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For many people, the quintessential RV experience is intertwined with the challenges of small and compact spaces, especially when it comes to RV kitchens. It’s not an expansive area where you and your partner can whip up a gourmet meal together. Instead, it usually turns into a tiny dance floor, where you switch turns in cooking and dishwashing.
The situation may vary depending on your RV layout – whether you have a galley slide giving extra maneuvering room or a dinette slide that offers some precious floor space. No matter the setup, maximizing every inch of your kitchen space is crucial.
Seeing Beyond The Usual – Unlocking Unused Spaces
The key to optimizing your RV kitchen lies in viewing it from a fresh perspective. Move beyond the confines of your kitchen cabinets. Is there an unutilized space lying hidden or a corner that’s been ignored? Are you using the hall closet for clothes storage simply because it’s conventionally meant for that?
Look at your dining table. Is it a magnet for oddments like stray change, tools, or miscellaneous items that usually end up in a kitchen drawer?
With a fresh view, your hall closet might just turn into a nifty storage for pots, pans, and appliances. Meanwhile, your dining table could be transformed into a storage seat by the window or even a makeshift workspace.
Who knows? That forgotten space under the sofa could be the perfect spot for your paper plates, bowls, and cups, enhanced with a matching drawer that complements your existing decor.
The New Order – Appliance Cabinet Conversion
Upon identifying your needs, you can begin to reconstruct your space accordingly. The traditional RV kitchen cabinets are narrow and not very deep, perfect for short-term RV living. However, for full-time RVers, there’s a need for better space utilization.
For instance, the hall closet can be transformed into a shelved space for your pots, pans, and appliances like crock pots, electric fry pans, and blenders. Just install the white vinyl-coated wire closet shelving at the right heights, and presto! You have yourself a functional appliance cabinet.
Hidden Treasure – The Under Sofa Storage Drawer
Many RV layouts include a jack-knife sofa that converts into a bed for guests. The space under this sofa is often underutilized. In our case, we had an L-Shaped sofa, and while the space under the folding bed was used for storage, the ‘L’ portion was neglected.
To tap into this potential, we purchased a drawer front from a building supply store, and extendable drawer slides from a local auction. With some crafting, we now have a storage drawer that houses all our paper kitchen products and extra spices.
Dining Table or Window Seat Storage?
Whether your RV comes with a dining booth or a dining table, I’m sure it acts as a magnet for all sorts of items. If you’re like us and find yourselves eating in your living space while watching the news, it’s time for a change.
Considering the cost of nearly everything is skyrocketing, including food, we replaced our dining table and heavy chairs with an appealing window storage seat. We used close-out kitchen cabinets from a building supply store and installed them under our front palladium windows.
Now, we have efficient storage for our survival food and a cozy spot to read and enjoy the sunrise.
Expanding Counter Space – A Simple Solution
The classic complaint about RV kitchens? Not enough counter space. Here’s a practical solution that increases counter space without compromising your kitchen’s functionality.
Consider the walkway end of your counter, leading to the bedroom or the living room. Buy a large chopping block or cutting board from a store like Walmart. The one we recommend is the Acacia wood variant, endorsed by Paula Dean. Attach the board to the end of your countertop using a piano hinge and a locking arm from a hardware store.
This board folds down when not in use and snaps up to add an extra 18″ X 22″ of counter or cutting space. A solution like this provides you with much-needed counter space and a handy kitchen tool.
To conclude, the key to maximizing your RV kitchen space lies in strategic planning and creative utilization of every nook and corner. With these tips, you can transform your kitchen from a cramped space into an efficient and enjoyable area for cooking.