More Than Meatballs

The 50 Best Things to Buy from IKEA


February 6, 2020 Home By Photo by Chandler Bondurant
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Most people probably don’t want to think about how many hours they’ve spent trying (and failing) to navigate the fluorescent maze that calls itself “Ikea.” The Swedish superstore is filled to the brim with amazingly affordable home decor, storage solutions and meatballs. To make the shopping experience less overwhelming for the everyday shopper, we combed through the retailer’s entire online inventory to curate some of its best products.

Tekla Dish Towel

Do you avoid laundry as much as the rest of us? Grab a few of these towels next time you visit your local Ikea. They’re amazingly inexpensive and they work great as napkins, too.

Nyskoljd Dish Drying Mat

This is perfect whether your dish rack is constantly overflowing, or if you need somewhere to air dry those bulky pots and pans.

Rinnig Dish Brush

Your hands will never smell spongey again thanks to this handy dish brush. The handle has a built-in suction cup, so you can prop it up by your sink when you’re done scrubbing dishes.

Tradlos Honey Dipper & Tea Measure

If you’re in need of a hostess gift or a small token of appreciation, this $3 set makes a super classy present — especially wrapped up with some loose-leaf tea.

Sylt Lingon Lingonberry Preserves

It’s (almost) impossible to leave Ikea without picking up a jar of this stuff. It feels way more exotic than strawberry jam, even if you eat yours on toast instead of with traditional Swedish meatballs.

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Ikea 365+ Carafe

This carafe owes its brilliance to the cork stopper. Use it to store leftover coffee or homemade juice, and tack a piece of paper to the top with the date on it. Hosting a party? Use thumbtacks and labels to identify the contents.

Tokig Salad Spinner

Salad spinners are oddly satisfying — toss in some freshly washed vegetables, put some elbow grease into it and find yourself with bone-dry produce.

Blanda Matt Serving Bowl

These bamboo bowls come in a variety of sizes to hold everything from snacks to stews. Or use it as a catchall bowl for your loose change and car keys.

Lattviktig Oven Dish

The Lattviktig oven dish can go straight from the oven to the dining table. It’s made of durable tempered glass and is dishwasher safe.

Pruta Food Container

For $16 you get 17 containers in seven sizes, so you can afford to “lose” one or two in the office dishwasher.

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Ikea 365+ Glass

These stackable glasses are highly durable and can hold hot and cold beverages. You’ll definitely be using these 365 days a year.

Krispig Cake Carrier

We chose this cake carrier because of its clever, versatile design. One side of the base tray is smooth, ideal for cakes or pies, while the other has ridges, so you can arrange cupcakes, muffins, etc. It’s also quite tall, so don’t worry about adding another layer to that birthday cake.

Triabo Welcome Door Mat

Nothing’s more welcoming than a welcome mat that says “Welcome.”

Mulig Clothes Rack

No closet, no problem. This sleek, simple clothing rack comes together quickly and looks great in bedrooms of all sizes.

Allehanda Mixing Bowl

Everyone who loves to bake needs one of these bowls. The lid has an opening for a whisk, so your batter won’t splatter everywhere, and a spout streamlines pouring. If you need to chill dough overnight or transport a fruit salad, just pop the lid back on.

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Ficus Lyrata Potted Plant

A fiddle-leaf fig plant for less than $20? That’s right — Ikea’s plant section is underrated and overlooked.

Klipsk Bed Tray

Like breakfast in bed? Make it less messy with this simple tray — there’s a lip around the edge to catch any crumbs and spills, as well as a groove to prop up a book or tablet. The legs also fold up for easy storage.

Sortera Recycling Bin

Stack two of these to separate paper and plastic — or use them to sort laundry, dog food or toys.

Adelsten Mortar and Pestle

Some don’t realize how essential a mortar and pestle is until they taste the difference between freshly ground spices and the store-bought stuff. Spend $15 and get one made from marble. You won’t regret it.

Lennart Drawer Unit

Add the Lennart to your office space so you can finally get that clutter off your desk. The drawer unit is lightweight and a pair of casters make it easy to move around.

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Saxborga Bathroom Jar Set

Take your Q-tips out of the box and put them in one of these jars. The cork lids, besides looking stylish, help them stack without worrying about tipping over, and they look pretty cool too.

Skaerig Wall Clock

This minimalist wall clock features silent quartz movement for those who are tired of hearing the constant ticking of a regular clock. The Skaerig’s deep navy color with gold accents make this clock look like it’s worth more than $15.

Gladom Tray Table

These steel side tables are lightweight even though they’re made of steel. Use the removable top to double as a serving tray.

Bojmal Throw Blanket

Add some flare to your sofa for only $20.

Fado Table Lamp

This tiny orb of light is a fun way to add some brightness to your room and your mood. Add a smart light bulb to add a pop of color to your space.

