Do You Have Spices Older Than Your First Born? – Week # 8


Are you laughing or cringing at the thought of the age of the spices in your cabinet?

Before we get into the post, isn’t this Ikea hack, in the photo above, pretty cool?  A small rod on the inside of a cabinet door with small portions of spices ready to use.  This could even be on the wall in a pantry, or the back of a pantry door.

Week # 8

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So here we are fast approaching the end of our 10 week series about getting organized by fall.  Each Motivational Monday, we have talked about areas in our homes that we use daily and that can quickly get out of control.  Spice cabinets are one of these areas.

How Long Are Spices Good?

Depending on the type, spices can be good anywhere from 1-4 years.  The exception is if you are that cute guy in the movie who has been keeping his Indian mother’s spices sacred as he learns to cook in France.  Did you see this movie…it’s a foodies delight.  The fact is very few spices will hurt us if consumed past these dates.  However, most spices will lose their flavor much sooner than a year.  Yet there is a simple way to always have fresh spices and stay organized.  But first let’s have some fun.

What Kind Of Spice Organizer Are You?

Full disclosure-we have permission to use and talk about these photos from real life clients of laurelbledsoedesign.  To the left, a photo of a client who might have every one of these containers from The Container Store.  To the right, a client that may have too many spices.  These are his “leftovers”!

To be fair, this is my combination spice and jar/can pantry cabinet.  To the left the before and the right after I shamed myself into getting it back in order before this post.  Odd how things in the cabinet shift downward behind those doors!

Spices Are Enticing

The whole idea of curating a spice cabinet is a bit romantic wouldn’t you say?  Alone, spices allure us in with their colors and aromas.  With one whiff, we envision all the wonderful food we can conjure up.  Mr. LBD and I have been known to work in a stop at a local spice shop as part of a date night or errand day.  I swear there is a connection between buying spices and stopping for a glass of wine.  Who wouldn’t want to do this more often?  Buying smaller amounts of spices, more often, is how to always have fresh spices.  Buying only what we need allows us to stay organized.  All we have to do is start TODAY. (photo courtesy of Jodie’s Touch of Style blog…just love this spicy outfit!)

Storing Smaller Portions Of Spices

As you might be able to tell from the photo of our cabinet, we use all types of containers for our spices.  Sometimes the bottle/jar the spice comes in is fine.  However, mixing spice blends requires other containers.  Pesto from World Market comes in the jar below and is a great size for larger batches, the take out small container on the left is great for smaller mixes.  It’s a nice mix of recycling and using a disposal item for the spices that are so potent.


2oz Condiment Cups with Lids 

(also known as jello shot cups…)

Pesto Jar


Spice Organizers Dream

Because we plan and set-up so many kitchens for clients, we are always looking for better ways to do things.  Using a drawer for spices, with an organized set like the one below, is a great way to see and reach our favorite spices all the time.  Buying loose spices online, like from Spice Jungle below, or locally at a spice shop or grocery,  works beautifully with a system like this.



Spice Organizer Set


Spice Jungle

Fresh spices, in just the right portion, and in reusable storage containers.  Throw in a date night to be organized and romantic!

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9 thoughts on “Do You Have Spices Older Than Your First Born? – Week # 8”

  1. The post title is priceless, Laurel!!! Why is it that I keep finding spices, way past their sell-by date, even though they have a relatively long shelf-life?!! It’s the same with things like yeast! A welcome reminder to re-visit some dark corners of the kitchen! Lxx

    1. You know what they say….the truth will set you free. The title of todays post hit very close to home! We’ve moved many times and tins of spices from years back always got packed and onto the next destination. Crazy what we hang onto!

  2. Well, I gave it away the other day…I’m a lazy susan organizer with my spices. And of course the spices are in there alphabetically!!
    I love that rod inside the cabinet door—I use that space too, but only with hooks and shoe organizers!!

    1. Good for you! Yes, I also am going to have to incorporate that rod idea somewhere. Talking with a friend, we’ve also agreed to share spices that come in larger qty’s.

  3. LOL, No I don’t! That cracked me up, though, cause I know some people who do…
    I have one of those slide out doors in my cabinet by the stove, like a slidy spice rack. It’s convenient, but honestly, things I don’t use as often, I don’t keep there, as the heat isn’t good for long-term storage. My favorite spice containers are from World Market — the magnetic stainless steel canisters.

    1. It is scary funny isn’t it! Agree that heat is not good for spices. When we design kitchens, we place spice cabinet away from the cooking surface. I know the very containers you are speaking of from WM!

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