Perhaps the pantry is the busiest cupboard in the home, hands big and small in and out all day rummaging through the food.
And everyone’s pantry has them… a random collection of ingredients from recipes or diets that have long since been forgotten, taking up space and gathering dust.
OR multiple bottles of the same condiment bought because the originals have been camouflaged by newer items, pushing them into the deep, dark bowels of a shelf.
This will be one of the best projects you have ever undertaken – it feels SO GOOD when the pantry is organised!! And no, it doesn’t have to cost the earth!
- Begin by removing EVERYTHING from the pantry (use the ironing board to create extra temporary benchtop space)
- Clear out all expired items, including the ones in containers you haven’t used in months (or years!)
- Sort remaining items into groups and decide which shelf will work best for which group
- The top shelf is really hard to reach or even see – do not store very heavy items here, it is difficult to get them down and they may fall on someone.
- Rather use the top shelf for extra supplies (like flour, rice, bottles of wine, cake mixes you bought on special, etc.)
- If you are planning to replace your containers, or get ones if you don’t have any – wait till there is a 50% sale on the value brands.
- Choose see-through containers if you can, and definitely consider square or rectangular ones – they have more capacity and are much more space saving than round containers.
- Having a bigger tub or container with a lid to keep all your small baking supplies for example, de-clutters the pantry very quickly. And when you need these, you pull out the whole tub and all your little things are in one place.
- Fixing a DIY spice rack inside the pantry door will make your pantry instantly bigger. If you do not have space for one, use magnetic spice containers on the side of your fridge or fix a metal plate on the pantry wall (you can make your own magnetic spice containers by gluing magnetic strips to plastic spice containers)
- Stacking cans on a tiered shelf will make it easier to find what you need. Don’t buy expensive shelves made for this reason – buy $1 or $2 baskets, turn them upside down and create your own.
- Boxes of snacks for the lunchboxes can create a lot of clutter. Invest in cheap plastic office desk drawers and stack all the snacks in there. Kids can easily access these and at a glance mum knows what she needs to stock up on for the next grocery shop.
- An organised pantry will reduce stress levels and eliminate unnecessary money spent buying duplicate items.
- It is recommended to have a total pantry clear out once a year – eat your way to the last piece of dried spaghetti, then start again buying ONLY the things you’ll use.
- At the end of the day, all you have to do is be practical. Keep your eye one our Facebook page for more everyday storage and declutter ideas: