while remaining compact enough to fit inside a cabinet. Available in white or granite finishes, the lightweight plastic organizer is also sleek enough to keep out on your counter, for those who prefer to have their spices within arm's reach.
Three drawers feature adjustable non-slip dividers to keep each spice in its place and allow for different jar sizes. We love that the drawers not only pull out but also drop down—great for bringing the spices to eye level if the organizer is on a shelf over your head. It even comes with 100 removable labels, which make it easier to locate and reach for the right jar when you need it. It's no surprise that it tops several other lists as well, from Food Network to The Spruce. Note that some reviewers feel the construction could be sturdier.
Pros: Simple yet attractive, with grips that keep jars in place. Cons: Tiers could be taller for easier viewing and deeper for larger jars.
Tiered racks are a great way to give cabinets a new sense of organization and make it easier to see labels. This best-selling pantry organizer boasts a simple yet effective design, with three non-skid tiers for securely containing spices. It's available in a variety of colors and 10-inch and 15-inch versions to suit different cupboard sizes. The 10-inch rack holds up to 15 spice jars (though note that the tiers may be slightly too narrow for wider jars), while the 15-inch handles larger mason jars and cans.
Pros: The sturdy iron rack hangs on the wall and holds up to 36 jars. Cons: Requires drilling holes.
Short on cupboards? This wall-mounted spice rack allows you to free up cabinet space, making it ideal for small kitchens and pantries. Made of iron, it offers a more durable look and feel than the plastic options on this list. It's quick and easy to install, whether you hang it on a wall or inside a pantry door. The four tiers hold up to 36 spice jars, great for stocking the tiniest kitchens, and the design makes it fun to display spices and even easier to reach them.
Pros: You can fit this rack inside a narrow cabinet or in the smallest space on the counter—and the lipped tiers will keep everything together. Cons: Doesn't hold many jars.
If you need something for small spaces, or to store your most-used spices at the ready, this mini spice rack is perfect for placing right next to the range. The three-tiered plastic spice rack is only 6.25 inches wide, but it can still hold up to eight spice jars. Granted, that's not many, so you may want to buy a few to place on multiple shelves.
With such a small footprint, it can easily fit inside a narrow cabinet—no more pulling out all the spices to find the one you need. Unlike the first tiered model on this list, the tiers on this rack are lipped for more of a caddy feel, but they're clear plastic so as not to obscure any labels.
Pros: This durable, compact stainless steel rack is attractive yet affordable. Cons: It may be too tall for some cupboards.
A functional countertop spice rack doesn't have to cost a small fortune. This affordable stainless steel option organizes up to 20 spices—both regular and oversized—and keeps them within easy reach as you cook. It's compact, sturdy, and looks more expensive than it is. Rubber feet hold it steady while preventing scratched counters. It's a great alternative for those who prefer metal racks to plastic but don't want to mount one on the wall.
Pros: Not only does this rotating rack come with 20 jars filled with spices, but you can also get five years of free refills. Cons: The lids can be challenging to open to sprinkle or pour.
Why buy an empty spice organizer when you can get a revolving countertop rack that's filled with seasonings? This spice rack comes with 20 spice jars including sea salt, oregano, basil, parsley, coriander, and more. As a bonus, you can even take advantage of free refills for five years if you register within 90 days of purchase.
In addition to the convenience of being pre-filled, the jars are aesthetically pleasing, with labels that make it easy to see what you need. The rack itself is also attractive, with a chrome body that spins easily. Also available in a 16-jar version, this would make a great gift for a beginner cook, a newlywed couple, or a new homeowner.
Pros: Get two tiered organizers for the price of one. Cons: They may be too wide to fit side by side.
What's better than one spice rack? Two spice racks. Made of easy-to-wash plastic, this set features three-tiered organizers with a non-skid surface. They hold at least 15 spice jars each—great for those who have a lot of spices to fit on their shelves. Just as with other tiered offerings, the steps elevate each row so that cooks can know where everything is at a glance. However, note that you may need to place the racks on separate shelves, as they may be too wide to go side by side.
Pros: You can hang these sturdy, spacious racks on the wall or simply set them on the counter. Cons: They can't be stacked on top of each other on the counter.
If you have limited cabinet space, these two spice racks can be hung on a wall or placed on a countertop as a smart space-saving solution. We love that they're separate so you can customize their placement to whatever works best in your home. Just note that you can't stack them unless you go the hanging route. The powder-coated metal mesh shelves fit a variety of spices and condiments including large jars, which many of the others on this list can't accommodate.
Pros: This rack sticks on the fridge, clearing up counter and cupboard space, and the magnet is so strong it will not budge. Cons: The options for placement are limited.
If you have crowded cabinets, this magnetic spice rack set hangs securely on the fridge to free up space. Each rack holds up to five pounds and has a protective railing to keep everything on the shelf—no assembly required. The entire back is a magnet so strong, you might even have trouble removing the shelf or moving it around. That's good news for your spices, which will stay put no matter how hard the fridge doors open or close. Thankfully, the magnet is rubberized, so you can adjust it without fear of scratching your appliance.
Pros: Sleek and sturdy, this sliding rack provides easy access to spices when you need them. Cons: It's not as easy to move around if you change your mind about placement.