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Raskog Utility Cart

Whether you need more room for your desk accessories or your kitchen gear, the Raskog will give you extra storage space in a tiny package.

Satsumas Plant Stand

Give all of your plants their time to shine. Your call on whether the plants you put on it are real or artificial.

Brankis Laundry Basket

If your dirty clothes are piling up on the floor, you’re doing your laundry wrong already. Get the Brankis so no one has to deal with that eye sore.

Tradfri Gateway

The Tradfri Gateway and Ikea Home app work in conjunction to give users complete control over their Ikea smart home products. Set timers and control devices remotely with Ikea’s affordable smart home hub.

Skadis Pegboard Organizer

Ikea’s Skadis collection is the perfect way to keep your gear organized so you aren’t scrambling for that one item. Start with the pegboard organizer and add accompanying accessories for a customizable way to stay neat and tidy.

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Lurvig Pet Bed

Pamper your pet with a comfy new bed — the minimalistic design won’t take away from your decor. Plus, the cushion has a removable cover for easy cleanup.

Ranarp Pendant Lamp

The classic, slightly old-fashioned design of this lamp makes it look a lot more expensive than forty bucks.

Lillevorde Rug

Add instant style to any space with one of these low-pile rugs. This rug really ties the room together, with its perfect balance of warm and cool colors.

Hektar Floor Lamp

This lamp isn’t going to light up a whole room. Use the Hektar’s adjustable lamp head to concentrate light at target spots for whatever the activity calls for.

Lovbacken Side Table

Everyone and their mother will think this distinctive table is a one-in-a-million mid-century modern piece and not an easy-to-assemble find from Ikea. The black and brown combo ensures this table will work with any kind of furniture.

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Billy Bookcase

One of Ikea’s most popular pieces, the Billy bookcase can be used for so much more than books — think shoe storage, tchotchke display, temporary TV stand. To boot, it promises one of the easiest assemblies in the entire catalog.

Odger Chair

The Odger is a basic chair made of renewable wood and recycled plastic so you can sit comfortably and responsibly. And it looks like a certain molded plastic side chair from the 1950s.

Poang Armchair

Few Ikea pieces are as iconic as the Poang armchair, with its birch frame and high back. Add the complementing Poang ottoman for an Eames-esque setup at a fraction of the price.

Symfonisk WiFi Bookshelf Speaker

Our tech writer already declared this Sonos speaker a no-brainer for most people, but we just can’t stop raving about it. The Symfonisk bookshelf speaker, and the Symfonisk table lamp, are compatible with other Sonos speakers, so it’s the cheapest way to expand your Sonos ecosystem.

Brimnes Wardrobe

This narrow wardrobe is perfect for small spaces because it’s tall, slim, and holds a lot. Use it in lieu of a coat closet or store everything that won’t fit in your bureau.

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Hovet Mirror

Mirrors are a great way to give off the appearance of more space in a tiny home. And, of course, they’re great for checking yourself out too.

Malm Four-Drawer Chest

The Malm chest is the go-to dresser for post-grad homes. It’s streamlined — thanks to its lack of handles — and is made from a real wood veneer that’ll age as gracefully as you.

Bernhard Bar Stool

Reviewers praise the comfort and durability of these sleek bar stools. They’re clean, easy to assemble and, thanks to their minimalist design, look great in just about any setting.

Trollberget Desk Chair

Not ready to commit to a standing desk? This sleek stool promises to help you “sit actively,” strengthen your spine and give you a healthy posture. Plus it comes with a 10-year warranty.

Fyrtur Smart Blackout Blinds

Ikea has been tackling smart home gear lately, and its blackout blinds are a standout of the collection. Add the Tradfri gateway to control the blinds from the Ikea Home app and Google Home devices. And for parents, these blinds are cordless, which makes them safer for children.

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Markus Task Chair

Some of the best office chair can cost upwards of $2,000. For sub-$200 at Ikea, you get a comfortable chair that’ll adjust to your seating preferences so you can sit pretty for hours on end.

Strandmon Wing Chair

Over 200 5-star ratings on Ikea’s website sealed this chair’s spot on our list. Harkening back to Ikea’s original 1950s design, it comes in eight great colors and patterns, from understated gray to a vibrant palm print. The removable seat cover is machine-washable, meaning this chair will look brand new for years to come.

Kloven Outdoor Loveseat

Make the most of your outdoor space with this loveseat, crafted from solid eucalyptus wood.

Nordli Bed Frame with Storage

If you live in a small apartment, it’s hard to choose between comfort and storage, which is why this bed is a gamechanger. Whether you’re storing clothes, shoes, books or blankets, you’ll be pleased with how much the Nordli holds.

Stockholm TV Unit

Use this TV unit to store your Blu-ray player (if you still have one), your video games and other bits and bobs so they’re out of sight and out of mind.

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