Spice Jar Wars

I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect spice jar. I think I saw a spice jar/pantry organizing project on Pinterest and decided I had to have coordinating jars in a drawer in our new house. We live close to a Sprouts Farmers Market where they sell spices in bulk. You buy what you need in a small baggie and use your own container at home. I really wanted to start doing this so I wanted to find about 12 jars for my most commonly used spices.

First my criteria for the perfect jar:

  1. Accessible when cooking (Fit in a shallow kitchen drawer about 3″ in height)
  2. Abiding, aka Durable
  3. Affordable
  4. Available to buy in case I needed extras or replacements
  5. Aesthetically pleasing

I first started at Crate & Barrel.

DSC_0350I bought the Libbey Vibe spice jars (4.5 oz) there only to later find them on Amazon.com and Target.com for cheaper. If you like the Libbey Vibe style of jar, go to one of those sites not Crate & Barrel.

I liked them because they could fit in the shallow drawer. But I hated the plastic seal; I thought that was so cheap, like they looked like a dollar store product. Remember I bought these at the store and some of the jars on the shelves were completely loose. So I asked to see a new case and tested each lid and replaced a few with good ones I had found off the shelf. If you order online, you might get stuck with a dud. Also, I didn’t like the thin glass–the jar did not seem durable to me, but I didn’t test these over time. I returned them. Later I read reviews on Amazon and a lot of people seem to like them, but I just thought they were not for me.

I went to the Container Store for the first time. I love that store but things can be pricey.DSC_0347

I found the Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni spice jar (5 oz). They are made of durable glass and my All-Clad teaspoon fits in it well. But they were at list price for $1.99 a piece and they did not fit in the drawer standing up.

Then I went on Amazon again and found Global Amici Orto jars (5 oz).DSC_0573

These were extremely pricey but looked gorgeous. And they have an awesome wide opening for measuring spoons. I was reluctant to spend so much money on just a case of 6 jars, but for the quest for the perfect jar, I did it! They came with a few dented lids and then upon replacement, one jar was completely broken. But the aesthetics of the ones that were not broken made me really wish I could have had these. But they were really expensive and in the end, I’m glad I got a refund for the damaged shipments.

I went to Wal-Mart and found the Ball Dry Herb Jars (4 oz); these herb jars come with a spice lid but could still use regular plastic canning lids. I much preferred these to the regular quilted Kerr jars that have regular canning lids (which have two pieces to the lid).


DSC_0352It was after I bought the Ball jars that I realized that because my drawer is so shallow, I wanted my jars to lay on their sides rather than with lids facing up because I wanted to be able to read labels that I would eventually put on the sides of the jars. The Ball spice jars were very affordable and widely available.

So I returned to theĀ Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni Jars and thought, if I could lie them flat, they would fit in the drawer, though they do roll around slightly. So I bought them when they went on sale on Amazon for $17 for 12. All 12 came in perfect condition. They are very durable and pretty little jars. The price does not beat the Ball jars at Wal-Mart, but does beat the Libbey Vine and the Global Amici Orto.

Winner: Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni 5 ounce jar

The only drawback to the Quattro is the availability; I’ve only seen them at Amazon or The Container Store. But I felt that I could overlook that and because it’s a regular item at The Container Store, which is here in the DFW area, if I needed a replacement or to get replacement lids, I felt I could do so with ease.

I went back to the Container Store to find the Quattro 8.5 ounce jar for spices we go through quickly. I bought a few @ $2.49 each.

I saw the bigger 7.5 ounce Global Amici Orto there also for $2.49 and I cringed with regret for a bit because they are still the most beautiful jars I’ve ever seen and their lids are even the same size as the Quattro Stagioni 8.5 ounce jars (medium lid) if I ever needed to replace them. But I just couldn’t buy them. They were in perfect condition at the store but they didn’t carry the smaller size I had bought from Amazon. I think they are a seasonal product for holiday canning.

So I stuck with my Quattro jars. I hope I made the right decision.

Then for labels, I first started with the easy. I picked out the Round EZ labels instead of the blank Quattro Stagioni labels because the Quattro labels seemed kind of long for the small spice jar. But because the Round EZ are clear, they are really hard to read when you put dark spices into the jars. So these went into the trash.

I persuaded myself to spend a little lot extra for a great product that looked classy. I came upon these vinyl custom pantry labels and spice jar labels from SuperSweetLife’s shop on Etsy.

I ordered dark red to match my red kitchen. Reveal to come.