The kitchen is the heart of a home and is probably the most used room in the house. That’s why people spend so much money on remodeling their kitchens, and on expensive details like alder or mahogany cabinets. But what goes on behind closed pantry doors? Once you’ve invested in a gorgeous kitchen, is the pantry easy to keep organized?
No one wants a beautiful kitchen that hides a cluttered, disorganized mess in the pantry. A neat pantry makes cooking and entertaining easier by keeping what you need on hand and clearly visible. It helps keep the kitchen clean and prevents you from misplacing cooking tools and vital ingredients. It makes a real impression. A host or hostess who opens a pantry door to reveal items arranged with care is one you know will serve one impressive meal. Plus, it’s beautiful to look at. Let’s look at ways to organize your pantry so well that even your friends will want to store their cookies there.
Six Tips to Achieve the Most Organized Pantry
Did you know the pantry began as a cool, dark place to store perishable foods? The word pantry is thought to be derived from the French word “pan,” meaning bread. These days pantries are used to store so much more.
Tip #1: Divide Your Pantry Into Zones
Your first step to an organized pantry is to assess what foods and cooking tools you have and which ones you use the most frequently. Then divide the items into zones. This will make meal preparation faster and prevent an ordered pantry from becoming disheveled by a frantic search for a lost item. Be sure to label zones so everyone in the household understands your new system. Possible zones include:
Br eakfast: Keep foods such as cold cereal, breakfast bars, coffee, and hot cereals in one place to make the morning rush faster.
Quick and easy dinners: Place bins in an accessible, middle area stocked with the dry foods you will need to prepare weekday meals, and organize each bin by meal. For example, a bin stocked with salad dressing, croutons, walnuts, and cranberries is set to top a salad. Simply remove the bin from the pantry.
A snack-tacular kid zone: The first thing kids do after school is look for a snack. Give your kids a zone of their own on a low shelf stocked with a snack bin. Kids can grab their own healthy snacks like trail mix, dried fruit, or veggie chips without digging through the entire pantry.
A baking bin: Everyone knows baking is a science. Have all the items you need, including essentials like baking powder or yeast, all in one area. Check and restock your baking bin regularly so you don’t get stuck mixing a bowl of batter that’s missing one vital ingredient.
Tip #2: Use The Entire Space
Once you have the main areas of your pantry organized into zones, look for unused space. This may include the area between the end of your shelf and the door frame or the floor space under the bottom shelf. Hang hooks in the first scenario, and put bins on the floor in the second. Once you see empty space be creative with how you put it to use. The possibilities are endless.
Tip #3: Get Creative: Organize Your Pantry With Household Items
Household items can be repurposed to organize your pantry. And just because a container was invented to hold a specific item doesn’t mean you can’t give it a new life and a different job in your pantry. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Hang a shower rack: It may sound silly, but a rack built to hang from the shower head can hold round slippery items, such as apples or potatoes, just as well as it can hold toothbrushes and soap.
Use a pegboard: Home organizers love pegboards because they can be cut to fit tricky spaces and make everything easier to reach. Use one to hang pots and pans, coffee cups, or any other items that look clunky on shelves.
Try a shoe organizer: Another surprising trick is to hang a shoe organizer on the inside of the pantry door. It can be organized to hold nearly any smaller item: lunch-sized bags of chips or tiny jars of food coloring.
Stack plastic containers: It doesn’t matter what a plastic container was designed to hold. They can easily stack to use vertical pantry space. It’s one way to pile up items without them tumbling out whenever the pantry door is opened.
Tip #4: Use Clear Plastic or Glass Bins for Visibility
When dividing a pantry into zones, clear plastic enables you to see what’s in each bin immediately. And if you are transferring dry food from its packaging to storage bins or jars, keeping it clear helps make finding what you need faster, too.
The other great thing about clear bins and jars is they allow you to see at a glance what items you are running low on. Be sure to take a peek into your pantry before heading off to the store.
Tip #5: Label Everything
Once you have your pantry in order, be sure to label everything. This is especially important if you are transferring food from its packaging to a jar, such as cereal or flour. In a pinch, you’ll want important distinctions labeled, such as self-rising versus all-purpose flour. Make labels out of:
Or, make labels on your computer and print them out.
Tip #6: Install Quality Hardware With a Professional Pantry Redesign
Maybe your existing pantry just doesn’t have the space, shelving, or other hardware needed to organize it just the way you want. In this case, you can have professional designers reimagine your space laid out in a design that matches your lifestyle. Not only does it make your kitchen better-suited for your family, but it adds resale value to your home. Pantry redesigns are divided into two categories: walk-in or reach-in pantries.
You can personalize your walk-in pantry with features such as:
Sturdy customized shelving for storing kitchen appliances, serving dishes, and China
Floor-to-ceiling lazy Susans to make the most of valuable corner space
Sliding chrome baskets to store fresh fruit, vegetables, or packaged snacks
Slide-out wine and bottle racks to keep your favorite beverages within reach
Soft-close drawers for storing table linens and towels
Integrated chrome hooks to hang aprons and potholders
Transform your reach-in pantry with details that include:
Sturdy and adjustable customized shelving to store anything from food to dinnerware
Chrome slide-out baskets for storing fresh fruit and vegetables, packaged snacks, and more
Drawers with soft-closing hinges for serving ware, kitchen gadgets, or linens
Heavy-gauge chrome pull-out storage that adjusts to accommodate boxes, jars, and cans
All of these high-end features can be added by our team of professionals. With the help of a skilled designer, they can be incorporated into a pantry tailored to fit the way you live.
Design Your Most Organized Kitchen Today
Go ahead and give some of these tips a try and find out which ones work best for you. Organizing a pantry doesn’t happen overnight, and organizing it in sections little by little may make things easier for you.
Of course, you can update your pantry yourself. But if you need any help or are interested in having a pantry designed especially for you, contact us here at Closet America. Enlist the help of our team of expert designers and carpenters to do the work for you. We can visit you at your home and give you a free consultation. There’s no commitment to buy anything and together we can design the pantry of your dreams.
Image 4 by Unsplash user Steve Johnson