Here’s a professional organizer secret: Organizing your pantry doesn’t have to cost you an arm and leg. I’ve seen those images on Pinterest and Instagram of the perfect pantries with all of the food decanted into matching glass containers and not a store label in sight. Those pantries look beautiful! But they are very expensive to set up and difficult to maintain (imagine after every grocery trip you spend an extra 30-60 minutes decanting everything into jars and trying to get it to all fit back on the shelf). So here is an easier, more cost-effective version of a pantry that I recently created for a client:
We placed the pots and pans in the pantry because the client had the space and she wanted better accessibility. The client wanted to be able to quickly find the right lid for each pot and not bend down, rummaging around in a deep, low cabinet.
Next we corralled bags of like items into large plastic tubs (Sterilite, $4 @ Fred Meyers). One bin is pasta, one bin is desserts, and one bin is baking supplies. This eliminated the need to buy expensive canisters for bulk food items because we could simply keep them in their original packaging tucked away in a bin. Not only are they easy to find, but any little spills are contained in the bin.
After that, we used her existing leftover containers to store the flour, sugar, brown sugar and other baking essentials. And we repurposed a small cookie sheet to hold drippy, sticky bottles like caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, coconut oil and marshmallow fluff. If the tray gets sticky enough, my client can simply run it through the dishwasher.
Finally, we placed her oversize appliances on the bottom shelf. For safety reasons, we chose to place these heavy items down low so she wouldn’t have to lift them over her head to use them. It is always a good idea to place heavy items on bottom shelves in a closet or pantry. We used a plastic shoe box (Sterilite, $1 @ Fred Meyer) to hold all of the accessories for the appliances.
Voila! The client has a super easy-to-use pantry that has room for growth (the pantry contains more food around the holidays) and is lovely to look at. She and I are just so pleased with how it turned out!
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