As an avid home cook I have A LOT of spices. And as a Manhattanite, I don’t have a lot of counter or cabinet space to spare or fill with innumerable spice containers. When I moved into my most recent apartment, I immediately began looking into spice rack solution and was disappointed with my options because:
- Many racks didn’t have enough containers to accommodate my collection, so I’d have to buy multiple racks (and where would I put those?)
- I didn’t care about having identical jars as much as saving space
- They required mounting, and I am 1. not handy and 2. have concrete walls so see #1 again
- Some spice sets came with pre-defined labels that do not fit my global spice collection
- The cost of having to buy one or more racks that didn’t fit my needs
- They seemed inconvenient to access while cooking because I’d need to store it far from the stove or in a place that required a step stool
Nope, I was looking for something affordable, customizable, and countertop friendly. Cue the solution: test-tube spice “rack”. I’m not going to claim I designed this myself, I definitely found it on the internet but I can’t remember the site. A big shoutout to the inventor for being a lifesaver! This solution checks all the boxes:
- Affordable – you can get a set of 10 for $7.25 on Amazon here, but there are a variety of options depending on the size of your collection
- Customizable – I got a set with cork stoppers and I wrote the spice names in Sharpie, so I could label according to my collection. I can also buy more tubes at any time.
- Countertop Friendly: They are 1/2″ wide each so you can fit many right on your countertop even in a small apartment
As an added bonus, I found it easier to measure teaspoons/tablespoons with the test tubes. They are also pretty durable, but I have learned the hard way if you drop them at the exact wrong angle they can shatter so they are not unbreakable.
I store the spices themselves in an out-of-the-way, hard-to-reach shelf and refill as needed using a small funnel. You’ll also need to store the test tubes in a box with enough width and height to stand them up. I used an empty Tupperware. You can be as creative or simple as you want!
DIY Test Tube Spice Rack
- 1 or more sets of glass test tubes with cork stoppers (such as these)
- Sharpie or fine-point marker
- Small funnel (less than 1/2″ mouth)
- Box or container to store them
- Use the funnel to pour the spices into each tube. Go slowly to avoid overfilling.
- Label each tube with the spice name by writing it in Sharpie on the cork stopper.
- Store in a box or container where the tubes can stand up and you can easily read the names.
- Refill tubes as needed.