The kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where your family gathers to chat, cook, eat, and more. With people coming in and out of the kitchen and pantry, this often means these spaces are the quickest to become messy and disorganized. Here are a few tips to organizing the pantry and keeping it mess free.
Start Fresh – Sort through the pantry and get rid of any spices or food that are expired. Next, create a staging area that you will use as a workspace to sort the contents of your pantry. You’ll need a big empty surface such as an island or table. Get out your recycling and trash bins too. This will get messier before it gets clean and organized.
Empty Out Your Pantry (Yes, all of it!) – Take everything out of your pantry and sort them into the following categories:
- Keep – Sort these items into smaller categories as you go such as baking, canned goods, snacks, etc.
- Toss – Empty wrappers and bags, and expired foods
- Recycle – Empty containers that are recyclable
- Donate – Food that’s not yet expired but you won’t use yourself
- Move – Items that should be put away in another part of your home
We know this looks like a big mess but promise it will be worth it. Trust the process!
Clean It – Now that everything is out of the pantry, get in there and clean it really good. Start at the top and work your way down. Vacuum and clean the floors too. Doesn’t that look amazing?!
Store It – This is where you’ll see the biggest impact. Start decanting items into matching baskets and pretty containers. You can find both on a budget, so you don’t need to spend a fortune to make it look good and be useful. Try our white metal storage containers that are already conveniently labeled. If you use containers that aren’t labeled, be sure to add your own so there is no excuse for anyone to put things back in the wrong place. Make sure you have a container to hold clips and fasteners for bags too. Our metal crock organizer would be perfect for holding clips and other items that need to have easy access.
Create Zones – You’re getting close to the finish line now! This part is crucial because it will create a system that your family will catch on to quickly (we hope) and use to keep the pantry organized. Whether you are only working with a few shelves, or a huge walk-in pantry, use zones to keep organized. This is the part where you will put everything back in its place. Here are some zone suggestions:
- Household and emergency supplies
- Cleaning supplies
- Paper products
- Canned goods
- Snacks (we’ve got beautiful sweet and salty containers to keep those organized!)
- Baking ingredients
- Breakfast items
- Pasta and quick meals
- Wine and beverages
Use the Walls and Back of the Door – Don’t waste any valuable space when creating your zones and organizing your pantry. Use hooks on the walls to hang step stools, cleaning tools, and aprons. Use an over the door shoe holder on the back of the door to store small items and use large baskets on the floor to hold larger supplies like toilet paper and paper towels.
Create a Communication Center – Tired of looking at the notes and messages on the front of the refrigerator? Consider creating a communication center inside your pantry. Hang a dry erase board and/or corkboard inside your pantry. Be sure to keep an eraser and markers handy and close by. It’s a safe bet everyone in your house will use it.
Now, stand back and admire your work. You now have a system in place where upkeep will be minimal, and you’ll only need to tidy it up every season or so. We pinky swear!