Add Height to Kitchen Cabinets: A Guide to Expanding Storage Space


When it comes to kitchen cabinets, space is often a precious commodity. Whether you have a small kitchen or simply need more storage, finding ways to add height to your cabinets can be a game-changer. By utilizing vertical space effectively, you can maximize storage capacity while maintaining an organized and visually appealing kitchen. In this article, we will explore various methods and creative ideas to add height to your kitchen cabinets, transforming your cooking space into a functional and stylish haven.

The Importance of Maximizing Cabinet Space

Before delving into the methods of adding height to your kitchen cabinets, let’s understand why it is crucial to maximize cabinet space. A cluttered and disorganized kitchen not only looks unappealing, but it also hampers your cooking experience. Insufficient storage space often leads to frustration, as it becomes challenging to find and access necessary items quickly.

Moreover, limited storage capacity may force you to compromise on the variety of cookware, utensils, and ingredients you can keep on hand. This can negatively impact your culinary creativity and limit your ability to experiment with new recipes. By expanding the height of your kitchen cabinets, you can alleviate these issues, creating a more efficient and enjoyable cooking environment.

1. Utilize Vertical Dividers

Vertical dividers are an excellent tool for adding height to your kitchen cabinets. These dividers, typically made of metal or wood, can be easily installed within the cabinets to create additional storage compartments. By dividing the cabinet space vertically, you can stack items such as cutting boards, baking sheets, and trays, utilizing the full height of the cabinet.

The advantage of vertical dividers is that they allow you to easily access items without having to remove everything stacked on top. This not only saves time but also prevents unnecessary cluttering and potential damage to fragile items. Vertical dividers are particularly useful in deep cabinets or those with adjustable shelves, as they provide a neat and organized solution for maximizing space.

2. Install Tension Rods

Tension rods are versatile and inexpensive tools that can be used to add height and organization to your kitchen cabinets. These adjustable rods, typically made of metal, can be easily installed horizontally within the cabinet, creating additional storage tiers. By placing tension rods at different heights, you can create multiple layers to store items such as plates, pans, and lids.

Tension rods are particularly effective in cabinets with a large horizontal space but limited vertical height. They allow you to stack items vertically, optimizing the available space. Additionally, tension rods can be easily removed or readjusted if your storage needs change. This flexibility makes them an ideal solution for kitchens with limited cabinet space or for those who frequently rearrange their storage.

3. Utilize Stackable Storage Solutions

Stackable storage solutions are a practical and efficient way to add height and organization to your kitchen cabinets. These solutions often come in the form of stackable bins, shelves, or racks that can be easily stacked on top of each other. By using stackable storage, you can effectively utilize the vertical space in your cabinets.

Stackable bins are particularly useful for storing smaller items such as spices, condiments, or snacks. By stacking them, you can create multiple layers of storage without sacrificing accessibility. Stackable shelves or racks, on the other hand, are ideal for organizing plates, bowls, and cups. They allow you to stack these items neatly, creating a visually appealing and functional storage solution.

4. Opt for Over-the-Door Organizers

Over-the-door organizers are ingenious solutions for adding height and organization to your kitchen cabinets. These organizers, typically made of metal or fabric, can be easily hung over the cabinet door, creating additional storage space. By utilizing the often underutilized vertical space behind the cabinet doors, you can store a variety of items without compromising on accessibility.

Over-the-door organizers come in various designs and sizes, allowing you to choose the one that best suits your storage needs. You can opt for organizers with pockets for storing smaller items such as spices, utensils, or cleaning supplies. Alternatively, you can choose organizers with hooks to hang larger items such as pots, pans, or oven mitts. With over-the-door organizers, you can transform the back of your cabinet doors into valuable storage real estate.

5. Consider Custom Cabinetry

If you have the budget and are looking for a more permanent solution, custom cabinetry is an excellent option to add height to your kitchen cabinets. Custom cabinets are designed to fit your specific kitchen layout and storage needs, allowing you to maximize every inch of available space.

When opting for custom cabinetry, consider incorporating features such as extended upper cabinets or additional shelves. Extended upper cabinets provide extra height, enabling you to store seldom-used items or bulky appliances that would otherwise clutter your countertops. Additional shelves, on the other hand, offer increased storage capacity and organization options.

Custom cabinetry also allows you to choose from a wide range of materials, finishes, and hardware options, enabling you to create a kitchen that reflects your personal style. While it is a more significant investment compared to other methods, custom cabinetry offers long-term benefits in terms of functionality, aesthetics, and overall kitchen value.

6. Remove Cabinet Soffits

If you have kitchen cabinets with soffits, removing them can be a game-changer in terms of adding height and storage space. Soffits are often installed to bridge the gap between the upper cabinets and the ceiling, but they significantly limit the vertical storage capacity.

Removing cabinet soffits can be a complex task, as it involves careful planning and potentially working with a professional contractor. However, the result is worth the effort, as it allows you to install taller cabinets or utilize the space for open shelves. This not only adds height to your cabinets but also creates a visually appealing focal point in your kitchen.

7. Make Use of Corner Cabinets

Corner cabinets are notorious for being underutilized and often turning into a black hole for kitchen items. However, with some clever organization and the right accessories, corner cabinets can become valuable storage spaces, effectively adding height to your kitchen cabinets.

One popular solution for corner cabinets is a Lazy Susan. This rotating shelf unit allows you to access items stored in the corner easily. By utilizing the full height of the Lazy Susan, you can stack items vertically, effectively doubling the storage capacity of the cabinet. Additionally, pull-out shelves or drawers can be installed in corner cabinets, ensuring that no space is wasted.

