Build a Decorative Pot and Pan Rack with Lighting


This pot and pan rack beats them all because it looks permanent and it has lighting inside to brighten up the counter top.

A hanging pot and pan rack is perfect for kitchens with a lack of storage space and those looking for a focal point or a little bit of drama. This one is especially nice because it attaches to the ceiling and conceals extra lighting that makes the island or counter top more functional.

Shopping List:

  • 1×2 pine lumber
  • 2×2 pine lumber
  • 1×12 pine lumber
  • Decorative molding
  • Finish nails
  • Molly bolts
  • 2-inch wood screws
  • Wood glue
  • Heavy-duty screw hooks
  • Satin-finish paint
  • Water based satin-finish polyurethane

Materials on Hand:

  • Table saw
  • Miter saw
  • Nail gun with nails
  • Drill with spade bits
  • 150- and 220-grit sandpaper
  • Tack cloth
  • Paint brushes
  • Awl



1. Cut 2 pieces of 1×12 lumber, each 50 inches long, and 2 pieces of 1×2 lumber, each 28 inches long. Assemble these pieces into a frame using wood glue and a nail gun.

2. Use the miter saw to cut decorating molding to length using 45 degree angles. Place the decorative trim around the top and bottom of the frame and install with good glue and the nail gun.

3. Using 2×2 lumber, cut 4 cleats each 3 inches long. Drill pilot holes through the center of the cleat to accommodate the molly bolts.  Attach the cleats to the corners of the inside edge of the frame where the frame will meet the ceiling.

4. Attach the cleats by drilling pilot holes and securing with drywall screws and wood glue.

5. Sand the entire box; remove dust with a tack cloth. Paint inside and outside of box and trim as desired. When dry, paint all surfaces with two coats of satin-finish water base polyurethane.

6. Mark position of hooks. Drill pilot holes in bottom edge and screw hooks in position.

7. Decide where to place the frame on the ceiling. Mark the position of the frame by pushing the awl into the ceiling through the pilot holes in the cleats. Drill pilot holes through the ceiling with a spade bit to fit the molly bolts at the location marks. Place frame in position and secure to the ceiling using the molly bolts through the cleats. Firmly tighten the molly bolts.

When drilling the pilot holes in the ceiling for the molly bolts, place a paper cup on the drill to catch all the dust.

The toughest challenge of this project is hanging it. You’ll need to recruit a partner (pizza makes a great bribe). One of you will need to hold the frame in position while the other will need to do the attaching. If you are lucky, you’ll have a ceiling joist in the right spot for attaching at least one side or end of the frame.

If the center of the room isn’t a convenient place to hang a rack for pots and utensils, consider hanging them as a functional window topper.  Just choose a metal drapery rod in an appropriate weight and add a few “S” hooks to hand most of the pans and utensils in style.  Or, add a  board with “S” shaped hangers along the wall edge of the soffit as shown in the photo.


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