If only we had our go-to ingredients on hand at any given moment in an RV, life would be perfect. But there’s no getting around the fact that items don’t pop in and out of our life out of convenience. So we RVer’s need to learn how to take advantage of the small kitchen space we have and make it work for the things we truly need. Thats why Phil and I decided to start keeping track of the best RV kitchen storage ideas and hacks.
I would say on the whole, typically the RV kitchen has the least amount of storage space for simple miscellaneous items like coffee mugs. Can you believe that?! Oh, it used to be so easy to collect coffee mugs when we lived in a normal house…
Thankfully, I’ve learned how to be content with just a couple coffee mugs and a collapsible kettle for french press coffee! 😋
Nonetheless, the RV community is filled with ingenuity and proof that limited quarters can inspire true innovation and style for anyones unique needs.
Below are some of the most useful RV storage solutions and organizing hacks I’ve come across for making the most of the limited space in a camper, travel trailer, or motorhome’s kitchen. They also take in consideration those long drive days you planned into your trip, when you want to quickly jump into your kitchen, make a meal, and hop back on the road.
For reference, Phil and I are full-time RVers that just got started and spent way too much time trying to hack the RV storage conundrum, so we hope you enjoy the lessons we’ve learned and now share below!
The 5 Best RV Kitchen Storage Hacks
1. Find All Empty Space That Could Be Additional Storage
A thorough inventory is necessary before investing in any of the many RV storage and organization ideas below.
If you have a kitchen island, do you know what the precise length of it is? Can you tell me the dimensions of your various drawers? What is the depth of your cupboards?
You should have all of these questions answered so you know exactly what you are working with and what you need.
You are also going to find out that the “bulkier” things you need or want to bring, like a blender, might not be a practical item in an RV. Because when it comes to the big stuff, there just aren’t as many options as you would when dealing with the little stuff. So check out your RV in full and really figure out what can you do with all that room?
Perhaps you never cook a meal in your RV and simply use the table for guests. You can use the area under the furniture, including the seats and the table, to store some of the bigger items. What makes this ideal is these bulky items are then hidden away and out of sight which makes the space feel way less crowded to be in.
2. Take Inventory of Your Wall Space
To continue the theme of taking inventory of your RV’s available space, have you paid attention to how much wall space you have too? The RV community has truly shown that no area can go under utilized in an RV and that includes the wall themselves.
You can easily make more space for your belongings with some smart shopping and simple assembly. The added bonus of wall storage is their ease of access too!
3. Identify other Vertical Places in the RV that can be Dual Use
Yes, we are going there too! No place is left untouched when it comes to hacking the RV storage game.
A great way to add more storage solutions to your rig is to identify all cabinets and doors that will have extra room to hold kitchen gadgets and accessories for you.
We’ve seen some really great ideas for cabinet doors holding spices, ziplock bags, oven mitts and so much more.
4. Countertops Can Double as Storage Space
Another great solution we are definitely going to be using in our airstream is decor storage right on the counter top. Yep, some items can turn into dual use for both RV aesthetic and storage right on your countertops!
One fellow RVer said she uses a nail polish rack in their kitchen as a spice rack instead. They used transparent command hooks to keep the nail polish rack sturdy on the kitchen counter, but it looks great. Here is a link to the nail polish rack pictured above if you want to check it out.
You can also use cute containers and vases for holding silverware and straws.
5. Store Items On Your Ceiling!
If you don’t want to overload your counter space too much and you are still have trouble fitting everything into your cabinets, consider hanging items from the ceiling. Of course, keeping it out of the walkway.
This may take a carpenters eye and some additional planning, but the results will completely transform your RV kitchen!
We have seen some incredible hacks of pots and pans hanging from the ceiling as well as from the cabinets above the sink. You could even hang your spatulas, paper towels, and cloth towels.
Now that you’ve looked at your travel trailer or motorhome and figured out what you are working with, lets check out some of the best ideas to get you started organizing your RV kitchen!
10 Simple and Awesome RV Kitchen Storage Ideas To Try
1. Wall-Mounted Magnetic Knife Strips
We decided to start this list of ideas with storage for knives because it can additional help make your RV a safer place to be. Knives are safer and more easily accessible when kept out of drawers and off the counter. Thats why most RVers mount their knife to the wall using a magnetic knife strip.
We do understand not all people are comfortable with their knives out in the open, so another option to this would be a wall-mounted caddy.
To mount it to the wall you can use screws or double-sided tape. But we would recommend screws if possible.
And as you can see from the wall mounted magnetic knife holder our fellow RVer used in the image above, you can really make the knife holder come to life by trying different styles.
2. Paper Towel Holder Under Kitchen Cabinet
If any one else is a KYD fanatic, then you already know about this awesome paper towel holder they keep in their rig. They’ve talked about it in a few of their videos, so of course I had to add it to this list!
It’s so easy to push your paper towel into the holder and pull out without having to twist anything off. The great thing about having this kind of paper towel holder hanging right above the kitchen is its easy access for any spills and quick clean ups that need to happen in the RV. It also doesn’t fall when the RV hits any bumps on the road.
Here is a link to this specific paper tower holder. We truly love it!
