We all have that one spot in our house that’s a total disaster. For some of us, it’s the bedroom closet—for others, it might be the garage. But for many of us, it’s the pantry. The dreaded pantry is often a disorganized mess of boxes, cans, and bags with no rhyme or reason for what stays and what goes. But don’t despair! We can help you get your pantry back under control with these simple steps. Starting with your pantry is a great way to help you get more organized and set yourself up for healthy habits this year.
Start With a Clean Slate. The first step to organizing your pantry is to start with a blank slate. Take everything out of the pantry and give it a good cleaning. Remove anything that isn’t needed (or wanted). Go through all your items one by one and toss them out if they’re expired or donate them if they’re still good. Wipe down all shelves, drawers, walls, and doors.
Once everything is clean and dry, start sorting items and categorize them by type or use to keep things organized and help with meal planning later on. For example, create one section for canned goods, another for grains, one for snacks, etc. You should invest in clear containers and bins for dry goods and snacks. You can also use storage containers (like baskets or bins) for easy grab-and-go access when cooking meals later on. For example, categorize all baking supplies in one area and store them in clear, air-tight containers. You can also clear out a lot of clutter but storing other bagged items like beans, lentils, flax seeds, oats, etc., in clear glass or plastic containers; you can add a scoop for fun too. This will make it easier to find what you need quickly when cooking or baking. This also helps you easily identify when something needs replacing in your grocery list.
If you have kids, you can use the bins to store their snacks and a bin for adult snacks. This might seem unnecessary, but labeling can be invaluable when organizing your space. You can use chalkboard labels on storage containers or baskets or just print out labels on regular paper and tape them onto shelves and drawers. Labeling will keep your pantry neat over time by ensuring everyone puts things back where they belong.
Lastly, store items strategically based on how often they get used. The most frequently used items should go at eye level, so they're easy to access. In contrast, less-used items such as baking supplies or holiday decorations can be stored on higher shelves or in deeper corners of the pantry, where they will only take up valuable space near more regularly used items. Additionally, storing heavier items (such as canned goods) on lower shelves reduces the risk of accidents from trying to reach for something out of reach.
A tidy pantry isn't just nice-looking; it's practical too! Taking some time to organize your pantry can save you time and energy in the long run. To keep your pantry looking ship shape for years to come, just remember: clear out clutter; group like items together; create designated spaces; label appropriately; and voila—an organized oasis awaits!