Do you enjoy organizing your pantry? If you’re like most people, it’s not your favorite way to spend an afternoon. It can be time-consuming and tedious, but there are some really good reasons to get it done. Stop putting it off, and you may find that finally getting it organized will save you time and money, prevent spoilage and pest invasions, and help improve your life in ways you never even expected.
- You probably already know that organizing your pantry can reduce waste. When you know exactly what’s in your pantry, you’ll know what you do and do not need to buy at the store. Eliminating duplication saves money, and it also reduces your risk of having to throw things away because they expired when you had too many of them in your pantry.
- Have you ever found unwanted visitors in your pantry? Weevils and other pests love to make homes in baking supplies and other pantry staples, and there are few things more disconcerting and annoying than opening your pantry to find an infestation of pantry moths. While you’re organizing, consider storing food in tight-sealing containers, to keep the creepy-crawlies at bay.
- When your pantry is well-organized, it seems to have more space. Clean out everything you don’t need, find creative ways to make storage more accessible, and you may find that you’ve cleared up enough space to store additional items in your pantry, like small appliances, serving platters, or little-used cookware.
- A well-organized pantry can help you make better food choices. Most of us have treats tucked away in our pantries, and that’s fine as long as they’re not a staple of our diet. Keeping these items in opaque containers can almost make you forget you have them, which makes it much easier to ignore their presence and eat healthier foods. What’s more, having your better food options readily available and visible in your pantry makes you more likely to choose to eat well.
- Home-cooked meals are often the best choice you can make, and a welcoming pantry makes cooking more appealing. On average, homemade meals have about 40 percent less fat, calories, and sodium than restaurant meals. When you can see your quinoa and easily access your vegetables, it’s easier to get in the mood to whip up something healthy and delicious.
Now that you know the benefits of getting your pantry whipped into shape, do you know how to take the next step? Depending on the size and current condition of your pantry, it could take you a few hours to tackle the chore. Not to worry! Follow a few simple steps and you’ll be done before you know it.
- When in doubt, throw it out. The first step to an organized pantry is getting rid of all the things that shouldn’t be in there. This includes expired foods, things that have gone bad, duplicates you won’t be able to use, holiday items that are no longer in season, and foods you just don’t want to eat. Throw away everything that’s no longer edible, but take the things that are still good somewhere they can be used: your local food bank will thank you!
- Once it’s cleared, get it clean. Take absolutely everything off the pantry shelves, then clean the pantry itself. Vacuum, wipe, scrub, and do whatever else it takes to get the honey off the shelves and the crumbs out of the corners. You only need to do this once or twice a year, but it will make your pantry a much more enjoyable space.
- Group like items for better organization. This allows you to see exactly what you have, avoid duplication, and weed out excess. Put all the canned goods together, then further categorize them, separating your green vegetables from the yellow ones and so on.
- Bins, baskets, and containers can help you stay organized. You can do something simple, like clear plastic containers for your grains and cereals, or you can go all out and buy racks for your cans and baskets with pretty labels to keep all your items properly grouped. Whatever system you decide to use, labeling is a great idea because it helps you to easily see what you’ve got and what you need.
- Maximize every bit of space available. Pantry shelves are just the beginning of what you can do with your space. Lazy-Susans, tiered can storage, and a rack on the back of the door are just a few of the ideas you can use to make your space more user–friendly. Don’t forget to look up! It’s easy to forget about the space at the top of your pantry, but if you find ways to work all the way up to the ceiling, you’ll have much more room at your disposal.
- For a truly organized space, consider redesigning your pantry. What’s the best solution when you’re trying to create an organized kitchen? A pantry that’s customized to meet your needs. The pantry of your dreams can become reality, with all the shelves, drawers, racks, and baskets your heart desires. Bringing in an expert is a great idea, because those who design storage space for a living can help you determine how best to make the most of the space you have, and whether you need to find a way to expand that space to get the most value from your kitchen.
In the Bay Area, Bay Home & Window is your go-to source for highly functional and elegant built-ins, whether you’re in need of a made-to-order pantry that’s easy to organize or a functional walk-in closet. Our expert designers will work with you, taking stock of your space and your lifestyle in order to create the perfect configuration to meet your needs. We can create the perfect system, customized to meet your needs, with an emphasis on function, organization, and elegance. Call (925) 264-6746 or contact us for a free in-home design consultation.