Even though our kitchen and oven are a lot smaller than what we had before, I still cook just about as much. I may not bake quite as much as my oven is a lot trickier to work with. And we didn’t have a big turkey last Thanksgiving because one wouldn’t fit in our oven, so we had a turkey roast, but that was all we needed for 3 of us anyways.

I typed up some things that have helped me in cooking in cramped quarters. I hope they’re useful to any other tiny kitchen cooks out there.

Making our turkey roast Thanksgiving '10

  • I notice I wash the dishes a lot more frequently, because if I don’t, I just don’t have any space for cooking.
  • I keep all my appliances up on a shelf, rather than on the counter.
  • My kitchen table is often used as counter space.
  • When I’m not cooking on the stove top, it becomes extra counter space too.
  • Since I only have 3 small kitchen drawers I keep some of my cooking utensils in a holder behind the stove.
  • The top of our fridge holds jars of flour, rice, beans, etc… It’s a nice spot that’s out of the way, but I can still get to it easily.
  • I buy in bulk and stock up on sale items only when it’s practical. Since I don’t have all the space in the world, there are somethings that are just too big. I like stocking up on smaller things though, like Tabasco sauce, spices, honey and certain canned goods.

At work in my little kitchen

  • Usually the dish or pot the food was made in is what I use to serve it in.
  •  I don’t have knick-knacks or vases sitting on my table or counter.
  • When we have more than just us 3 eating we have to eat outside or just let everyone sit wherever they find a spot.
  • To make things fit in the freezer better I freeze them flat in ziplocs. Then stand them upright like books. (I got this idea from Miserly Moms).
  • I try to only have appliances and utensils that I really use. Otherwise they just take up space. For example, only 2 of my cookie sheets fit in the oven, so the other ones I put in storage.
  • I don’t cook fancy 5 course meals very often. Usually just a main dish and one or two sides or sometimes it’s just a one pot meal.
  • Keeping things organized helps…which is something I’m forever working on. :)

Basically keeping things as simple as possible is best. But I’ve always liked things simple anyways (I guess cuz I’m simple-minded!). Lol

Any of you out there working in tiny kitchens? What do you find helps?

This post is shared at Tammy’s Recipes for Kitchen Tip Tuesdays.

5 Responses to “Small Space Living – Cooking in a Little Kitchen”

  1. These are great tips. I don’t have a lot of counter space in my kitchen either and what I do have is obstructed with a microwave and a space for my clean dishes to dry. I actually like to use my kitchen table when I slice/dice, especially when I’m doing a lot of it. My kitchen isn’t the prettiest with decorations and big vases with flowers but it’s functional. I save my ‘fru-fru’ decorations for other rooms of my apartment.

  2. Hello! =)
    This reminds me of our kitchen while we lived in Ghana, West Africa. I only had a small amount of counter space on either side of a double (shallow) sink…unless you count the built in drain boards on either side of the sink, which were a bit high for me (I’m 5 ft. tall).
    We had a free standing “apartment” (read: small) stove with oven. The oven I rarely used. Who wants to bake when it’s over 110 degrees outside? Our fridge was small, but that was rarely a problem as we couldn’t count on electricity most of the time anyway. Ah, the joys and adventure of missionary life! =)
    I did acquire a small stainless steel topped table on wheels to use as an “island”. It doubled my counterspace! =) I did have shelves that my (handyman) husband put up for me in the next “closet room” over.
    All in all, I couldn’t complain. We had so much more than others there. I am thankful for my present kitchen which does seem small to me still, but much bigger than my African kitchen.
    Blessings to you as you live in your small space. It keeps the family closer together! =)

    • I really think living in a smaller space makes people more creative! You just have to make do with what you have, don’t you?

  3. We have a similar tiny kitchen in our camping trailer. We went to a kitchen reno place and had two covers for the sinks made out of Corian (solid countertop material). That way, we have extra counter surface and can leave one side uncovered if we need to access a sink. Small dirty dish items can be tucked under the covered side out of sight and out of the way until you are ready to do the dishes. If we need to to an emergency quick clean up when company drops by we can stuff all the dishes under the two covers and the kitchen looks tidy. The covers can also be used as serving trays to take things outside. They weren’t expensive to have made because they were made from the pieces that are normally cut out of a counter top for the sink. They were happy to get anything for what they saw as scrap material.

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