Organization,  Room by Room

Simple Ideas To Perfectly Organize Your Pantry

When your kids can’t find the cookies you just bought, you’re out of a favorite cereal and you find three boxes of the fettuccine noodles but no spaghetti?  It’s time to organize your pantry.

Perfect your Pantry

The pantry is one of the most important areas of a kitchen yet its often overlooked when it comes to organization.  When you take the time to organize your pantry you improve your effeciency, family members can find things and help you store items and you may be inspired to cook more.

Organizing the pantry is fairly easy to do once you have a plan.  Here are the steps I took to bring order to my pantry.

Step 1 – Clear out, Clean and Purge

It’s a neccessary evil but you have to see what you have, purge old items and clean those shelves to get a fresh, organized start.  It can be overwhelming to have your countertops full of pantry items but that’s how it starts.

You can start with smaller steps by clearing one section at a time over a couple of days as I did.  It’s less to do at one time and works well when you have a large pantry.

Have a degreaser on hand because those shelves will need it if it’s been awhile.

White pantry - Country LivingThe pantry can also serve as a message center.  All you need is a little chalk paint.  Country Living magazine

Step 2 – Create Zones By Category or By Meal

My pantry refresh started because I wanted my sons to help put items away and to find what they need.  So organizing by instinct or how we use products helps people find “instinctively”.   I grouped like items by category in different zones – drinks, snacks, baked goods, etc.  It helps me know when I’m low on supplies and my kids no longer have an excuse when putting groceries away.

pantry-cabinets labeledOrganizing by food category or food use instinctively helps you find items you need.

Here are some guidelines to consider following:

  • Place liquid containers such as cooking oils and gallon water containers near the floor.
  • Place small appliances such as waffle iron, food processor, etc together.
  • Place seasonal items & non-essentials on high shelves out of the way.
  • Place canned goods at eye level.

Atlantic-Three-Shelf-Canracksing can racks bring order and allows easy, clear access.


Step 3 – Use the inside of the door

The pantry door can become a unique storage solution by adding a stock or customized door fixture.  Every inch  of space can be precious, even the pantry door.  See what a little effort and creativity can do.

Hang Pot tops on doorWhat a great way to store pot tops – I love this ideas!

Pantry door storageThis magazine rack hung on the door makes food storage supplies very handy.

Organize Pantry doorGet creative – This file hanger also makes great storage.

Step 4 – Use Clear and Airtight Containers

When you see, you will use.  My dry staples such as pasta, cereals and rice were an absolute mess until I invested in glass and plastic containers. What a difference it has made.   Also, there’s a great benefit to storing flour, sugar, whole grains, beans pasta, rice, cereals and dried fruits in airtight containers because they stay fresh longer.   Now I alway know what I have on hand and what I need to replace when I go shopping.

Pasta storageI actually buy less since I started storing my pasta and other dry goods in glass and plastic containers.

If you don’t want to invest in buying  glass continers here are some other options:

  • Clean and reuse spaghetti jars or use mason jars – great for storing rice and dry beans.
  • Use resealable plastic storage bags.  They are excellent for keeping opened bags of flour and sugar fresh.
  • Use plastic food storage containers to store dried fruits, nuts and spices.
  • Square containers are also a great choice because they stack well and use less space.

Mason jar storageMason jars make great inexpensive storage.  I like these labeled with chalk paint.

Step 5 – Increase your pantry’s effeciency with a few upgrades.


Pull out pantry shelvesPull out shelves takes ease of access to a new level.

Verticl pantry shelvesVertical shelves are great for baking pans, serving dishes and other cooking tools

under shelf basketThis rack slides on the shelf to add extra storage space.

Garbage bags storageCylinder tubes are great for storing plastic grocery bags and garbage bags

Taking the time to organize your pantry is a worthwhile investment because it will pay off in many ways.

I hope you have found an idea or two to improve your pantry space.

Until next time …

Splendid Habitat signature


  • Jamala

    I love these ideas.. I was just getting ready to look for inspirations to clear out my cabinets. Storing the plastic containers and lids is totally baffling for me. No matter how many times I organize it.. they’re back to being unorganized. Ugggghhhh…. so.. these ideas will help me out quite a bit. Thanks for posting.

    • Elle

      Thanks so much and hang in there. I know you can organize your pantry and make it stick. Maintaining is the hardest part but it’s in you girl.

      Good Luck!