Organizing Your Pantry

Cathy Mendler

It’s mid-November already–time for hats, scarves, warm woolly mittens and boots–as snowflakes start to appear!

Preparing food and baking are on many people’s to-do lists over the next six weeks. The pantry is one of the most well-used areas of your kitchen, so it’s important to keep it organized.

 

ORGANIZING YOUR PANTRY

Dictionary.com defines a pantry as “a room or closet in which food, groceries, and other provisions, or silverware, dishes, etc., are kept” or “a room between the kitchen and dining room in which food is arranged for serving, glassware and dishes are stored, etc.” Perhaps you’re fortunate enough to have a walk-in pantry. Many of us likely have designated several cupboards to store pantry items.

Since many food items have best before dates, it’s helpful to follow the First In, First Out¬†principle. Use the oldest items first. When unpacking groceries, place new items behind the older items. This seems like it should be common sense, but I’m surprised how many clients don’t do this. When cleaning out and organizing a kitchen, a great deal of food often gets thrown out. Food waste is at an all-time high.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Group like items together–tea/coffee, baking supplies, spices, etc.
  • Use containers to hold small items.
  • Cereal, rice, pasta, flour, sugar and bulk items can be stored in see-through containers (available at dollar stores).
  • Can dispensers, stepped shelf organizers and Lazy Susans can be used.
  • Keep frequently used items on shelves that allow easy access.
  • Use open containers for children’s snacks.
  • Label containers so everyone can find items easily.
  • Put a date on items and/or containers.
  • Can you store appliances in your pantry to keep your countertop clear?
  • Matching baskets or containers will make your pantry look tidier.
  • Purge your pantry on a regular basis–just before green bin or garbage day.

Remember РBuying items in large quantities is only practical if you have the space to store them. 

If you reorganize your entire pantry, you may need to make a few adjustments. There is no one right solution!

Get started and turn over another leaf!

Until next month,

Cathy Mendler