Interior Kitchen & Dining

11 Things You Don’t Need in a Tiny Kitchen

When kitchen space is tight, maximize every square inch by deciding what needs to stay and what can go.

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Make the Most of Your Tiny Kitchen

Kitchens come in all sizes, and some can be very tiny indeed. To make the most of a miniature space, you need to be smart about what stays and what goes. If you’re starved for space in your small kitchen, channel your inner Marie Kondo and get rid of any items that are not essential to your cooking needs (or that don’t bring you joy). You’ll be surprised by how much space you free up!

Kitchen Island

Kitchen islands are functional and stylish, but they take up a lot of space. A tiny kitchen may not be able to accommodate one, and that’s OK. If you have limited space but like the idea of an island, try a cart (like this one from Target) that you can wheel into the kitchen for entertaining and food prep then wheel back out when you’re through.

Wine Fridge

This is a luxury you don’t need in a small kitchen. To store wine in the kitchen without taking up too much space, consider installing a wine rack on a wall or underneath your upper cabinets.

Stand Mixer

If you love baking but don’t have unlimited counter space, you might want to rethink that purchase of a large KitchenAid stand mixer. Instead, opt for a good-quality hand mixer, which will function similarly but take up much less room.

Extra Food Storage Containers

Eliminate clutter by ditching excess food storage containers, especially those that are damaged or missing lids. While you’re at it, throw out those old takeout containers that you thought you’d use for food storage but just sit around collecting dust. Keep only one set of stackable food storage containers to maximize space in your tiny kitchen. 

Related: 9 Simple DIY Ways to Reinvent Your Kitchen Cabinets

Holiday Dishes

When cupboard space is at a premium, you need to be strategic about which dishes get pride of place. This means you should store seasonal items somewhere else. Because holiday dishes are not used year-round, they can be tucked away in a closet or basement until needed—an easy way to open up space in your kitchen cabinets for everyday dishes and other frequently used items.

Large Kitchen Table

Don’t worry about not having enough space for a table that seats all of your friends and family. For a tiny kitchen, it’s better to choose a smaller table that accommodates two to four comfortably. Consider buying a folding or drop-leaf table that can be expanded when it’s time to eat and made smaller when it’s in the way.

Canopy Range Hood

A good rule of thumb: Choose function over style in a small space. While you may have your eyes on a custom range hood, a dramatic fixture like that takes up precious space that could be put to better use in a tiny kitchen. Skip the canopy hood and go for an above-the-range microwave equipped with a vent or filter, which will save space and be more useful.

Double Ovens

When kitchen space is limited, stick to the essentials. Although double ovens are convenient for avid home chefs, they are a luxury, not a necessity. One oven will do the job just fine. But if you desperately want two ovens and you’re making space for a standard-size range anyway, look into models that incorporate a second, smaller, oven. 

Related: Meet the Next Generation of High-Tech Kitchen Appliances

Espresso Machine

You might be tempted to spring for a fancy espresso machine that lets you practice your barista skills at home. These powerful machines, however, tend to take up a lot of space. If making espresso at home is a must, try the less bulky stovetop Moka pot, which has been trusted by espresso lovers for nearly 100 years (available on Amazon).

An Glut of Coffee Mugs

Coffee mugs are a great way to express your personality while enjoying your morning cup of joe. But mugs have a mystifying tendency to multiply, and before you know it one cute coffee mug turns into dozens. When you don’t have the cabinet space to contain your growing collection, stick to the basics and limit yourself to just a couple of fun mugs.

Appliances You Never Use

Most people own a few tools and appliances that they never use. You know what we’re talking about: extras like bagel cutters, ice cream makers, and pizza stones. If you have any unused kitchen tools lying around taking up space, it may be time to part ways by donating them to a thrift store or reselling them.

Related: The Tiniest Appliances You Never Knew Existed

Every Bit Counts

When you have a tiny kitchen, every spot on the counter and in the drawers and cabinets is valuable. Don’t waste this precious space with these items.