My kitchen spice drawer was a complete mess before I made this simple spice drawer insert.
I could never find what I needed. The spice jars would roll around in there every time I opened the drawer. And, something I discovered after the fact, is that I had some pretty old spices in there. And a lot of repeat ones. All opened. Ugh.
I needed a spice organizer.
These drawer spice organizers are like little tiered racks that fit inside your drawers. I was considering buying one, but we have so much scrap wood in the garage it felt like a sin to let that go to waste. I had more than enough, even if it wasn’t perfect wood.
Related: Ideas for organizing a Pantry
If you are in the same boat, I highly recommend you try making one of these. The cost of making them is so much cheaper than buying one. But I get that sometimes we don’t have any interest in making something – we just want it now. Totally get that.
In order to make this project, you’ll need some wood. But not that much. I ended up using ¼ inch plywood and a 1×2 because that’s what I had in my scrap pile. You can get a 2×2 project panel of ¼ inch plywood for the entire project. They are less than 8 bucks usually.
Before you start this project, you’ll want to measure the length and width of your drawer.
Things You’ll Need
- ¼ plywood project panel – 2×2 ft is all you’ll need (see notes on wood cuts)
- Tape measure
- Wood Glue
- Miter Saw or circular saw
- Sandpaper or Orbital Sander
- Brad Nailer and Nails
Notes on Wood Cuts: The length of every wood piece is going to be equal to the length of your drawer. The width is determined by the height of your spice jars. I have a lot of different spice brands (I buy what’s on sale!), so I just went with my largest jar – which is 4 ½ inches. So, if you want to use a standard measurement for the width of the rack – use 4 ¾ inches. For the width of the riser, I went with 2 inches.
How to Make a Spice Drawer Insert – Step by Step
You’ll always want to start fresh, so clean out the drawer and toss any expired spices.
- Measure the inside width and length of your drawer. Measure the height of your spice jars.
- Cut wood according to these measurements. You will need to cut 3-4 equal rack pieces and 3-4 equal riser pieces. For the rack: the length will be equal to your drawer, and the width slightly larger than the height of your spice jars. For the riser: The length will be equal to your drawer, and you can use 1.5 -2 inches for the width.
- Attach a wood spice riser to each wood rack using a bit of wood glue (see picture for where to attach). Allow it to dry for 24 hrs.
- Using a brad nailer, put a few nails through the wood rack into the riser so it’s secure.
- Insert them into your drawer and get organizing!
You’re done! You can paint them if you want but I actually like the look of the wood.
Spice Inserts for Wide Drawers
You may have noticed that I have really wide drawers. (see picture below).
I only wanted my spice insert to take up half the drawer, using the other half for cooking utensils.
You could attach a piece of wood to the side of your insert, making it all one piece. Or, you can just get a drawer insert and use that to divide the drawer up and keep the spice insert in place. Although – I find that my spice insert stays put when opening and closing the drawer. Just something to think about if you have really wide drawers like me.
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I really wish I would have done this sooner, like before I purchased duplicates of the same spices and opened them all. Lesson learned! Happy organizing!