I spent last weekend cleaning and organizing my pantry and freezer. It is so important to rotate your stockpile and identify what you have on hand. Otherwise, items are forgotten and they expire. Of course each and every one of us has a different pantry space. So today both Litsa and I will share pictures and ideas for pantry organization.
I have a significant stockpile so my “pantry” stretches from a closet under the stairs to two cabinets with pullout drawers underneath our kitchen island. The first thing I did was empty my pantry and cabinets of foods. This is what Litsa referred to as “Spring Cleaning” last week! I checked expiration dates on all items before placing them back in the cabinets. When putting the items back, place items that expire first towards the front of the cabinet.
I like to take items out of their boxes and place them in baskets or clear shoe boxes. Food packaged in boxes takes up a lot of room. The basket above contains three boxes of oatmeal packets and a box of instant drink mix. If I would have left those items in their original boxes it would have taken up a ton of space.
I love the pullout drawers in my cabinets! It makes finding products so much easier. I arranged each row of cans according to contents: beans in one row, tomatoes in another and gravy in the last row. I have another whole pullout with cans of soup and canned fruit.
In the closet area I have a black metal shelf unit to help organize additional food, pet supplies and some small appliances. I use a lot of the clear shoe boxes in the pantry and ditch the original packaging. You can apply labels to the outside of the containers too.
On one of the lower shelves in the pantry I keep a shoe box container with kids snacks in it. I typically keep the lid off of this box so my boys can easily grab a snack if I am busy and can’t assist them.
Our pantry has small wooden shelves inside it and a bi-fold door to walk into it! Thus, it’s a great, small space to organize our dry goods, spices, & more. I place canned items in one spot by vegetable colors or can’s contents, spices in another place, etc. Items that have boxes that aren’t necessary, I purge while I’m unpacking and organizing items after my grocery trips. My husband will tell you that I don’t like boxes. Ha! They take up too much space and it’s one more step to staying organized for me.
Additionally, in our pantry, I house extra coffee, sugar, tea, etc. on higher shelves. These are my stockpiled items that I buy when items are on sale and/or when I have coupons for them. Small appliances: toaster, grilled cheese maker, etc. are also stored in pantry for easy access.
One thing that Litsa and I learned about each other is that we both can’t stand boxes and bulky packaging!
We hope that this post gives you some ideas on how you can better organize your pantry and food stockpile. Stay tuned as we continue the series Organized Room to Room.