Organizing the Pantry

An organized pantry has MANY benefits:

1) Less wasted food: Items won’t get lost in the back so you can use them before they expire.

2) Easier to create a shopping list: Identify what you have and what you need quickly – keep the grocery list in the pantry so everyone in the family can write down items as needed.

3) Everyone knows where everything is and belongs: make a special area for the kid’s after school snacks stocked with healthy choices. Label shelves and bins.

4) Saves money: Other than less wasted food, you will no longer buy items you “think” you need.

5) More efficient cooking: Everything is right where you need it, especially when you organize in sections – all your baking goods will be readily available so you don’t have to spend time hunting down the baking powder.

6) Fast menu planning: It is easy to plan meals in advance when you know exactly what you have. My system is to list proteins, grains & starches, and fresh produce, then I match them up for meals throughout the week. I do this before or after every grocery visit.

How to do it:

1) Remove ALL the items from your pantry.

2) Go through each item and throw away anything that is expired or spoiled.

3) Identify your food categories: baking, snacks, beverages, breads, soups, etc.

4) Put each food item into a category.

5) Designate a section in the pantry for each category.

6) Label each section.

Category Suggestions:

1) Baking: I keep all my baking items in one bin. When I am ready to bake I pull it out and I am ready to go!

2) Entertaining: Keep a basket of disposable dinnerware, napkins, and trays so you are ready at a moments notice.

3) Fast Meals: Keep a couple of bins with all the non-perishables you need for a couple fast meals during the week. For example: pasta & sauce.

4) Cans and Jars: sort by type – vegies, fruits, soups, beans, etc.

5) Snack basket: filled with healthy snack options for kids to grab after school.

6) Packed Lunches: keep bags, napkins, plastic utensils as well as non-perishable lunch options for super fast and easy lunch prep.

7) Breakfasts: Cereals, breads and other breakfast items should be kept in one space to keep hectic mornings less stressful.

8) Baby: Keep all baby’s food, formula, food and snacks together.

9) Tools and Appliances: If you have space, keep bulky kitchen utensils and seldom used appliances in the pantry.

10) Create your own areas – specifically for your family’s needs.

Great Pantry Organizing Products:

1) Tiered expandable shelf organizers raise the items in back so you can see them.

2) Under shelf baskets can increase your storage space.

3) Stackable can racks keep cans in place.

4) Over-the-door pantry organizers are great for small items like pudding and spices.

5) Over-the-door pocket organizers also make perfect snack stations.

6) Turn-tables keep items from getting lost in the corners.

7) Cabinet door spice clips are great for your most used spices.

8) Pull-out pantry shelves help you see what’s in the back.

9) Packet organizer bins keep your spice packets neat and tidy. Works for beverage and tuna packets too!

10) Chalkboard labels can be reused when you reorganize!

11) Baby food pouch organizers mount underneath a shelf for convenient space saving storage.

12) Clear stackable containers are great for bulk items like cereal and grains. Make sure they lock air tight for freshness.

13) Pull down spice racks keep spices organized – make sure you label them!

14) Divided pantry bins are great for small items.

15) Stacking shelves can double your storage space.

Bonus Points if you add a Menu Planning Board: Make a place for a weekly menu, meals ideas, recipes, grocery lists for each meal and coupons!

Need help setting up an organized system for your pantry? Give us a call! 937-672-7567 or visit our

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