3. Hang Organizers From The Cabinet Doors
One of my favorite ways to add storage space to the RV kitchen is by suspending organizers from the cabinet doors. Just remember to get your measurements taken before you go shopping! When I’ve gone to buy a storage caddy to put on the door of a cabinet, I’ve done so on more than one occasion only to discover that the caddy was too large and blocked the door from shutting.
I really like hanging baskets like the one above because you can hang them almost any where. This will be good if you ever feel like redecorating in the future.
RV owners have been known to hang them over the walls of the shower, as well as from the trim that runs along the top of a slide-out. I attached a piece of detachable acrylic mounting tape to the backs of the hooks on mine to provide additional padding to protect the wood and to prevent the basket from sliding about while it was being transported. This was done so that the basket would not move while we drive between RV parks.
4. Magnetic Wall-Mounted Spice Rack
Now we were truly blown away when we saw this one because it is so cool!
If you like to play chef in the kitchen and have so many spices that you couldn’t imagine leaving behind then this idea is for you. All you need to do is grab a magnetic wall board like this one and magnetic jars like these then find the perfect wall to hang it on.
You can change the capacity of yours to carry fewer or more spices depending on your requirements which is nice to have that flexibility of storage when in an RV. It is highly recommended that you buy a big enough board to leave some space for additional items. It’s impossible to predict when you’ll stumble onto an incredible new spice rub!
5. Shelf Racks In The Cabinets
Adding additional shelving on top of your existing one is one of the less obvious RV kitchen storage solutions. If you’re limited in horizontal space, consider going up instead.
The shelf pictured above is ideal for use in an RV pantry or RV kitchen cabinet, because it can create storage space that utilizes the entire cabinet as opposed to just the bottom. And instead of stacking items on top of each other, they will be separated by a shelf that makes it easier to grab items without taking everything down.
It’s important to take precise measurements before installing anything, but a unit like the one depicted can be a great way to make the most of available space inside a cabinet. Keep in mind the shelf unit should be fastened within the cabinet to prevent it from moving around while on the road.
While the image pictured will take an experts craftsman to build, you can also get simple shelves like these.
6. Use Collapsible Kitchen Items
Have you seen the bowls, cups, drying racks that collapse when not in use to make for easy storing? Well if not, let me tell you they are so helpful when RVing! We really wanted a good collapsible bucket to help save water in our RV than we actually reviewed the best collapsible buckets and camping sinks here.
The great thing about this collapsible salad spinner pictured above is you can use the bowl for many other things and not just salads! And bowl typically take up the most space in the worst ways, so this was a real winner to find. You can find it on amazon here: Collapsible Salad Spinner.
We also know there are plenty of coffee lovers on the road with us and if you haven’t heard of the collapsible camping kettles yet it times to get on the bandwagon! Not only can you heat up your water for the french press (like we do) but you can use it for many other purposes when on the road. Whats nice is it doesn’t take up your entire counter space like a traditional coffee maker. It folds right up to be stored almost anywhere.
7. Utilize Compact Campfire Cooking Kits
You will be amazed by the versatility of some of the cooking kits companies have made to meet the needs of backpackers and campers throughout the world. They are durable even over open flames, they clean really easily, they’re non-stock, and they all nest into each other to make for really compact and easy storing.
While most people use a campfire cooking kit because their backpacking and have limited options, they can definitely be used to increase space in an RV kitchen too.
Phil and I spent a lot of time finding the best one for our RV and you can find our review of best campfire cooking kits here.
8. Store Items in Bins (Fabric Bins Work Great in Airstreams!)
Sometime you have multiple items you always use together when in the kitchen of your RV so why not keep them all in the same bin or container to make each day just a little bit easier.
In the Airstream, there is a curve in all of the cabinets above the kitchen because of the way the airstream is built so we have found that the cloth or malleable bins work the best. We use the woven cotton rope ones and they have worked out great! They are also collapsible which you now know is a beautiful word to RVers.
You can find them on amazon here: Cotton Rope Storage Basket
9. Cover The Oven With A Cutting Board
You can already see it, can’t you? Walking into your clean and organized RV kitchen and seeing this beautiful cutting board covering the grease stained oven you used this morning. It’s beautiful and you just love seeing the sign happy camper written on the cutting board, because you are one.
Honestly, we LOVE this cutting board. You can get one custom made on Etsy too!
10. Use A Decorative Utensil Caddy
When your utensils are set up in a decorative caddy, then you can just grab and go no matter the occasion. Having friend over for a picnic outside in the national park? Guess who can just grab a caddy that already has forks, knives, napkins, and salt and pepper for everyone now…
Not only does it serve a nice functional purpose but it can now appear as decor in your RV and on your dinner table. Another good benefit is it keeps your silverware from taking up an unnecessary amount of space in your drawers.
If you have a small RV kitchen and are seeking for storage solutions, hopefully these help you get to the RV kitchen of your dreams.
But whether your RV kitchen is large or little, there are always methods to maximize the space so that you can store and use everything you need.
We know there are many more hacks to transform the kitchen space so we will be updating this list as we find other jaw dropping ideas!