Pantries can sometimes be tricky spaces to organize. Many homeowners are limited on space and think that they’ll never be able to change things up, so they leave it to be a hopeless tangle of boxes and bags, leading to unnecessary mess and waste of forgotten food items. It doesn’t have to be this way though. Here are a few practical ideas to take a pantry from chaotic to calm.
Consider what you find yourself reaching into the pantry for most: baking ingredients, your spice collection, canned goods, etc. Then, add caster wheels to a small shelving unit (or purchase a small wheeled cart) and park it inside the pantry. You’ll be able to fit a lot more on a cart than you might on a shelf of a similar size, and you can pull it out for easy ingredient access when the cooking inspiration strikes.
Narrow pantry shelves are often a recipe for tumbling boxes and jumbled bags, so consider purchasing roomy bins the same depth as your shelves for a solution that will wrangle almost anything you can throw at them. For extra credit, add bin labels to organize food by type for quick access. This same solution can be great for corraling small appliances, gadgets or infrequently used tools as needed.
Jars and Tubs
Rather than an unsightly array of dry goods in a multitude of boxes or poorly sealed bags, keep your food fresher (and cuter) in airtight jars and tubs. Plastic bins are generally inexpensive, but may not offer as tight of a seal as glass containers often do. However, you don’t necessarily need to purchase a whole set of fancy jars to organize everything well. Start saving large glass jars or other durable, lidded containers to gradually transfer your dry goods into. Alternatively, consider purchasing containers secondhand to build up a collection over time. While this may not have the same effect as a picture-perfect array of matching containers, you can bring together an eclectic assortment by organizing them by size or making use of matching labels.
An organized pantry need not be out of reach. A perfectly organized space might happen over the course of a well-planned afternoon or be spread over the span of several months, but in any case, it will be time well invested. With a little bit of creativity, you can design a well-organized space that you look forward to using.