Whether you’re moving into your first off-campus apartment or returning to student dorms this year, being smart about space is a common skill students need to hone in their college years. Student accommodation is not known for being spacious or filled with storage facilities – particularly in the kitchen. However, if you’re a cooking aficionado, want to save money in college, or simply can’t bear to have dining hall meals for the school year, there is a way to overcome the challenge of smaller cooking spaces and still have your kitchen essentials – being smart about your kitchen storage. By getting creative and investing in space-saving essentials, your student kitchen can be an oasis of culinary adventures (or late-night snacking), without the clutter and mess.
Invest In Go-To Multipurpose Cookware
Versatility is key in small kitchens. Investing in a few high-quality pans that you can use for multiple recipes and cooking styles will see you through your college years, and if you’re lucky, even into your first apartment. The trick to choosing multipurpose cookware is to look at the reviews and the versatility. Does it come with a cover and enough depth to make a casserole as well as soup? Some pans now come with a removable handle, which is handy for stacking them and saving shelf space.
Utilize Your Cabinet Doors As Well As Cabinets
An over-the-door organizer is cheap and great for using up that often-forgotten space behind your cabinet doors. From holding your makeshift spice rack at college to storing your cutting board or cleaning essentials, kitchen cabinet organizers are ideal for small spaces, and help you see what you have at all times – essential for those living on a college budget. You can also get one for as little as $14 (The Simple Houseware Kitchenwrap Organizer Rack) as seen in New York Magazine’s list of Best Kitchen Cabinet Organizers On Amazon.
Another useful hack: small cabinet organizers can also be handy for keeping your fridge tidy and fresh. Use smaller baskets or cabinet organizers to organize your condiments, juices and vegetables into different sections. You can also get creative with it and organize your fridge according to meal ideas (breakfast/lunches/dinners) or according to food groups (meat/fruit/vegetables).
Magnetic Kitchen Wall Storage
Another great idea for organizing your kitchen in student accommodation is to use your kitchen shelves for double duty. One way to do this is to use a shelf for handing your pans or cups as well as storing pantry items. With the help of magnetic wall storage hooks and shelves, you can easily create a double-duty kitchen shelf without the hassle of DIY. This is a great idea to add extra storage if you have open shelving in your kitchen, and banish clutter.
Recycle And Rethink Your Old Jars
With a bit of warm water and dishwasher soap, most jar labels easily peel off, leaving you with well-designed, clear glass canisters. Fill them up with your pantry staples like rice, pasta and cereals. You can even make your own spice jars with smaller versions. Best of all, they cost little to nothing to do. You can even ask your family or friends to save you their jars if you want. When organized on a shelf, it helps you to easily see what you have, and still looks stylish.
Living in student accommodation can mean you’re short on space, but you can approach the problem creatively. With a few clever space-saving hacks and inventive gadgets, you can make your student kitchen an organized and well-stocked oasis of culinary adventures.