Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My Organized Pantry

Before we bought this house this past May, I never had a real pantry that I had room to organize the way I wanted to. I always tell people that the pantry is what sold me the house. While that's mostly a joke, it definitely has some truth to it! This pantry is very large, about 6 feet x 9 feet. So far, there is only shelving on 2 of the walls, but I could easily put up shelving on the other wall if I needed/wanted to.

It's taken me a few weeks to figure out the best way to organize it. I just re-did it again, for the second time since moving in, last week. I'm happier with it this way than I was before, but I'm still not sure it's *quite* right. Even so, I thought I'd share my method so far.

Here's the view of the whole pantry from the laundry room

To your right when you first walk in the pantry there is a little nook area. I decided that was the perfect spot for the trash can, and then I had my husband install a utility bar where I keep my ironing board, broom and our aprons. I also store my vacuum and mop right there. The steam cleaner isn't usually there (it's normally in the garage), but I had to use it the other day and need to use it again, so it's staying for now.

The top shelf on the back wall is where I keep all the non-food items -- toilet paper, paper plates, napkins, etc. I put them on the top because they're not things I need every day. Plus, I'm short, and I didn't those types of things taking up space on the shelves I could reach. The next shelf down is for all my baking supplies. The plastic tubs with yellow lids we just got at Sam's Club last week, and I'm in love. They're all labeled -- the first one is all-purpose flour, then bread flour, then granulated sugar, then brown sugar. You can see another large one on the bottom right of the picture. That one will be filled with pancake mix (so all I have to do is mix the wet ingredients when we want pancakes -- huge time saver!) once I get a chance to fill the darn thing. The next shelf down is for all the cereals and bread. I debated putting it up higher so it was out of the kids' way, but then I realized I want them to learn to be a little self-sufficient (i.e. be able to pour their own cereal in the morning so I can sleep in!). The bottom shelf is for all the heavier bulk items, like large bags of flour, potatoes, onions, etc. I originally had those items on the top shelf, but it was kind of a pain (literally!) trying to get a heavy bag of flour down, so I decided the bottom shelf would be best.

Moving on to the right. The top on this side we have reserved for all the snack foods -- soda, granola bars, Ritz, etc. I even have to keep the apples up there, otherwise my kids will eat them all in one sitting. The next shelf is for pastas and rice. That tall container is labeled for spaghetti noodles, the one next to it is for egg noodles, then the container to the far right is for jasmine rice. On that container, I also taped the directions for cooking the rice right below the label. The next shelf down is for all my canned products -- fruits, then beans, then soups, then veggies, tomato products, then ethnic stuff (like refried beans, diced green chilies, coconut milk, etc).

This is just a continuation of that same shelf. At the top on the right is where I keep the litter box scooper (obviously that's not something I want the kids to play with!) and the bulk bag of cat food. Next to the rice on the second shelf is where I keep all the oils and vinegars. Then on the next shelf there's the continuation of the cans. The very bottom is for the kitty litter. The container you can barely see on the bottom right is where I store cat food (it's a pour container I can use to refill their feeder so I don't have to open the huge bag all the time).

So that's that! Did I bore you to death? ;) I think the fact that I'm excited to show off my pantry proves that I'm an organizing freak-of-nature! lol.

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Anissa said...

you and I have a lot in common and would probably get along great! :) This is a pantry after my own heart. I especially love those containers you found at Sam's Club. You've inspired me to organize my pantry (even though I just did it this past weekend). Thanks for all the pics!

Hillary said...

Make sure you post pictures when you're done!! :)

D said...

I am so jealous of your pantry! Wish I had one! If we ever buy a house(we live in the superexpensive California market) that is on my priority list.