Getting Your Pantry Organized

Nov 14 07:54 2011 Heidi DeCoux Print This Article

A functional pantry is key to having a functional kitchen.  When your pantry is a glowing example of home organization you will spend less money on wasted food and less time on putting together grocery lists trying to figure out what you already own!

Is your home pantry everything it could be?  A well put together pantry can be the center of everything that happens in your kitchen.  Home organization in your pantry will save you time and money.


A successful pantry is made up of two components: an organized pantry and a good system for stocking it.  You need to develop good habits when it comes to your pantry and home organization.  If your stocking and organization habits are bad now,Guest Posting a little guidance can change that!


I Don’t Have a Pantry….


Are you thinking an organized pantry would be great, in fact A PANTRY would be great!  Just because you have a small kitchen, or your kitchen doesn’t contain a traditional pantry closet, does not mean you can’t have this important storage space! 


Your pantry doesn’t have to be in your kitchen.  Any space that is dry, and temperature regulated can serve the purpose.  Small space demand creativity.  Find unused space in a linen or coat closet.


Get it Organized…


1.   Empty out your pantry space.  Clean off the shelves, line them if needed.  Discard food that has expired.  Take a good look at what you have.  If you have been compulsively buying one item, but didn’t notice your stock growing in a messy space, you may have far more than you could ever use before it expires.  If this is the case consider donating these extras to a food pantry. 


2.   Sort your food into categories.  Keeping like items together will help you find things faster, and help you visually inventory what you have.  Examples of categories are breakfast cereals, soup, baking goods. 




3.   Use a layout that makes sense.  After school snacks for the kids should go on lower shelves, where they can reach them.  Baking supplies you only use three times a year should be in a harder to reach place. 


4.   Make the space you have count.  Get the most in by using your vertical space.  If your shelves are adjustable, great!  If they aren’t look for products like can risers to use all of the height in your closet.  10-12 inches of dead air in between your shelves is just plain wasted space.  Measure your shelves and invest in a couple great baskets for items that tend to flop around and create messes on traditional shelves.  The big offenders?  Bags of chips and other snacks, bags of pasta, beans, and flavor packets. 


What Should I Be Keeping?


Now that you have cleaned out your space and organized what you already have, how do you know what else you need?  Look at what you buy regularly.  If up until now you had no home organization in your pantry don’t start out with the goal of a pantry stocked for a year of meals.  Take it slow, changing habits doesn’t have to be hard if you do it right. 


Start with a back-up of each of the non-perishable items you buy regularly at the grocery store.  If you were going to buy one can of beans, buy two.  If you are starting from scratch give yourself time, a little planning and coupon use can go a long way to stock your pantry.  When you pull something out of your pantry add it to your grocery list, you’ll need to replace your stock.


I Want an Organized Pantry NOW…


If you had been in the habit of shopping without a list, or jamming things in to your cabinets with no plan, an organized pantry can seem like a lot of work.  And if you don’t put some effort into changing habits you may not be successful at getting organized.  Here are some quick tips to help you get off on the right foot:


·        Change one thing at a time.  If you have just reorganized your entire closet and are adjusting to a new system there it might not be the time to build a new habit in the kitchen too.


·        Get everyone on board.  Getting everyone who uses the pantry to buy in will make changing habits in your storage much easier.  When everyone puts things where they belong you won’t have to spend time re-shelving what others have done.  It will lessen the chance of you burning out and giving up!



·        Give yourself time.  Like most home organization once we decide to make the change we want everything perfect right away!  Keep In mind changing habits takes about 30 days.  Stick with for a month and you will find it gets easier and easier to keep organized.


Use home organization to save yourself time.  You can put a stop to needless trips to the grocery store for supplies you already own, but simply can’t find.  It will save you money as well since you won’t be buying unnecessary duplicates.  Get started today and your holidays can be a less stressful time.




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Heidi DeCoux
Heidi DeCoux

Heidi DeCoux is a productivity, organization & profitability consultant and creator of The Fast-Filing Method home filing system teaching, in part, changing habits. To get a FREE Home Organization e-Solutions Kit, which features the audio class: The Fast & Easy Way to Get Organized and Stay Organized Forever, visit 

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