8. Create Open Shelving

Adding open shelves to your kitchen is both a practical and stylish way to add height and storage space. Open shelves provide a visually appealing display for frequently used items while also offering additional storage options.

When installing open shelves, consider utilizing the vertical space between the upper cabinets and the ceiling. By extending the shelves all the way up, you can add height to your kitchen cabinets, creating a seamless and cohesive look. Open shelves can be used to store items such as plates, glasses, bowls, or even decorative pieces, allowing you to showcase your personal style.

9. Optimize Under-Cabinet Space

Expanding the height of your kitchen cabinets doesn’t necessarily mean focusing only on the upper cabinets. Utilizing the under-cabinet space can also significantly increase your storage capacity and help create a more organized kitchen.

For instance, you can install hooks or magnetic strips underneath the cabinets to hang frequently used utensils or knives. This not only saves drawer space but also makes these items easily accessible while cooking. Additionally, consider adding adhesive hooks or racks on the inside of cabinet doors to hang pot lids or measuring cups, further optimizing the under-cabinet space.

10. Incorporate Glass Front Cabinets

Glass front cabinets not only add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your kitchen but also create the illusion of height. By incorporating glass front cabinets in your kitchen design, you can visually extend the height of your cabinets and make the space feel more open and airy.

Glass front cabinets can be used to display items such as glassware, china, or decorative pieces, adding a personalized touch to your kitchen decor. Additionally, by choosing cabinets with glass inserts strategically placed at different heights, you can create a sense of verticality, effectively adding height to your kitchen cabinets.

FAQs About Adding Height to Kitchen Cabinets

1. Can I add height to my existing kitchen cabinets?

Yes, there are several methods to add height to your existing kitchen cabinets. You can utilize vertical dividers, install tension rods, or incorporate stackable storage solutions to maximize the available space.

2. How much does it cost to add height to kitchen cabinets?

The cost of adding height to kitchen cabinets varies depending on the method chosen. Utilizing vertical dividers or tension rods is relatively inexpensive, while custom cabinetry can be a more significant investment.

3. Can I remove the soffits from my kitchen cabinets myself?

Removing cabinet soffits can be a complex task that requires careful planning and potentially working with a professional contractor. It is essential to ensure that the removal is done correctly to avoid any structural or aesthetic issues.

4. How do I organize corner cabinets effectively?

To organize corner cabinets effectively, consider using accessories such as Lazy Susans, pull-out shelves, or drawers. These accessories allow you to access items stored in the corner easily and make full use of the vertical space. By organizing items in a systematic manner, you can maximize the storage capacity and prevent items from getting lost or forgotten in the depths of the cabinet.

5. Are there any alternatives to adding height to kitchen cabinets?

If adding height to your kitchen cabinets is not feasible or within your budget, there are alternative solutions to maximize storage space. Consider decluttering and reorganizing your existing cabinets to make the most of the available space. Use organizers, drawer dividers, and shelf risers to create additional compartments and stack items efficiently. Utilize the under-cabinet space by installing hooks, racks, or magnetic strips to hang utensils or store frequently used items.

6. How can I make my kitchen cabinets look visually appealing?

In addition to adding height and maximizing storage space, it’s essential to make your kitchen cabinets visually appealing. Choose a cohesive color scheme that complements your kitchen decor. Consider adding decorative elements such as molding, trim, or glass inserts to add visual interest and create a custom look. Keep the cabinets clean and organized, and use stylish storage containers or baskets to enhance the overall aesthetic.

7. Can I add height to kitchen cabinets in a rental property?

If you are renting a property and want to add height to the kitchen cabinets, it’s important to check with your landlord or property manager before making any modifications. In many cases, temporary solutions such as tension rods, stackable storage, or over-the-door organizers can be used without causing permanent damage. Always seek permission and ensure that any modifications can be easily reversed when you move out.

8. How often should I declutter and reorganize my kitchen cabinets?

It’s a good practice to declutter and reorganize your kitchen cabinets periodically, at least once or twice a year. This allows you to assess your storage needs, discard any unused or expired items, and rearrange items for better accessibility. Regular maintenance and organization help prevent clutter from accumulating and ensure that your kitchen cabinets remain functional and efficient.

9. Can adding height to kitchen cabinets increase the value of my home?

While adding height to kitchen cabinets may not directly increase the value of your home, it can significantly enhance the overall appeal and functionality of your kitchen. A well-designed and organized kitchen with ample storage space is often a desirable feature for potential buyers. It can contribute to a positive impression and potentially increase the perceived value of your home.

10. What other storage solutions can I incorporate in my kitchen?

In addition to adding height to your kitchen cabinets, there are other storage solutions you can incorporate to maximize space. Consider installing a kitchen island with built-in storage or a pot rack to hang pots and pans. Use wall-mounted shelves or a pegboard to store frequently used utensils or display decorative items. Utilize the space above the refrigerator or the gap between cabinets and the ceiling for additional storage. The key is to assess your kitchen layout and storage needs and explore creative solutions that work best for you.


Expanding the height of your kitchen cabinets is a practical and efficient way to maximize storage space and create a more organized and visually appealing kitchen. By utilizing methods such as vertical dividers, tension rods, stackable storage solutions, and over-the-door organizers, you can effectively utilize vertical space and make the most of your cabinets. Custom cabinetry, removing cabinet soffits, and incorporating glass front cabinets are more permanent solutions that offer long-term benefits in terms of functionality and aesthetics. Remember to periodically declutter and reorganize your cabinets to maintain an efficient and clutter-free kitchen. With these ideas and solutions, you can transform your kitchen into a functional and stylish space that inspires culinary creativity.


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