How We Organize Our Pantry
This January has been a great reset, our first as a family of five. I’m using every spare minute I can to get our household in order, starting with the pantry! I worked with a professional organizer when we moved in three years ago to set up our pantry organization, but we’ve had two additional children since then so it was overdue for an update. Sharing some of our favorite tips and pieces to keep things in order and my thinking on the best way to separate the spaces if you’re also taking on this project!
1. Keep Essentials at Eye Level
I suppose all pantries are unique. We had ours built in and designed by our architect before we moved into our house in 2019. There are probably pros and cons to doing it this way – it looks gorgeous and technically the space is maximized, but it’s probably better suited as a china closet (one day I’ll get a dedicated space for that!). In the meantime, what happens when you also want your beautifully designed space to look good with the door open and full of food. I worked through this challenge by employing lots of baskets immediately when we moved in and still have the same layout, but have made it much more functional by keeping essentials at eye level. For us, that means kids snacks are down on their level, behind the cabinet doors, so they can help themselves. I also have things we grab for daily like our bread basket, cereal and snacks on the countertop surface.
2. Baskets Are Aesthetic But Know What’s In Them
As I mentioned, the pantry has wide open shelving, which is lovely, but is also a lot to look at. I adore these baskets, as they are visually pleasing and store a lot. We use basket tags and labels, and have categories like Breakfast, Wellness, Snacks, Baking, Backstock, Kids, Rice, Peanut Butter (yes, in our house this has its own category as it’s one of my favorite foods), Nuts, Chips and Sweets. We also sub organize – cookies and some candy, for example, get removed from the package and put into smaller containers. It helps maximize our space!
3. Categories are Your Friend
Obviously, when planning, you have to decide what your family eats and how much food you’ve got in your pantry. Organizing into how you currently live and making small tweaks every 6 months or so (in our case, for new baby stages) has worked well! Don’t forget to use these check-ins to edit (get rid of any expired food and make mental note not to buy too much of that thing again!).
4. Want to Add Charm? Cake Plates Are the Answer
Our top shelf is clearly too tall to reach daily (even with this step stool, which lives in our pantry and stays open all the time). The solve we came up with, which I love, is housing my many (many!) cake plates in the pantry. They actually take up two shelves along with a couple open baskets for backstock of other party supplies, (in this case popcorn for Elle’s upcoming birthday).
5. Visual Relief is Key
So that we didn’t just have a million baskets, we found solutions for some of our pantry items that allow for a little bit of visual relief. We essentially merchandised some of the space like you would a retail store or book case. Our spices are on turn tables and we use glass jars to store our dry goods like flour and sugar. I also ADORE our labels. I had our spice jars hand written by Clea of The Home Edit circa 2017, when she was still hand writing everything. Luckily for all of us her handwriting was turned into labels for The Container Store, so we have every category you could think of in the same writing. It’s the little things that make it pretty while working through pantry organization!
I hope you found this helpful – here’s a peek inside, if you care to see and good luck as you organize your own space.