Order with Spices

We cook from scratch nearly every day and have a pretty big spice collection. Living a block away from Penzey’s Spice shop has only fueled our spice collecting habit.

Our cupboard looked like this:

It was hard to remember which spices were in bags vs. jars and reaching in the back created an avalanche as often as not.

So for Christmas, I sent Scott on a fun treasure hunt with clever clues* and it ended with our spice cabinet, which looked like this:

Oh it is so much better! I don’t knock things over and I can tell immediately where each spice is located. Each container is wide enough to accommodate all of our measuring spoons and leaves room for leveling off without dumping powder everywhere.

For the curious:

– Inspiration came from this blog post.

– Spice containers were purchased from here some in the 4 oz size some in the 8 oz size.

– I bought extra tins because I know our collection is likely to grow.

– Our “extra” bulk spices that didn’t fit in the container are stashed in a box in our basement and I actually posted a list on the inside of our cupboard door that tells whether we have more of a certain spice in storage. Overkill? Nah. I was constantly hunting in the cupboard and running downstairs to check for a spice I wasn’t sure we had. On more than one occasion, we bought more of something just because we couldn’t find it!

– The tins in the back are sitting up on little boxes I had lying around (our holiday cards came in them).

– It was a bit spendy to re-do things, on the order of $40 because we have so many spices. Definitely a gift for a fabulous chef of a husband, rather than an offhand expensive.

– He has hardly used it because he started a tough rotation the day after Christmas and I’ve done all the cooking since then!


*The clues actually proved way too clever for Scott’s post-call brain. He hadn’t slept at all the night before and was gamely trying to follow my riddles but finally just asked me for answers. 🙂


About beanland

Scott is a family practice doctor and Anne is a full-time mother and teacher to three beautiful girls and one boy.
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7 Responses to Order with Spices

  1. Kathryn says:

    Genius! that is exactly what I need to do!


  2. denise says:

    I love it!


  3. Laura says:

    This is fantastic & inspiring me to not give myself an excuse to groan each time I open my spice cabinet!! Those tins are super cute too :). I think I will get to work.


  4. Liz says:

    If I weren’t lazy, I’d take a pic of my “long-term to do list”, link it to you and comment that item number 3 is “organize spices”. I’m going to look into the spice containers. Thanks. 🙂


  5. Nathan Wood says:

    Have you been to the Mediterranean Food Imports on High Street (near Houndog’s)? We get a lot of our spices there. We’ve been happy with what we’ve got and the prices are usually 80 cents an ounce.


  6. Pingback: Stocking a Pantry to Save Time, Money, and Your Health – Part 3 | Adventures in Beanland

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