Organizing the Pantry

Organizing the pantry is a big job in these pages, I will guide you through how to do this. I’ll break it down and have some interesting videos to show you how I have done it.

Step by step approach to organizing the pantry

On this page and in the video example, I'm in one of my friends’ houses and we are going to look at their pantry. Throughout I follow the following steps.

  1. Taking everything out of the pantry.
  2. Think about what we want and need from this place.
  3. Put things back in an organized fashion.

Take everything out of the pantry 

Most people’s pantries are full of stuff we cannot remember placing there so our first step when organizing the pantry is taking everything out. When taking the items out we look at similar categories (“like items”). At this stage, I've taken a few containers with me which I just had lying around and so we'll see what we can utilize at this stage as it will help us group like items together and get an idea of how the pantry will flow. The containers I have at this stage are most likely not the final ones but can give us some idea of what we'll end up with. Another important thing to do at this stage is to declutter as you go.

You will come across many items you can throw out as you realize you don’t need or use them.

Journal Summary of our first organizing the pantry session.

Now we are at the end of our first session, the good news is we are making lots of progress! The bad news is we will definitely have to come back and finish the job. And that's really the reality of organizing. I told myself, “I've got an hour and it's the maximum amount of time I'm willing to spend on it now.” So this is what I've been able to do in an hour; taking everything out of the pantry, binning lots of items (once I had permission from my friend) and putting what we are keeping back in the temporary containers. 

It's good to sometimes actually have a break, to check whether the system you're implementing is actually working and to take the time to get more containers. At the moment I've just used the containers that I had which are blue. Normally, I recommend see-through containers because you can quickly see what’s in there. But these containers will work at the moment. In this example I've got a few different sizes, normally, I’d recommend sticking to standard sizes but in this case, they work because it's this corner pantry. In this case, we might need different sizes because of our different categories, we have a big category for pasta. We’ve got spreads, honey, peanut butter, and things like that. Crackers and snacks is a big category. So you see, everything’s grouped together and it is easy to see where items “live”, which is our main aim.

We still have to do some more organizing the pantry at the bottom and the top which we’re going to come back for. And also need a few more storage containers, containers that will be more permanent. 

Another thing that we will do after our first organizing session is basically just double checking the things. Are the places and groupings I have set up working? Do you still want to keep the items you have selected now or as you are seeing what you have, should you throw some more items away? This is basically a multiple stage approach. And that's the reality of organizing. As you can see in the video, however, I am happy we’re making great progress. 

We will continue to work on organizing the pantry in another video on “How to organize your

pantry.” – Part 2 Stay tuned!

You can watch the video of this first organizing the pantry session here

The next page will show you how we continued.

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