This post has been a long time in the making.
When mom moved out a few months ago one of the very first things I tackled was to get a handle on the distaster that was our pantry. It had been getting worse for months and once combined with several large coupon-driven shopping trips in a row I finally just got frustrated. It was ridiculous to me that the things we use the most often (like dog food and coffee) were stuck in some random deep, dark corner of the pantry instead of front and center where they should be. Instead, the easily accessible items were things we rarely used (olive tapenade anyone?).
One of the first things I always do when I’m organizing a space is attempt to put everything in similar containers. This way, things stack and fit better together. As we’re NO WHERE NEAR ready to renovate this part of the house (in fact, it’s probably last on our list) we kept this reorganization simple.
I purchased several sets of matching Rubbermaid Tupperware from Sam’s and got to work.
I started by removing everything from the pantry and grouping like items (canned foods with canned foods, rice and pasta, cooking oils, etc) and placing them on the bar. Then, I placed each item that was originally in a box or other container (think Bisquick, brown sugar, rice, etc) in a Tupperware and labeled it. Lastly, I put items back into the pantry based on frequency of use. The dog food, which we use twice a day every day without fail was placed front and center on the bottom shelf of the pantry. Easy access. Items like refill containers of mayonnaise were relegated to the dark corner recesses of the pantry (which makes sense when you think that we only need those items what? once a month maybe?). I realize that this may not look like a huge change picture wise but man oh man are we so happy with it! Yay for organization!
Note: I used these wonderful Erasable Food Storage Labels from The Container Store that we’ve had forever. You write on them with permanent marker (no smudging!), they’re dishwasher & freezer safe and they’re erasable! We’ve had them for years and we love ‘em!!!! Oh, and I love that you can order replacements of just the labels, or the marker, or the eraser. Gotta love The Container Store. I could easily spend an entire months paycheck in there.
BEFORE (‘front’ of pantry)
AFTER (‘front’ of pantry)
BEFORE (‘side’ of pantry aka deep dark recesses)
AFTER (‘side’ of pantry aka deep dark recesses)
A peek at our nicely labeled and stackable tupperware:
Do you have any secrets to pantry organization?
I’ve linked up to these great parties: