Week 6 of the Organize Now! Challenge is to organize your pantry.
The idea of “keeping your pantry organized and stocked will make meal preparation that much easier” (page 118), sure makes plenty of sense.
Jen starts off the week’s goals by providing a vision of what you will want for your pantry, “Your end goal for your pantry should be to make sure you can see everything in it.” (page 118). Keeping this end goal in mind as I went through my pantry, helped me to make decisions in the organization of my pantry.
My pantry is built in to my 13ft by 8ft galley style kitchen. It’s the size of a small coat closet. The bottom half of my pantry is already spoken for, since the builder thought this was a great place to put the low boy water heater. This leaves space above for three wire shelves of 35” wide by 16” deep. We could add an extra wire shelf at the top, since the ceilings are so tall, but we haven’t really had a need for more shelves.
Here are some of Jennifer’s goals:
- Toss all expired and unwanted items
- If you have multiple containers of the same product, combine them
- Gather loose packets of food and put them in a basket or storage container
- Group items by zones (baking, snacks, lunch items, and weeknight meal ingredients)
- Organize your pantry from most-used items to least-used items
- Make most use of your vertical space
- Use an over-the-door organizer if you have the space
- Set up a checklist for pantry staples and take that list with you shopping when you run out of items
- Stock up on items when they are on sale
- Use step shelves if you have the space
- Store bulk items on the highest shelf
One of Jen’s tips/goals was to use an over-the-door organizer. I bought the ClosetMaid 26 in. 4-Tier Storage Rack from Home Depot for $20 and installed it on the inside door of the pantry for some of my food, spices and cooking supplies. I use to have most of these items in a cupboard near my stove/oven, but I couldn’t always see everything so, I decided this was a better option, especially for the smaller items.
I store taller/larger items in the cupboard near my stove/oven area. I am able to identify them better, since they are larger in size and they don’t “get lost” in the cupboard. I also store some of my other baking items in the OXO food storage containers that I love. You can buy them from Home Goods, Marshall’s, TJ Maxx and Bed Bath and Beyond.
My posts from Week 2 Challenge – Organize Your Kitchen Cupboards and Week 4 Challenge – Organize Your Routines helped in this weeks challenge. I wanted to plan the organization of the pantry according to how we ran our day to day lives. Our breakfasts and lunches for our work week are basically the same, which includes healthy and simple elements. We have granola, egg whites, bananas, yogurt and coffee for breakfast. My sweetie makes a lentil-vegetable soup for me twice a month. We freeze half of it and then we eat the rest of it during the week. Since, our breakfasts and lunches are very simple, we do not need too much space to store the items that we consume on a daily basis. We like for our menu to be substantiated with fresh, organic fruits and veggies. We try to keep processed foods to a minimum. I guess this is why only three wire shelves serve us well.
Two more of Jen’s tips that I will implement are setting up a checklist for pantry staples and take that list when I go shopping when I’ve run out of items and also stock up on items when they are on sale.
I enjoyed this week’s challenge which has helped me to get my home more organized so that my time can be spent on other important factors of my life.
***Please also check out the amazing women who are also participating in the 12 Week Organize Now! Challenge: Jennifer @ Mother Thyme, Bonnie @ House of Grace, Pamela @ the dayton time and Michelle @ Eamich ***