Taming Tupperware: Genius Hacks For Organizing Food Containers

Many people have that one drawer in their kitchen–the messy, overflowing drawer that we dread opening. If this is your tupperware drawer, it’s time to organize. You can’t food prep for the week or save your leftovers if your container tower threatens to collapse.

Luckily, hacks can help you tame your tupperware. Some are simple, such as keeping your containers and lids together. Others, such as repurposing a cereal box, are more creative. Your kitchen will shine, and your stress will decrease after reading these tupperware organization hacks.

Stack Tupperware Like Russian Nesting Dolls

Don’t snap the lids on your containers. Take the lids off, and stack your containers inside of each other. They’ll look like Russian nesting dolls, and this way, you’ll save a lot of room. You can use the same technique with your lids.

Drawer is filled with stacked, organized tupperware.

When you stack your empty containers, you’ll have extra storage space in the top one. You can shove lids inside of your open containers. This technique will also keep similar containers and lids together.

Match Your Lids With Your Containers

If you don’t want to separate your lids from your containers, match them appropriately. Stack your containers, and then shove the lids into the top container. Or, you can place the lids underneath the stack of containers.

Lids are sorted near the appropriate tupperware in a drawer.

Another method involves slipping lids in between towers of tupperware. If you can mentally keep track of which lid goes where this method can work for you. Pick a method that you don’t need to memorize, or else you’ll forget within minutes.

Label Your Bins (No, Not The Tupperware)

If you keep your tupperware inside larger plastic or cardboard containers, you can label these bins. These prevent you from scrambling for the right lid or the ideally-sized tupperware for your pasta.

Labeled bins hold tupperware in a kitchen cupboard.
Pinterest/The Organised You | Family & Home Organisation

Keep all of your lids in certain containers, and label them as “small lids,” “large lids,” or “circular lids.” Separate circular tupperware from huge, rectangular tupperware. Bins not only secure your containers, but they save you from the hassle of scavenging your kitchen for the correct tupperware.

Organize By Brand

Tupperware brands produce lids that are specifically designed for their containers. If you drop every lid into a pile, it’ll take forever to find which one fits your chosen container. To make your life easier, arrange your tupperware by brand.

One large plastic container holds multicolored tupperware lids.

The same goes for size. Try to store same-sized tupperware together by stacking them. Although it may take a while to separate your brands, it’ll help you in the long run. How many times have you grabbed a lid that you thought would fit, but then it didn’t?

Repurpose Your Old Magazine Organizer

If you have deep, roomy cabinets, you can save room with a magazine organizer. These slim containers will divide your space easily. They’ll hold your lids and smaller containers without consuming too much space.

A magazine rack holds tupperware lids in a kitchen cabinet.
Pinterest/Vickie Cook
Pinterest/Vickie Cook

Also, “over the door” or “hanging” magazine racks can hang on the cabinet door. They sell for $10 to $20. If you have a magazine rack that sits on your desk, you can still use it. Use zip ties to attach it to the inside of your cabinet door.

Reuse Old Cereal Boxes

Do you often eat cereal? If so, don’t throw out the box; you can use it to store lids. With an X-Acto knife or scissors, carve a diagonal slit from the box. It should look similar to a magazine rack. You can always paint the box or cover it in decorative paper to hide the evidence.

A reused cereal box holds tupperware lids.
Pinterest/Amanda Shannon

You can pull off this hack with other containers, including granola bar boxes or oatmeal containers. Without spending money, you can re-design your tupperware storage.

Stick Lids In A Cooling Rack

Lids are hard to organize. When you stack them, you’ll cause an avalanche every time you need the small blue lid. To see all of your lids, store them upright. Place them inside of an unused cooling rack.

Person organizes tupperware using a dish cooling rack.
Pinterest/Katia Kruta
Pinterest/Katia Kruta

Cooling racks have slots of metal bars that are meant to drain water. But you can slip tupperware lids in between the bars. By keeping them upright, you can see all your lid options and grab them more quickly.

…Or Use The Plate Rack

If you can’t fit a cooling rack in your cupboards, use a plate rack. These wooden racks hold plastic lids steadily and can squeeze into many cupboards and counters. Better yet, you can buy one for only $8 on Amazon.

A wire plate rack holds up tupperware lids.

Don’t want to buy a plate rack? Consider using bookends to shove your lids together. Although it won’t look as organized, it’s still easier to pick lids that way than digging through the disastrous lid drawer.

Drawers Are Better Than Cupboards

Many people shove their tupperware into cupboard shelves, but it’s far easier to keep them in drawers. If your drawer is deep enough, you can stack tupperware dishes inside of it. You can also store lids inside of empty containers.

Twitter user opens and unloads his tupperware drawer to fix.

If you force tupperware into cupboards, you’ll have a potential avalanche every time you reach for a portable bowl. Drawers prevent this. They also allow you to see every piece of tupperware you own at once.

An Under-Shelf Basket Will Work Wonders

If you aren’t a handyman but want to upgrade your shelves, get an under-shelf wire basket. These baskets have hooks that attach them to the higher shelf. It’s an easy method to unlock extra lid and container storage.

Tupperware lids are in an wire under-shelf basket.
Pinterest/Life on Oak Hill
Pinterest/Life on Oak Hill

Under-shelf baskets prevent giant towers of stacked tupperware. While stacking tupperware saves room, they’ll topple if the stacks are too tall. You can get under-shelf baskets at Home Depot, Amazon, or Bed Bath & Beyond for under $10.

