How to Organize a Pantry: A Step-by-Step Guide
Published in 8.22.2023
Navigating your pantry may seem like a never ending battle against clutter, but it doesn’t have to be! With a little planning, this seemingly overwhelming task can be broken down into simple, manageable steps. Let's dive into this guide on how to get your pantry in tiptop shape!
Pantry Makeover Step I: Start Fresh
Empty Your Pantry: Take everything out. This may seem daunting, but starting with a blank canvas allows you to see the space with fresh eyes. Also, look how neat those empty shelves are!
Clean the Shelves: Wipe down all the shelves, sweep the floor, and get rid of those crumbs and spills.
Time To Organize! Sort and Categorize
Check Expiration Dates: As you take items out, check their expiration dates. Throw out anything that's expired or looks icky.
Purge: Get rid of those items that have been sitting in your closet for months that you know you won’t be using.
Categorize Items: Group like items together. Things like grains, canned goods, cereal, or snacks.
Taking Your Pantry Organization To The Next Level: Invest in Storage Solutions
Use Clear Containers: Transfer items like grains or pasta into clear, airtight containers. This keeps them fresh longer and allows you to see exactly what you have. Plus they look great!
Label Everything: to "Use labels – think chalkboard, stickers, or even a label maker – to clearly mark containers. This ensures you can find what you need quickly.
Baskets and drawers: Wicker or metal baskets are great for grouping items together for easy access and visibility.
For example, Modular Closets makes a neat wire pull-out basket that accomplishes this: .
As well as “shelf pull-outs” which are essentially shallow sliding drawers that are super versatile storage-wise.
You can put baskets on them or store your groceries “au-naturel”.
Of course, you can always go all-in and invest in a complete pantry system with Modular Closets. Start by using our closet design tool to help visualize your pantry with a 3D sketch and modify it to fit your needs.
Implementing a System To Maintain Pantry Organization
Zone Your Pantry: Dedicate specific shelves or areas for specific categories. For instance, keep all your baking supplies together, all snacks in one zone, and so on.
Store Frequently Used Items at Eye Level: Items you use often should be easy to reach. The less frequently used items can be stored on higher or lower shelves.
Think of the Kids: If you have children, consider creating a kid-friendly zone within their reach, filled with healthy snacks and items they frequently use. It will also prevent unnecessary spills from eager searching hands.
Rotate and Replenish
Practice FIFO: No, it’s not the bellow of a giant bent on destroying all your hard work; "First In, First Out" is a grocery store hack. When you buy new items, place them behind the older stock. This ensures older items get used first and reduces waste.
Regularly Audit: At least twice a month, take a few minutes to go through your pantry, checking expiration dates and seeing what needs replenishing or discarding. It’s surprisingly satisfying!
Make Your Pantry Visually Appealing
When things look good, we feel good! Plus, we're more likely to maintain the order. Arrange items in a way that's visually appealing to you!
- Storing items in clear jars or matching containers for a unified look.
- Using fancy labels to give your pantry a polished touch.
- Keeping a consistent color scheme or theme.
- Lighting: Consider adding wireless motion-sensored lights, like the ones sold by Modular Closets. Good lighting is a game-changer!
- Keeping items stored at a consistent height. It’s a simple fix to the disorganized look.
Maintain the Awesome
Involve the Family: Get the household excited! If you have small children, show them where they can keep their snacks, and maybe set up a reward system for maintaining it.
Adjust as Needed: As your needs and habits change, so might your organization strategy. Revisit and reorganize whenever you feel like your pantry needs it.
There you have it! A clutter-free, organized pantry is not just a pipe dream; it’s totally achievable! A tidy and well-organized pantry can truly transform your cooking and grocery shopping habits. It's not just about aesthetics; it's about creating a space that works for you and your family. One that makes meal prep a breeze, snack attacks simple, and the morning cereal hustle a grab-and-go rather than grab-and-groan. You’ll get the sweet satisfaction of opening your pantry door and seeing everything neatly arranged and easy to reach. And if all else fails, you’ll still have the joy of rediscovering that long-lost chocolate stash while rummaging through the clutter ;) Happy organizing!