How to Organize Your Food Pantry

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Last week I talked about organizing your fridge and freezer. This week it is all about the pantry. Keeping it organized will make your life in the kitchen a lot easier. Here are some ways to get and keep it organized.

  • Take everything out of your pantry and set it down on your counter or kitchen table.
  • Look through your stock. Assess every item and discard anything that is stale, spoiled or expired.
  • Sort items into like groups.
  • Based on the groups of items left, assess your pantry storage area and decide if the space works or you need to invest in storage items such as helper shelves(which will double the  horizontal space in the pantry), baskets, containers etc.
  • When putting items back arrange them not only by putting the like items together but also by size. If  taller items are in the back you can still see the smaller stuff upfront
  • Use tight fitting containers to hold dry items such as pasta, flour, coffee etc. Square containers take up less space than round ones because the fit more efficiently on shelves and are easier to stack.
  • Label all the containers. (powdered sugar looks a lot like flour)
  • Put all your baking stuff in one basket. Easy to pull out and use when needed.
  • Make sure to rotate your stock when you buy new items.
  • Instead of having a big box for example in your pantry taking up space with only one sleeve of crackers. Put them in a Ziploc type bag instead.
  • Make an inventory list and hang it on the inside of the pantry door, so you always know what you have.
  • Have a snack basket in your pantry that is easily accessible to the kids (of course filled with healthy mom approved snacks.)
  • After your pantry is organized the key to keeping it that way is being consistent about straightening  it  and putting  things back where they belong

Just like so many things when it come to organization an orderly pantry will save you time and money, as well as aggravation because you will be able to locate what you need when you need it.

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Jennifer Ascher

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