Asked on Nov 06, 2017

Need more storage in my galley kitchen

Tosha Smith
by Tosha Smith
We bought this house almost a year ago & I made a has no pantry & the kitchen is a small, galley type! I'm trying to find something to fit in the space at the end (exterior) wall for additional pantry food storage, but nothing has met my needs & wants that I have found. Currently, I'm using the middle cabinet on the far side on the right side of the kitchen, but it is not enough. I have two problems.....the dishwasher & cabinet doors opposite to it make things difficult. If I could afford to remodel or expand, I would. If I would have designed a kitchen in this space, I would have made it U-shaped & wrapped cabinets & countertops around that back wall, but I'm stuck with how it is. I also do not have any room in my dining room for a hutch or such. Maybe a custom cabinet that can roll? Any other inexpensive ideas?
q need more storage in my galley kitchen
Recent left view of kitchen. The back wall the clock is on is an exterior wall that forms the right side of the house & garage.
q need more storage in my galley kitchen
Pre-move in right view of kitchen. The door you see on the far right leads into our garage. The laundry room & water heater are on the other side of the stove wall.
q need more storage in my galley kitchen
Dining leading into kitchen from the living room. The door you see leads to the back yard.
  24 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Nov 06, 2017
    Why not utilize the wall where the clock is with a beers rack or portable pantry unit

  • Cheryl Markus Reynolds Cheryl Markus Reynolds on Nov 06, 2017
    Can the dishwasher be used as a portable one and placed in the middle of the back wall when not is use? It would create some additional counter space. Then an additional cabinet placed where the dishwasher is.

  • FL FL on Nov 06, 2017
    I'd suggest the rolling cabinet with a butcher block top for more prep space, storage inside plus room to hang a towel bar and/or hooks for more storage.

    • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 09, 2017
      I think that is going to be our best option, just having a hard time finding one I like for a good price. I'm tempted to have a cabinet company see if they can custom make one to match our cabinets with either a butcher block or stainless steel top.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Nov 06, 2017
    Clock Wall - Add Wall fixed Fold Down Table as work area. Fit Shelves (Could be narrow Glass fronted Cabinets.) above to take Stuff.............

    • See 1 previous
    • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 09, 2017
      Johnavallance82, I did consider installing a folding shelf to utilize as additional prep space & then could be folded down when not in use. Right now I need more food storage than prep space.

  • Lynn Lynn on Nov 06, 2017
    Tosha, I love the idea of a slim pantry between Studs. If you don’t care for the pantry being on display, I would take drywall off the wall in 2 places, have cabinet doors made to either match paint or match the existing cabinet.

    I noticed the pet bowls along that wall, you could even incorporate an automatic food & water dispenser within the cabinet. No need to move them 😊

    • See 1 previous
    • Lynn Lynn on Nov 09, 2017
      Living in an area that saw only a hanful of days below 100 degrees this summer I understand!!
      I have done some serious brainstorming here (better than doing my evening chores 😊)
      Why not add a buffet on wheels? Not too wide, so it’s main parking spot could be in front of the tall cabinet and still access the dishwasher. another option is to build a can & boxed good pantry in the garage. A good place to start for cabinets or islands or any other building needs is your local ReStore by Habitat for Humanity. Gently used cabinetry, construction materials & a whole lot more at a substantial savings!

  • Linda Sikut Linda Sikut on Nov 06, 2017
    It looks like you also have some wall space at the other end of the room. That narrow pantry between the studs could also be put there as a second one, or you could put up some shelves to fit the space and use them for dishes. Then put stored food in the cabinet where the dishes were.

  • Jeanine Galvan Jeanine Galvan on Nov 06, 2017
    use baskets on the top of the cabinets...clear out the clutter. :) peace

  • Ken Ken on Nov 07, 2017
    Acknowledge that you cannot afford to do a massive remodel.

    I've seen smaller galley kitchens, but they always have a "U" shaped countertop if the kitchen has a blind end as does yours. IF you were redoing the kitchen cabinets you could take advantage of that now blank end wall. As small as it is, the bill for cabinets would be *relatively* low. Also, since the garage/laundry/utility is in close proximity I would be looking there for space for pantry cupboards. You also have space above the cabinets. A soffit cabinet could be built in place or pre-made cabinets installed to store cookware that doesn't get used every week.

    Although you could use a rolling island as has been suggested, it is my experience that if you have to keep shifting it around to work in the kitchen it is a potential safety hazard and you will tire quickly of continually moving it.

  • Single Girl's DIY Single Girl's DIY on Nov 07, 2017
    Hi, Tosha! My kitchen is a little more open than yours, but it has about the same amount of storage space. I end up storing things in other rooms. For example, large dishes that don't get used often, extra napkins and paper towels, and other non-perishable items go on shelves in the garage, or in a cabinet in the laundry room. Maybe doing something similar would help open up some space for you for items you need to keep handy in the kitchen.

  • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 07, 2017
    I love the idea of adding storage decor to above the cabinets. I currently have holiday serving dishes up there that are hidden from the moulding around the top of the cabinets. I had custom pullout drawers made for the base cabinet to the left of the stove for my pots & pans. I also had them made for the cabinet we use for food pantry items, but have not installed them yet. It will be a little more challenging since we'll have to remove the shelf first. Our other cabinet did not have a shelf.

  • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 07, 2017
    I do not like the idea of an open rack. I feel it will make the kitchen look not as tidy. I have been searching & searching for a freestanding pantry unit that will fit in that space. It's hard when I will need to still be able to open the dishwasher & the cabinets opposite of that. Sure I have found things that I love, but they are very expensive custom pieces. It will most likely need wheels for sure! Thank you!

  • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 07, 2017
    I would gut the whole kitchen if I could! LOL! Having only 4 small work spaces is very difficult. Thanks for your thoughts.

  • Tosha Smith Tosha Smith on Nov 07, 2017
    Thank you. We do have stuff stored in other rooms as well. Paper towels are in the bottom of our linen closet & I have a cheap pantry cabinet in our garage for appliances & things that don't get used often. Unfortunately, our garage is a single car garage with the laundry room & water heater at the "nose". If we can get the garage straightened up (we don't park in it), maybe I can have/find more space for another cheap cabinet or shelf. My parents have a big metal cabinet in their mudroom that is right off the dining/kitchen, but I'm afraid I'll forget I have food out there if I do something similar in the garage. LOL! I think the garage might be the best place to expand our storage though. Thank you!

  • Remove the cabinet doors on that end of the kitchen and have them as open display area and then you would have more access when you put your rolling island type cart on that back wall. You can then just roll it to one side a bit to access the stuff in the existing cabinets. You could install shelves on the wall above the rolling island, you an also use baskets on those shelves if you want to maximize storage as well as baskets above the existing cabinets.

  • FL FL on Nov 09, 2017
    Good luck!

  • Inetia Inetia on Nov 09, 2017
    If you cut out the portion of the wall where the clock is would it go into the garage? If so would it be in your budget build a closet that encroaches into the garage instead of the kitchen. You can make a walk-in pantry in what ever proportions the layout of the garage allows..

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Nov 10, 2017
    The only thing I can think of to solve this problem would be to have a complete new kitchen designed Or Use the cupboards you have for food storage and find new homes for every thing else or thin them out Or Shop more often for food (let the foodstore worry about storage) so you don't have to. There is no other answer except eating less........

  • Ellis Ellis on Nov 10, 2017
    I have a similar problem, and I had to make a "food pantry" in the basement, where all the waiting-to-be used food is stored.

    I would try to find some space in the garage, and get some shelving units to store kitchen stuff on them. Anything that you haven't opened yet can be stored there, cereal boxes, canned goods, jars, juice in bottles, etc., could go there, along with paper towels, etc. You're right about forgetting, sometimes I buy something we've already got stored, so rotating the stock is important.

    If you want closed storage, there are cabinet units made for garages, too. I just searched "cabinet units for garages" at Amazon, and there were several brands there, so I'm betting you can find some to suit your needs someplace.

  • 62q10370829 62q10370829 on Nov 10, 2017
    I used book shelves in garage at 2 different houses for 10 yrs. for can goods. Now I don't have a garage. Got cabinets in dining room I put box stuff, cans in corner cabinets that are lazy Susan in kitchen. One house had only 2 overhead cabinets & we put up shelves & put dishes on 1 shelf & spices, box food & open food in container's we had 3 shelves on each side. The house I'm in now has no cabinets for pots. The whole kitchen is set up wrong & hardly any under counter storge. House was built 1850-1890.

  • Melissa V Melissa V on Nov 11, 2017
    Have you thought about moving the dishwasher to the other side of the sink?

    Then you could build out counters/cupboards along the back wall-uppers and lowers! Even use the tall cupboard at the end and turn it horizontally and make Tesla upper cabinets. Reuse what you’ve got with lazy Susan’s to utilize the corners. If you wanted to, you could have the uppers one finish and the lowers another for a great update! And you still have all of the overhead display/storage to work with! Tons of storage!!!😁

  • Paula Paula on Nov 11, 2017
    1. Move dishwasher to other side of the sink.
    2. Where dishwasher was, make open shelving.
    3. Build 2 movable work station/storage cabinets that match your cabinets. Keep them at the end of your kitchen blocking new open storage. When you need access to open shelving, roll the unit that blocks it. Same on other side. I can't really see what is going on with your cabinets (opposite dishwasher) but you may want to change cabinet doors/access.
    4. Extend cabinets up to ceiling. Give it punch by using large crown molding. You'll be surprised how useful those small cabinets are for infrequently used platters....
    5. Consider changing a few of the cabinet doors by removing the raised panels and inserting opaque glass. It will make the kitchen feel airier. Especially important once you extend cabinets.
    Alternative. If you are not up to the suggestions regarding the workstation. Consider building recessed cabinets in the space in the wall. Not sure what this is called. We did this in our small bathroom. Amazing how many toiletries you can store in the empty space between the sheet rock.
    Good luck.

  • Robin Fournier Robin Fournier on May 06, 2018
    FIRST: Get rid of what you haven't used in one year....second, buy used pretty wicker/weaved/wooden baskets (approximately 12inches in diameter so not too heavy to take down when needed) and put items you don't use daily in these baskets above your cabinet open space. Still need more space? My go to: Dollar store clear plastic Sterlite shoe boxes to organize cabinets, you can also use slotted plate holders and turn them vertically/horizontal whichever works best and store frying pans and lids. With a small kitchen you probably should have a Costco Sam's club card due to you have no place to put extra dry goods!

  • Phaedra Phaedra on Apr 06, 2019

    Crazy thought. Whats outside on the other side of the outside wall. Could you add a door in the middle of the wall and add a two foot insulated exterior bump out. Same principle as a bay window. or a Juliette balcony.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Feb 04, 2021

    Hello there,

    Yes, you can buy Kitchen Work Trolley, that will serve as Prep, Wine Storage, Veg etc. It could tuck underneath a Shelf at bottom level of top cabinets, which would give you extra storage.

    IT IS POSSIBLE YOU/THEY CAN MAKE OR YOU CAN BUY a cabinet that suits you and just add trolley wheels to it!