How to Organize the Pantry: Done-in-a-Day Organizing Project
Are you craving a done-in-a-day organizing project that can be completed in small bites? This post, how to organize the pantry, is going to help you with that particular challenge. Why not organize the pantry and create a list of staples that are appropriate for your lifestyle and your budget, especially if you buy in bulk and own an array of cooking and baking appliances which you store in your pantry.
Open-shelving creates a hallway leading to the sink. Image used with permission from California Closets
Tips and Suggestions – How to Organize the Pantry
- Begin by discarding anything stale, spoiled, or expired. Reminder: dry goods are susceptible to pest infestations and infestations begin with invisible-to-the-eye eggs. Put dry goods in the freezer for 5 days to sterilize them; it’ll kill eggs and bugs.
- Vacuum and clean the shelves and walls. Wipe the underside of shelves too.
- Use either glass or sturdy plastic containers with tight fitting lids to hold dry goods such as flour, sugar, pasta, teabags, coffee beans, and cereal. Buy square-shaped containers because they are more efficient space-savers. Look for flat lids since they can be stacked.
- Group like items together: breakfast items, snacks, baking goods, etc. Then, create groups within groups (for example separate the tuna from the tomatoes and the soup from the beans in the canned goods section.)
- Label the shelves (condiments, beverages, etc.) as well as the individual containers (baking chips, whole wheat flour, rice)
- Don’t forget to save room to store your paper products too: napkins, paper towels, lunch bags, foils, wraps, etc.
- Divide your pantry into zones with separate areas for the ABCs: Appliances, Boxed goods + Baking essentials, Canned goods and Soft packages.
- Measure the ABCs ingredients in your pantry; know the basic measurements and add a little bit of “grab room” between shelves.
Hooks installed under shelving add extra storage; image used with permission from California Closets
Know Your Space
Suggestions for Approximate Measurements Between Shelves
- Appliances, large pots + pans, serving trays: 24 inches +
- Boxed foods: 8 – 16 inches
- Cans: 3 – 7 inches
- Soft packages: 4 – 9 inches
- Install shelves that vary in depth; tiered shelves allow better visibility.
Now, let’s move onto creating a list of staples that are the building blocks of many meals.
Doorless cubbies keep things within reach; image used with permission from California Closets
Make it Easier! Getting Techie
I discovered Zip List while traveling with my friend, Margaret Lukens. She and I were exchanging ideas about electronically clipping recipes, techniques for organizing clipped coupons and recipes, methods of keeping various grocery lists organized, cooking, baking, candy making and entertaining. During that conversation, Margaret introduced me to Zip List and from that moment on, life got much easier. (Hey, that’s what friends are for, right?)
Since I shop at several different stores and buy specific ingredients from each store, this app is especially appealing to me. I absolutely love having the ability to store all my lists in one place. [File this under, TMI but, I even keep a "vacation grocery list" for my family trips to the coast since that list is completely from my weekly grocery list ]
Oh, did I mention that Zip List is totally free? Isn’t that delicious?
If you have a favorite app or a top ten list of staples in your pantry please share in the comment section below.
I hope these tips on how to organize the pantry help you get this “done-in-a-day” organizing project completed! BTW, you know that I love comments – sooooooo, you know what to do right? Just leave one in the comment section below.