Instead of digging through a cabinet to find onion powder, you can use this spice rack that slides out for convenience. It's made with sturdy steel and chrome to hold heavier items, and it only requires two screws for installation. A slide-out rack like this gives any kitchen a custom, luxury feel, and it helps to keep spices visible and accessible. However, this is a less temporary option, should you need to move it after installing.
Pros: Store spices inside a drawer with this tiered rack which expands for the best fit. Cons: The tray may slide around inside the drawer if there's still a gap when expanded.
This tray organizer is ideal for organizing packed spice drawers. The 13.25-inch-wide steel tray insert features multiple tiers and adjusts to the size of your drawer, up to 26.5 inches wide—large enough to fit up to an impressive 64 jars. Just remember to measure your drawer to make sure it will fit the minimum clearances. In addition to this expandable version, it comes in two other sizes: medium (10.25-inch) and large (13.25-inch).
Pros: This durable rack transforms a pantry door into additional storage space Cons: Not a good option for glass bottles.
Add a few extra shelves to your walk-in pantry with this over-the-door organizer rack. The six-tier design is large enough to not only stow spices, but also other pantry essentials like cereal, cans, snacks, or even cleaning supplies. Installation is simple: Slip the hook over the top of your door frame and secure it with adhesive strips or screw it into the wall. However, since doors swing open and shut, this may not be the best option for taller bottles, which can wobble, or glass bottles, which could fall and break.
Pros: The lazy susan design allows cooks to turn and access spices, matter which side of the rack they're on. Cons: It can be a bit wobbly.
Avoid sifting through the back of your cabinets with this easy-to-use turntable that makes each item visible and accessible. Similar to the step-style rack from the same brand, this two-tier design features a non-skid surface to prevent your spices from sliding. There's even a raised edge so nothing falls off in the rotation—a great feature, since the construction can feel slightly wobbly. It's available in multiple colors and is incredibly easy to clean.
The right spice rack depends on your space and needs, but we've found the YouCopia SpiceStack Adjustable Organizer to be an effective solution for most households. Not only does it maximize cupboard or counter space with three drop-down drawers, but it's also designed to make spices visible from every angle.
Since most spice racks have a finite number of containers they can accommodate, choosing one that works well with your style of cooking will be essential. If you stick to a small number of the standard spices, a small countertop rack may be all you need. If you have a large number of spices or often buy new ones, a storage system that allows for flexibility and expansion may be a better choice.
Some racks are freestanding, some are mounted, and some are designed for in-drawer use. Choosing the design that works best for you might have more to do with your kitchen layout and design than the spices themselves. Most important will be whether the design includes the spice containers or accommodates standard spice jars. If you want to be able to purchase new spices from any purveyor, a version that includes containers can be a good choice, as long as you can easily acquire extra containers as your collection expands.
Storing in a dark, cool space is always preferable for long-term storage. While it can be nice to place your spice rack where spices will be easy to access, it will be important to avoid storing near an oven or range top because of the heat, which can affect the lifespan of your spices.
"Your most frequently used spices should be those closest at hand," says Luke White, co-founder of Evermill. "No matter what your organizational method is — alphabetical, cuisine, or most used — having a system in place will save prep time. Additionally, seeing your spices displayed prominently will help make sure you always have enough of the spices you need for every dish. Prioritize what you use most on your top row and make sure it's not expired. Refresh after a year."
"Freshness depends on the spice, the quality, and the source, but regulations are too lax in our eyes. You'll see expiration dates from suppliers, especially brick and mortar, allowing two to four years of shelf life on their back label, which doesn't include time spent in the supply chain. We truly believe that the majority of spices should be consumed in their first year, and then lovingly replaced," says White. "This is why we designed reusable amber glass jars that elongate the potency of your spices. If you really want your dishes to shine, it's time to stop using expired spice dust on your beautiful farmers market produce and proteins. The best rule is to buy in small quantities from reputable sources and replace after a year. Your tastebuds and guests will thank you."
When it comes to storing spices, pro kitchens face more challenges, according to White. But since they also tend to go through volume much quicker than a home kitchen, the optimal storage conditions are less important. "Most bulk spice suppliers of professional kitchens sell big containers with large, easy-to-read labels, allowing them to be quickly recognized from the line," he says.
"Commercial kitchens also love plastic as a function of durability for these intense environments. You're going to need larger quantities of spices to achieve your flavor if they're not freshly ground or have been sitting on a hot shelf for a while. The longer they sit, the more volatile oils dissipate. You don't see too many kitchens opting to spend more on that particular line item in their overhead. There are discerning restaurants that purchase from better sources, like Lior Lev Sercarz of La Boite, who famously supplies kitchens such as Jean-Georges. In these exceptional cases, Lior is selling higher quality spices in smaller batches and smaller containers, with more volatile oils, allowing less to go further and reducing the amount of storage needed. It's a pricey choice for a professional kitchen but makes all the difference," says White.
Lily Gray is an eCommerce writer who has written several articles related to storage and organization. For this piece, she and her editors scoured the market to find solutions that would work for various kitchen sizes and layouts.
This piece was also updated by Stacey Ballis, a freelance writer, recipe developer, and product reviewer. Stacey has been published on Food & Wine, Eating Well, Allrecipes, MyRecipes, Delish, and more.
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