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How to Organize a Kitchen Pantry

Kitchen Pantry organization TipsOne of the most daunting spring cleaning projects is cleaning and organizing the kitchen. The kitchen is where everyone gathers for meals, conversations with family and friends, homework and other get-togethers. A kitchen can easily get cluttered with everyday items like backpacks, purses, books, and mail. Kitchen counters can also be covered with kitchen accessories, food items and cooking utensils take up a lot of space to make a small space look very cluttered.

The kitchen pantry is one of the most visited areas in a kitchen! The pantry is used to store everything from dry goods to pet food.  It can easily get over full if we buy too many of a staple that we might have already had. Or if we buy food basics, but never eat them!  During a spring cleaning or kitchen organization project, the pantry should be one of the first places that get cleaned and organized.  Once it is organized, it will make cooking and baking that much easier.

When you are finished cleaning and organizing your pantry, keep it organized by only using it for food stuff and not for storing other items such as kitchen accessories, plates, pot and pans and other supplies that you have accumulated over the years.  A self storage unit is a great option for additional household storage for items such as little used kitchen appliances, excess pots and pans and other kitchen accessories.  Stop N Stor has a wide variety of storage units, from climate controlled to non-climate controlled, that are perfect to store these additional kitchen accessories that you just can’t part with. If you just have a few accessories to store, then a 5×5 storage unit would be perfect, if you need to store larger items, then consider storage unit sizes from 5×10 to 10×30!

Kitchen Pantry Organization Tips

  1. To start your kitchen pantry organization project, remove all of the items that are currently on the shelves. Throw out any expired food. Spices should not be kept more than a year. Donate items that will not be used before the expiration date to a local food pantry.
  2. After you have taken all the items out of the pantry, wipe down the shelves and change any shelving paper. Sweep, mop and vacuum the floors of the pantry.
  3. Once you have thoroughly cleaned the pantry, take time to sort the items that you will be returning to the pantry that into categories. Keep like items together. Sort the items as follows:
  • Dry goods: Sugar, flour or other baking goods
  • Canned Goods
  • Dried Food: pastas, dried beans, rice
  • Boxed Items: Cereal, Crackers, Mixes
  • Spices
  • Beverages
  • Root Vegetables such as potatoes and onions
  • Pet food and treats
  1. Create specific zones in the pantry for each food category. This will make it easier for you to find the items that you need when you need them! Place the bulkier and heavy items, such a pet food on the bottom shelves of the pantry. Put lighter items on higher shelves and place cans and jars on mid-to-lower level shelves. Have the items that you access the most within easy reach.
  2. Invest in containers and bins to keep your pantry organized. Glass or plastic containers with locking lids are perfect for cereals, rice, pasta, sugar, flour and children’s treats. Putting the items in containers will also allow for easy categorization and keeps your pantry looking organized. Store root vegetables, such as potatoes and onions, in a bin or basket without a lid. Bagged items such as nuts, chips or dried beans can also be stored in storage bins.
  3. Keep spices in air tight jars or tins either on your kitchen counter or in the pantry.
  4. When putting away food, place newer food behind older food on the shelf, so you will use the older food first before it expires. This is very helpful for canned goods and pasta sauces.
  5. Create an inventory list for your kitchen pantry items. This will help you track what you need, so you will not over buy and end up wasting food. The inventory list can also be used as a grocery list when you need to replenish the supplies.