A Genius Way To Use A Pocket Organizer

If you want to save cupboard space, buy a hanging pocket organizer. Wall pockets are made to store items while saving space, and you can get one for less than $10 on Amazon.

Tupperware lids are stored in a wall hanging pocket organizer inside of a cupboard door.
Pinterest/Decorreal.com | Home Decor, Design & DIY
Pinterest/Cally Mitchell

Hang the organizer on the inside of your cupboard, refrigerator, or wall. If the pockets don’t hold larger tupperware, use them for lids. Don’t underestimate how bulky a pile of lids can be. Some wall pockets come in colors and designs that’ll accentuate your kitchen, too.

Divide A Drawer

If your drawers are wide, your tupperware will eventually slide into a messy pile. With some extra poster board, wood, or cardboard, you can section off your drawers. You only need to measure your drawers and cut the slabs accordingly.

Tupperware drawer is divided with a wooden board.
Pinterest/Beth Silver
Pinterest/The Kitchn

If you don’t want to DIY, you can buy “divider blocks” at several stores. These cost anywhere from $7 to over $20, so it’s more cost-worthy to create your own. Plus, you’ll customize the dividers to your tupperware size.

Behold: Corner Cabinet Organizers

If you don’t know about corner cabinet organizers, this knowledge will change your life. They’re mini-shelves that you can place in the corner of your cupboard shelf to save room, and they make the perfect lid storage.

A plastic corner organizer stores tupperware lids on a shelf.
Pinterest/Margot Glasser
Pinterest/Margot Glasser

Some of the more expensive corner organizers swing out of open cabinets. But you can buy smaller, plastic ones for far less. They’ll stack your lids without the risk of them falling out every time you open your cabinet door.

Recycle That Old Cardboard Box

If you store tupperware in tight kitchen cabinets, use a cardboard box to make things easier. The box will allow you to pull out the tupperware, similar to a drawer. It also prevents your containers from toppling over.

Tupperware is organized in a cardboard box inside of a drawer.

Those open produce boxes work perfectly. Otherwise, you can cut a regular box with an X-Acto knife or scissors. Carve a dip into one side of the box so you can easily reach in to pick up a container.

Install Drawers Inside Your Cabinets

Too many cabinets, and not enough drawers? You can install a drawer inside of your cabinets. Removable drawers are available at Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Amazon. If you don’t want wood, you can buy metal wire drawers for around $30.

A wooden shelf full of tupperware comes out of a cabinet.
Pinterest/Jordi Garcia Bori
Pinterest/Jordi Garcia Bori

While this may sound like an investment, it’s worth it. You can transfer these portable drawers from home to home. They’re also way easier to pull out a drawer of tupperware than reach inside of a dark cabinet.

How To Put Tension Rods To Good Use

You might know tension rods as a method to hang window and shower curtains. But tension rods come in many shapes and sizes, and some of them can fit inside of cabinets or drawers. It’s a cheap, flexible way to store your tupperware.

Tension rods organize tupperware lids in a drawer.
Pinterest/Better Homes & Gardens

In deep drawers, you can section off your lids with tensions rods. You can also use the rods as a protective wall, to prevent your containers from falling from off the shelves. They’re cheap and can easily be moved or replaced.

Break Out The Pegboard

If you don’t want to mess with drawers or tension rods, here’s another drawer-dividing technique: pegboards. Lining your drawer with a pegboard allows you to choose where you stick the pegs that keep your tupperware in place.

Tupperware is organized with a pegboard inside of a drawer.
Pinterest/The Kitchn

Pegboards work the best in drawers that you can pull out. You can use them inside of cabinets if you can see inside of the dark space. You can also use pegboards on shelves to stop containers from falling out.

Better Yet–Install A CD Rack

CD storage racks come in many shapes and sizes, including wall mounts, boxes, and towers. Depending on the style, you can use an old CD rack to store your tupperware. They can keep lids or specific containers together.

Tupperware lids are stacked on a mounted CD rack.
Pinterest/Amber Knoll

Since many people don’t use CDs these days, you can get a rack for fairly cheap. Some toy bins can also work if they fit inside of a cupboard or cabinet. Look through your old containers; you’ll likely find something that works.

Plastic Bowls Go In Plastic Drawers

If you’re struggling for kitchen space, you might need to store your tupperware outside of your cabinets and drawers. In this case, use cheap, portable plastic drawers. These three-drawer containers go for less than $20 at Walmart.

Plastic drawers hold tupperware.

You don’t need to access tupperware as often as you need pots, pans, and plates. Don’t feel weird about storing your tupperware elsewhere. Keep the plastic drawers close to your kitchen, and you’ll have much more kitchen space to spare.

Get A Flatware Organizer, But Not For Flatware

If you’re going out to buy a flatware organizer, buy another one. It can separate your tupperware. You might think that flatware organizers don’t offer enough room to contain containers. But if you buy a rubber organizer and cut it, you can control how much room it affords.

Tupperware lids are stored in a flatware organizer.

Most flatware organizers are under $20, and some are under $10. They can keep smaller lids together and prevent tupperware from rolling around. Although you’re not organizing flatware, you’re still organizing kitchen utensils.