How To Organize Deep Kitchen Drawers [3 Practical Ideas]

Is your kitchen filled with deep drawers that waste all of your space? This is a problem that just about everyone has! Storage builders have devised hundreds of options to utilize those giant drawers efficiently. If you can’t stand the clutter and the waste of space one more minute, re-organize those drawers today. Don't fret, we’ve compiled and elaborated on the different ways to use containers, dividers, and organization methods.

To organize deep kitchen drawers efficiently, try one or a combination of the options below:

  • Use vertical space - plates, silverware, pans, and lids can all stand up.
  • Use dividers - both tall and short - to maximize organization and space.
  • Get creative - maximize every square inch of space.

Sometimes those deep kitchen drawers are like bottomless pits. It’s impossible to be efficient if you have to spend ten minutes searching for something! So, if you’re looking for a way to clear clutter, increase space, and make things easy to reach, then look no further. Continue reading to learn how to stretch that squandered space in your deep kitchen drawers!


white plates neatly stacked on a kitchen organizer. How To Organize Deep Kitchen Drawers [3 Practical Ideas]

How To Organize Deep Kitchen Drawers

Vertical Organization

One of the biggest problems in deep kitchen drawers is trying to access all of the items quickly and easily. So, one of the best ways to utilize the wasted space in deep drawers is to use the space vertically. Plates, pot and pan lids, and cookie sheets are traditionally stacked one on top of another, making it difficult to access anything on the bottom. However, if you turn them sideways, you open up your deep kitchen drawers to easily accessible, effective storage.

Pot and pan lids

Keep those pot lids easily reachable by stacking them upright. A simple wire rack can make use of those huge drawer spaces.

This pot lid organizer has space for the handles on top. It uses vertical drawer space and keeps your pot lids easily accessible. Click here to see this organizer on Amazon.


Yes, even plates can be stacked vertically. There are tons of ways to achieve this if you don’t have built-in racks. You can purchase wire racks or dividers easily online or at variety stores like Kmart, Target, and Walmart in the storage sections. They will hold your plates upright and fill that under-used drawer.

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This custom built-in utilizes those cavernous drawers and make plates easy to access.

A simple wire plate holder is a great way to use large drawer spaces. See this plate rack on Amazon.

Baking Pans

One of the most difficult items to store is baking pans. They come in so many shapes and sizes, and they are tricky to stack on top of one another. Using vertical storage for these items will maximize the space in a big drawer and make your items easily accessible.

If you have a really deep drawer, you can try this kind of pan stacker. See it on Amazon.


Cutlery in the bottom of a deep drawer is a huge waste of real-estate. Consider putting them in cups or jars, or containers built for this purpose. Just be sure to keep the sharp sides of your cutlery down.


Drawer dividers can turn previously wasted space into a gold mine. A simple set of tension dividers can transform virtually any drawer. For a deep drawer, you can use the dividers one on top of the other to create a wall that reaches the correct height for your drawer.

Tension Dividers

Tension dividers fit almost any drawer, and they can be used singly or stacked to make the most of your space.

These classy bamboo dividers look really stunning in a drawer. Use them stacked on top of each other to make a tall wall to divide large items like baking pans, dinner dishes, or even glass baking dishes. Click here to see them on Amazon.

Container Dividers

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Containers can be used to keep items separate. Deep containers hold big items like apples, onions, or potatoes, and not only use space efficiently but also keep items separate and easy to find.

Deep storage containers can be used to delineate the space in a large drawer. Don’t just use the plastic bins in the refrigerator, they can be adapted to a deep drawer just as well. See them on Amazon here.

Creative Organization

If you use your imagination, you can organize your drawers in any way to work for you. Don’t be afraid to put different items in the same drawer to use space efficiently.

This drawer utilizes a vertical plate organizer for dinner and dessert plates. It also leaves space for bowls and serving dishes.

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Take a look at the creative use of space for different items in this deep drawer. The various storage methods make this the ultimate baking drawer.

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How Do You Split A Deep Drawer?

A deep drawer can be split up vertically, as in the examples above, or it can be split using clever inserts that make two drawers out of one. These types of dividers that split a deep drawer can also be custom-made by a cabinet shop to fit your drawer exactly.

Double your drawers

Many options exist for making two drawers out of one. Inserts are pretty common and you can find them online or at hardware stores. If you absolutely don’t have the need for a deep drawer, you can modify it instead. A cabinet store or even a carpenter can make inserts for your current drawer.

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This photo displays an insert for a deep drawer. It has space for big items like a mixer, and a small drawer above to hold the related items like the mixer attachments.

In the above example, the drawer has a custom-fitted split-drawer system to take advantage of the space. What's even better, it takes advantage of the area underneath the drop-in range.

How Do You Maximize A Deep Drawer?

To maximize a deep drawer, you need to look at what kind of storage you need. Do you have a lot of plates? Is your kitchen overrun with wooden spoons, spatulas, and other kitchen utensils? Do you have a tiny kitchen? Whatever you have, make sure that everyday items are in easy reach of your prep and cooking area. Use the ideas in this post to help you maximize your deep drawer space.

How Do You Store Cutlery In A Deep Drawer?

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Consider storing forks, knives, and spoons upright. If you’re planning a new kitchen, you can order a specialty drawer to hold cutlery vertically. If you need to utilize an empty deep drawer, there are hundreds of containers that can be purchased at container storage or commercial kitchen stores. You can even use tall cups, glass jars, or any container that can keep your forks and spoons upright and separated.

How Deep Should Drawer Organizers Be?

Drawer organizers don’t have to be a specific depth. They should be the size that suits your purpose, and they should not impede or block the drawer from opening or closing.

A good rule of thumb for an organizer is that you should be able to open the drawer with one hand and take out what you need with the other. If you have to use both hands to dig out items, you need to rethink your system and re-organize using the methods listed above.

How Many Drawers Should A Kitchen Have?

If you have a basic kitchen - not an efficient kitchen - then six drawers are a good starting point for most kitchens. The breakdown could look something like this:

  • One shallow drawer for cutlery and kitchen utensils.
  • One shallow drawer for aluminum foil, plastic wrap, baking paper, etc.
  • Two large and deep-sized drawers for baking pans and pot lids - stored vertically.
  • Two medium depth drawers for kitchen towels, paper and plastic bag storage, and/or oversized kitchen utensils such as barbecue tongs.

In Closing

There is a myriad of ideas and solutions for deep kitchen drawers. Don’t be afraid to get creative and mix and match items for maximum space use. Dividers, containers, wire racks, and even drawer splitters are available to give you as many options as there are things to be stored! Stand up items vertically to make the most of space, and to make access quick and easy.

If you are designing a kitchen, then take advantage of all of the possible built-in options that can be included to make your deep kitchen drawers fashionable and efficient!

For more great kitchen storage ideas, read the following articles:

Where To Store Cutting Boards In Your Kitchen

How To Organize Glass Food Storage Containers [4 Crucial Tips]

15 Awesome Under-Kitchen-Sink Storage Ideas

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