Pantry Organization Ideas + Tips
Any type of #organization makes my heart want to explode!
Organizing is definitely something I’ve always enjoyed doing. Ever since I was a little girl, I always enjoyed puzzles. In fact, I still have one of my favorite Barbie doll puzzles in my memories box from when I was a kid. My dad said that he used to set a timer to see how fast I could finish a puzzle. I believe that puzzles are a lot like organizing!
You have to dis-assemble + then re-assemble everything back together until all the pieces fit!
So, my love for #organizing began at a very early age!
When my husband and I first got married, I was honestly SO excited to have a space of our own to start organizing ALL the things in our first home together.
I love the challenge of planning + maximizing the use of space when I organize.
I also like a simple, clean + cohesive look.
Now I realize that this might sound CRAZY for someone who might not find the joy in organizing, but for me, I have always dreamed of having an organized pantry!! Like, no joke, I sometimes sit + stare at our pantry just because the organized space makes me happy (insert laughing emoji). Anyone who truly knows me, knows this.
I guess I would compare the feeling for me of an organized space to someone who does professional photography. If you’re a photographer, I’m sure that when you see that perfect quality photo that you took, with your camera, you’re probably filled with excitement and satisfaction.
Welp, that’s how I feel with organizing! It gives me all the heart eyes ♥
Ok, now that I’ve explained a little background on my love for organizing & my passion for it, let me share how I was able to do this #pantryorganization on a budget and how I can help you to do it too!
Let’s start with where I purchased the containers…
I got all of white containers at Dollar Tree. If you have never been to the #dollartree I would highly encourage you to go there and see all of the options they have for organizing bins! The best part is, everything is $1!!!!!
I searched high + low, and had stuff in my amazon cart for weeks debating which type of organizers I wanted to use. I couldn’t come to the fact that it was going to cost me wayyy over $120 for the bins that I wanted online. Once all was said and done, all of the materials in the picture above only cost me $42. Just like anything, purchasing the containers was an investment. It literally would cost me double, if not triple or quadruple that amount if I had spent that money buying ones from Target or even Amazon. So, shop around people! Don’t go with the first thing you see.
So when I saw these white bins at Dollar Tree in the photo above, I knew they were perfect and honestly, for $1, YOU CAN’T BEAT IT. The quality it great.
I also purchased the smaller, tan weave-style bins at Dollar Tree.
For the 2 larger weave baskets, I bought those at Marshalls for $5.99. Marshalls is a great place for organizing baskets, too! I love the natural look of them. Prior to being used in my pantry, these were actually being used in my living room under my coffee table. HAHA. So as much as I’d like to say that they essentially were “free”, they weren’t haha but they were still a good deal!
SO, shop your home people! You might have random bins/organizers/baskets laying around that would fit perfectly in your pantry!
Those weave baskets typically run anywhere from $12-$30, so be sure to check out your nearest #Marshalls, #HomeGoods or #TJMaxx for baskets like this to save you money. Those stores have so many great options!!
The last style of baskets in the picture with the little leaves on them, those are from Aldi. #Aldi is also a great option for organizers. The only thing about Aldi though, is you never know when they will have certain items in their store because they are always changing up their products.
Below I have BEFORE + AFTER pictures of my pantry. You can see what a difference the organizers make. It overall gives the pantry a more cohesive look and it really brightened it up too.
If you are considering organizing a space in your home, now is the time to do it!
Spring is the best time to get started on an organizing project because typically you’ll start to see a ton of organizing items out in stores.
I want to leave you with some of my top organizing tips + a step by step walk through to help you organize your pantry. Here’s how I did mine:
Step by step pantry organization
Start by taking a picture of what your pantry currently looks like. This will provide you a nice before + after picture to be satisfied with when you’re all done AND it will also help you remember where things were if you need to refer back to it while you’re in the middle of the project.
Next, measure the space. This includes the height, width and depth of the shelves and such. This will help you to know what you’re working with.
After that, figure out what items you use the most. Write it down on a piece of paper to help you visualize where you’d like to place those most-used items. Place certain items under the same category. EXAMPLE: snacks like granola bars, beef jerky sticks, applesauce pouches, etc. – can all be placed into one section labeled : SNACKS. Another example would be breakfast items such as : oatmeal packets, cereal, etc. These can be in the BREAKFAST category.
Then, figure out what color vibe you want. Neutral? Pops of color? Clear bins? I will say that having neutral colors will be easier on the eye and will help keep a cohesive look. Sometimes, color can be overwhelming. Neutral, earth tone colors will help the space to also feel larger.
Next, start browsing stores for the right size bins/containers. When picking containers/bins, look for ones with handles and sturdy, flat bottoms. Try to figure out what will fit your pantry the best + maximize as much space as possible. Take your time with this! