This $20 IKEA Chopping Board is so Versatile — Here are 3 Alternative Ways to Use it in Your Home

This functional kitchen buy can also make a great aesthetic statement

A dresser table with books stacked on a small wooden holder and a pendant lamp hanging from overhead
(Image credit: Medina Grillo (@grillodesigns))

Meandering through an IKEA store is an endless source of inspiration. From bedroom duvets to gardening shovels, there truly is something to satisfy every interior appetite. The iconic furniture store is like a confectionary of goodies for the home enthusiasts among us. 

Here at Livingetc, we're always impressed by a transformative IKEA hack, but as it turns out, it's not just versatile flat-packs that possess this 'hackability'. Even when it comes to the brand's more mundane household items such as chopping boards, there's more to their sleek and functional design than initially meets the eye. 

If you’re looking for a surprisingly versatile household item that functions in multiple ways while also boasting a simple and elegant look, the STOLTHET chopping board might be just the thing for you — and not necessarily for the reasons you might think. Here are three ideas to inspire your interior styling, and all you need to spend is $20. 

What is the IKEA STOLTHET?

A dresser table with a stack of books and a pendant light hanging from overhead

(Image credit: Medina Grillo (@grillodesigns))

If you're not familiar with IKEA and its Swedish jargon, the STOLTHET is a compact bamboo chopping board that comes on raised legs. This makes it an extremely functional, mess-free addition to your kitchen during meal prep, but it's aesthetic contributions have also caught our eye. 

In a video posted to TikTok that has amassed nearly 800,000 likes, interior stylist and home blogger Medina Grillo (@Grillo Designs) showcases three unexpected ways to use this bestselling IKEA kitchen staple, none of which are directly related to the original purpose it was designed for. 

With its two sturdy supports on either side, it’s easy to see how this chopping board lends itself well to being used in a number of innovative, and aesthetically pleasing ways, and professional organizer Di Ter Avest agrees. 'The IKEA STOLTHET chopping board has a neutral, modern design that attracts many,' she says. 'They have been used as a form to corral items not only to help keep things organized but also to add a touch of intentional design to the space.' Here are three ways Medina has styled the STOLTHET in her home that you can easily try yourself. 

1. Bookend

a neutral living room with bookshelves filled with objects and books

(Image credit: McGee & Co)

The first suggested idea in the now viral video is using the STOLTHET chopping board as a bookend on your shelving or bedside table, with the two supports on the chopping board acting as columns to hold up your books on either end. 

Ben Soreff, professional organizer at House to Home Organizing, explains that bookends are often a functional necessity. 'Books, unless they are War & Peace, typically don't have enough weight to hold themselves up, so book ends allow them to line up correctly.'

The video shows just how seamlessly the chopping board fits in with a beautifully aesthetic home — with its clean lines and minimalist appearance, it is an ideal organizational hack that lends itself perfectly to a clutter-free bookshelf or bedside table. Professional organizer Melissa Gugni is on board with this hack, too. 'For bookends, it would take a little bit of playing around with the right size books to fit it but I think the end result is very cute,' she says. 


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2. Laptop or Monitor Stand

If you’re a bookworm who has a staggering collection of books that would put a library to shame, it perhaps might not be practical to use the chopping board as a bookend. There are only so many books this relatively small piece of kit can handle!

In which case, it might be wiser to opt for Medina's second suggestion, which is using the chopping board as a laptop or monitor stand. According to Ben, this idea may be more practical than using it as a bookend, due to the risk of it getting lost or overwhelmed on a crowded shelf. 'The danger with small shelves is that items will get lost or shoved underneath,’ he explains. ‘In that regard, using it as laptop stand makes sense.’

Using a laptop or monitor stand is always advisable in a home office. ‘Laptop stands raise the laptop to prevent repetitive stress injuries in the wrist and neck,' notes Ben. 'Additionally, they can angle the camera better when on Zoom calls.’

3. Tiered Tray

a kitchen with a brick wall backsplash

(Image credit: deVOL)

Alternatively, if you want to stay more closely aligned to the STOLTHET's original purpose, using the board as a tiered tray on your kitchen countertop is another option. This use makes it easy to style the likes of coffee canisters or oil dispensers, while also preventing any mess from staining your surface. 

In the video, Medina showcases the variety of objects that can be perched atop the chopping board when used as a tiered tray including olive oil, cookbooks, and a pestle and mortar. Melissa explains that this is an aesthetic way to put your prized kitchen possessions on display. 'I love using trays or stands in a kitchen to give levels and visual interest and to section off different "stations" on a countertop,' she says. 

According to Di, this decor idea could be used in other rooms beyond the kitchen, too. ‘For example, you can use it as a centerpiece on a dining table, coffee table, kitchen counter, shelf, or sideboard to group similar items together and create a cohesive and organized display,’ she says. ‘You can place condiments and spices on a kitchen chopping board or arrange candles and decorative objects on a coffee table. In the bathroom, it could be used to store your everyday essentials.’

Di also recommends playing with the dimensions of the objects you choose to decorate it with. ‘Create visual interest by layering items of varying heights on the IKEA STOLTHET chopping board,' she advises. 'This can be achieved by placing taller items towards the back and shorter items towards the front, adding depth and dimension to the display.’

Who knew a chopping board could be so versatile? IKEA really is the place to shop for a never-ending supply of interior styling inspiration - all you have to do is think outside the box!

Our favorite picks for styling your STOLTHET

Katie Baxter
Trainee Writer

Katie is a freelance writer and MA student at City, University of London studying Magazine Journalism. Katie discovered her passion for lifestyle journalism after finishing her BA at The University of Oxford, when she started pitching to major lifestyle publications and covering various topics from popular culture to wellness. She is a regular contributor at Well+Good, where she writes experiment-based beauty and fitness pieces.