What is a more gentle cabinet and where can I get one?

by | Feb 9, 2021 | Kitchen | 0 comments

You have probably seen this unique piece of kitchen furniture at your grandmother’s house or maybe even searched for one. It is charming, helpful and vintage. But where did it come from and how is it different from other kitchen storage units?

Today we review everything you need to know about the Hoosier cabinet. After all, most people do not even know where the name Hoosier came from or why we call this type of cabinet a Hoosier cabinet.

What is a more gentle cabinet?

Hoosier cabinetLook in the gallery
Via Sarah Greenman

A Hoosier cabinet is a cabinet with lower storage, upper storage and a countertop. It is an all-in-one piece of furniture used in the kitchen. You can find them with glass doors, flat doors or no doors at all.

Why were gentle cabinets so popular?

green and white kitchen hoosier vintageLook in the gallery
Via Kitchen Concepts Inc.

Hoosier cabinets were first introduced in the early 1900s. Although similar cabinets were invented and used before then, the term was not popularized until the Hoosier Manufacturing Company produced millions of them in the first few decades of the 1900s.

However, it is not known if the name comes from the company or from the fact that they were manufactured in the Hoosier state of Indiana. Other cabinet manufacturers also made theirs in Indiana, so the term is widely used.

The Hoosier cabinet was advertised in catalogs, which helped with its popularity. The ads were aimed at housewives who wanted a “modern” kitchen. After all, this new cabinet was “delicious”, but still useful.

“Your kitchen! – furnished as completely and tastefully as any other room – how can you have it then with a little effort and cost, “the ad overwrote. It also said that a home-loving woman wants a “delicious, fresh and inviting” kitchen.

The statement may be dated, but the ad caught like wildfire. Families across the country wanted this all-in-one kitchen accessory. Most families could afford them at this point in the roaring 20s when America was prosperous.

After the Great Depression, the cabinets became less popular and were not produced again for a while. No one could afford luxury like this as the country could barely afford flour to feed their families.

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Vintage Hoosier cabinet

red flour sifter in hoosier cabinetLook in the gallery
Via Kitchen Concepts Inc.

You can’t find a vintage Hoosier case anywhere. And when you find one, it’s hard to tell if it’s authentic or not. Here are a few ways to tell if the Hoosier case is a real Hoosier or not.


A Hoosier has three areas. A deep lower cabinet, a work area (traditional porcelain) and low wall cabinets. If the counting room is made of wood, it can still be genuine. But the most authentic had porcelain or enamel counters.


Traditional Hoosier cabinets had drawers. These drawers were lined with tin and were made for storing bread. If the can is still intact, the cabinet is in good condition and probably authentic. While tin can last over the years, other additives are hard to keep.

Flour container

Most Hoosier cabinets had a flour tray and a sieve in the upper left cabinet. It would be hard to find one with the flour container still in it, but if you do, keep it! One with the original flour tray is very worthwhile.

Measurements and diagrams

Originally, the Hoosier cabinets had cards in the doors. They would list metrics, conversions and even have a place to write down what you needed. Some may have even included recipes in the door.

Postage stamp

Most older cabinets and furniture had stamps that dated them. There must be a stamp somewhere with the manufacturer’s name and date. If the date is before 1950, it is probably authentic. If it’s before 1940, it’s absolutely authentic.

Ask an appraiser

You can ask someone in an antique shop or an official appraiser if your Hoosier cabinet is genuine. You can even contact someone online and send pictures to them. Just be sure to ask someone who is not interested in buying it.

Modern Hoosier cabinet

While a vintage Hoosier closet is ideal, finding one is not easy, and when you do, it is difficult to find one that is affordable. Fortunately, you can get modern Hoosier cabinets that are similar to the traditional ones.

Amezquita 71 ″ Kitchen Pantry

Amezquita kitchen pantryLook in the gallery

This adorable Hoosier cabinet comes in four colors. You can get it in white or one of three wood grains available. The wood grains look more authentic, while the white one looks more modern. All four are pretty enticing.

Lewisburg Kitchen Pantry

Lewisburg hoosier pantryLook in the gallery

This Lewisburg very similar to what you would see in the early 1900s. It is narrow, but the structure is the same. The vintage feel of the grain that looks uncomfortable adds character and betrays the price tag.

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Alcott Hill Robicheaux cabinet

Robicheaux kitchen hoosierLook in the gallery

This piece from Alcott Hill has a lot of storage space. If you are planning to cut down on standard cabinets in favor of a Hoosier cabinet, this option should suit you. It only comes in one color, but white is quite versatile.

Rosalind Wheeler Bar Cabinet

bar cabinet antique white rosalind wheelerLook in the gallery

Rosalind Wheeler does a great job of choosing colors for this Hoosier cabinet. You can get it in gray or an antique white, which is the perfect color for a closet like this. The color and structure are similar to the traditional cabinets with table tops in porcelain.

Arlen modern cabinet

modern arlen hoosier cabinetLook in the gallery

If you want a more modern approach to the Hoosier cabinet, this is a great choice. It has the sleek design and contrasts that modern interior design favors. Still, the setup looks like a vintage Higher cabinet.

Red Barrel Studio Cabinet

white hoosier cabinet with glass doorsLook in the gallery

If glass doors are what attract you to the Hoosier case, then this one knows Red Barrel Studio is perfect for you. It has the classic look with glass cabinets. The only thing missing is a built-in sieve flour to grind!

Gracie Oaks Open Shelf Cabinet

walnut hoosier cabinet gracie oaksLook in the gallery

Open shelves were not wrinkled for storage of flour, sugar and other baking ingredients. Actually having a set of labeled jars are sweet, and has always been. So if open shelves pull you in, this cabinet is great.

Breaktime Coffee Cabinet

breaktime coffee kitchen cabinet blackLook in the gallery

This Break cabinet is not traditional, but it takes the Hoosier cabinet to the 21st century. There is space for a mini-fridge underneath and adjacent to the line in a kitchenette. This thing is perfect for dorms and studio apartments.

Cierrah Pantry Cabinet

Cierrah Kitchen PantryLook in the gallery

Finally we have Close the cabinet which is as adorable as possible. Although the cabinet doors are flat and the look is modern, there is a vintage flair in this cabinet that cannot be ignored. It is the perfect middle chair cabinet.

Hoosier Cabinet Options

hutch cabinet in dining room green
Via Archia Homes

If you can not get hold of a Hoosier case, do not worry. There are plenty of alternatives that work just as well and have just as much character. Since new manufacturers can not use the term “Hoosier”, many use these words instead.


A kitchen sink is very similar to a Hoosier cabinet. Hutches are a piece of furniture that can be used in any room, sometimes as a vanity. In recent years, the terms hutch and Hoosier cabinet have been used interchangeably.

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However, cabins were used long before Hoosier cabinets were invented. The word is also more forgiving since you are not talking about a brand or an era. Just a closet in a particular style that can be used anywhere.

Pie Safe

Pie safes are often seen at eateries that guessed it, pies! They look like wooden cabinets with many glass panels. Pie boxes were traditionally used to store pies, meat or other perishable. They add a dining room / bakery to your kitchen.

Because pie safes date back to German immigration to America, cake safes are usually made by the Amish. The Dutch community in Pennsylvania manufactures threshboxes to this day, and these are some of the only authentic threshboxes in the country.

China Cabinet

A china cabinet is a cabinet with a solid base, often with doors and a glass top. The glass plate is made to show porcelain and other knick-knacks. They are still quite popular in homes with antiques that need to be kept safe.

China’s cabinets are actually not from China, despite the name. They were made to show porcelain dishes that were actually originally made in China. The porcelain bowls are very fragile, which is why a special cupboard was made to protect them.

Welsh chest of drawers

A Welsh chest of drawers is a cabinet that resembles a porcelain cabinet only with optional glass. More often than not, the top is open shelf that sets it apart from the traditional Hoosier cabinet. Another name for a Welsh chest of drawers is a porcelain hut.

The Welsh chest of drawers is traditionally from Wales, hence the name. The cabinets were popular throughout Europe, but Wales took over the term we use to this day. They are used as cabinets, kitchen cabinets and general storage units.

Kitchen Buffet Combo

A kitchen buffet is the lower part of a Hoosier cupboard. To turn one into a Hoosier cabinet, just add a wall cabinet. You can even get one converted and customized, which is much cheaper than buying a Hoosier case directly.

If you get someone to build on the buffet, you can save a lot on material costs. All you need are small wall cabinets and something that attaches them to the bottom cabinets. Use an open shelf for an even cheaper version.

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