Super Easy (and Cheap!) Magnetic Spice Rack




 Do you hate your spice rack?  Does it take up counter space and get inexcusably dusty?  Does it contain spices that you will never use? (Seriously, WTF is "savory" anyway?)

Then go over to your window, throw it open, lean out and yell, "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this any more!"

Then follow this Instructable and you'll have your very own under-the-cabinet magnetic spice rack that doesn't require a second mortgage.

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Step 1: Materials

 You might be asking, "But can't you just go out and get those magnetic spice thingies at the local bed and bath super box store?"

Sure you can, but it's lame.  And you can't mount them under the cabinet because the lids aren't held tightly enough and they will fall off.  Also, it's more expensive. (Even with an abnormally-sized 20% off coupon.)

This spice rack was made mostly from things we already had lying around.

You will need:
1 power drill
1 drill bit
4 screws
Gorilla Glue
Scrap wood
junked-up cookie sheet (test the cookie sheet to make sure that it's magnetic before you commit to it)
spice jars with lids
rare earth magnets
screwdriver (not pictured)
lovely assistant (not pictured)

The jars were the only things we had to buy specifically for this project, and they were only $.99 each.  Beat that, needlessly-alliterative chain store.

Step 2: Wash the Jars.

I don't have a picture for this, but you should get the idea.  This stuff is going in your food, so make sure the jars are clean, m'kay? 

Step 3: Attach the Magnets

 We decided to put two of our Curiously Strong Magnets on each lid.  Since the lids are, themselves, magnetic, we had to engage in some super-glue acrobatics to make sure it got done without attaching anyone's hand to his or her (my) forehead.

First, lay down a lid and lay two magnets on top of it.  Then put just a drop of glue on each magnet.  Take a second lid and press it down on top of thefirst lid. (It should stick together naturally, since everything in the jumble is magnetic.)  Set the two lids aside for the glue to set.  This takes about 30 seconds.

Step 4: Fill the Jars

Once the lids are ready, you can go ahead and fill the jars. (Which is really what you've been waiting to do this whole time.)  You can also label them in the fashion of your choosing.  We chose to write on the lids.

Here are some of our more aesthetically pleasing spices. 

Step 5: Drill Holes in Cookie Sheet

The title is pretty self-explanatory.  You want to put a hole in each corner of your cookie sheet so that you can screw it into the underside of the cabinets later on.  I used a 5/32 drill bit, but size isn't important. (Ha.) 

Step 6: Secure Cookie Sheet to Underside of Cabinet

 With the screws, as with the drill bit, size doesn't matter.  Just make sure the screws are not so long that they'll poke through the wood and into the cabinet above.  Also, make sure that the head of the screw is large enough that it won't just pass through the hole you drilled. (There's a dirty joke in there somewhere...)

Step 7: Stick 'em Up!

 Attach your fancy new spice jars to your fancy new metal-plated cabinet.

Step 8: Freecycle Your Old Spice Rack

Give that crap to someone else and go enjoy your awesome new spice rack.

Or just go order some takeout and put your feet up.  You've earned it.

Step 9: Special Thanks

I have to give special thanks to my Lovely Assistant for her help in putting this project together and for inspiring it in the first place.  She is my muse.

And amusing. 



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    32 Discussions


    Question 12 months ago on Step 3

    i love the idea, but i'm cornfused about the double top/magnet set that just to get pressure on the magnets during the gluing process? am i missing something else?

    2 answers

    Answer 11 months ago

    As I recall, it was mostly a trick for gluing the magnets in the right spots. If you put them on a lid, you can position them and then put the glue on the other side and when you stick the other lid on, they'll still be in the right spot since the second lid is the same shape as the first. Without the double lid arrangement, the magnets shot out of hand and onto the lid as soon as it got close, which led to unpredictable results.


    Reply 11 months ago

    thanks edsobo, i'm definitely going to give this a try.


    1 year ago

    That was so terrifically comical to read.

    Thanks so much for that :)

    I got to thinking after I read know the Velcro strips you can buy from 3M ? (or Scotch, whoever it is) - available at Dollarama's in Canada, btw.

    To avoid any screwing going on (lol) , those suckers can hold up to 60 pounds. Why not fasten the female side to the lid and the male side to the under cabinet ? No cookie tray needed !

    Any time you want to use a particular spice, simply unscrew the jar from the lid, use what you need and put 'er back ! Yeah ? No ??

    I'm going to try that and come back to let you know :)


    Reply 2 years ago

    Great idea, but I found that the magnetic adhesive sheet wasn't strong enough to hold the weight of a glass spice jar. Instead, I stuck magnetic adhesive sheets directly to my wall and stuck spice tins to that! You just have to make sure to use something like a jar or can to roll along the magnetic sheets to make sure they adhere evenly, and wait 24 hours before trying to stick anything to them, or else they can come away from the wall and all your spices can end up on the floor (don't ask how I know this, lol!).


    2 years ago

    I love your determination to make a magnetic spice rack without spending a fortune on it! Someone who had access to baby food jars could make it totally free! I might spend $4 on a can of spray paint to fancy up the old baking sheet, though. I'm actually writing a blog post about spice storage in RVs...would you mind if I included one of your photos and a link back to this post?


    3 years ago on Step 8

    Awesome!! GREAT JOB!! GOOD THINKING!!I am going to try this I live in a tiny house!! I need some more ideas. My Kitchen has no counter space at all!! Love the jokes in between.. :)


    4 years ago on Introduction

    I am planning to do this! Now, if the lids are magnet-compatible, wouldn't you be able to just pop a magnetic strip up on the cookie sheet and stick the jars to the strip WITHOUT using any glue?

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Actually, that's a great idea! I had a problem with some of the magnets coming off after a while, but a magnet strip would solve that nicely. (Added bonus - you could also use it to store knives.)


    6 years ago on Introduction

    reading some of the questions, I think they can be named on the bottom instead of the top I am sure..maybe with stickers.. I will try this in my kitchen!! excited!!


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I saw a different instructable for this and just finished, and I used an old cookie sheet, perfect upcycle. I loved your instructable, wish I would have found it first.


    8 years ago on Step 4

    How do you read what jars you want if they're labeled on the lids? (just wondering)

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Step 4

    You can't, really. Most of our jars are pretty easy to tell apart from the outside, so with the couple that we can't it's not really a big deal to just pull them down and check the top.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Savory (Satureja) is a genus of aromatic plants of the family Lamiaceae, related to rosemary and thyme. There are about 30 species called savories, of which Summer savory and Winter savory are the most important in cultivation.



    9 years ago on Introduction

    I am so glad you posted this structible...I would love to know where to find empty spice jars with metal lids, though...I've looked just about everywhere (I simply will not order online and pay for shipping...) and I can't put my hands on any reasonably priced ones...thoughts?

    3 replies

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

     The ones we used here came from World Market and only cost us $.99 each, which I considered to be pretty reasonable.  You might also want to look in at a restaurant supply store.  They would almost certainly have suitable jars, but I can't say for sure how much they would cost.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you so much! I have been able to find some, now I just have to find the motivation to put it together. ;-)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    If you know someone with a baby, ask for the empty baby-food jars (or post a 'wanted' on freecycle or craigslist). Soak the lables off, and you have nice sized spice jars free of additional charge!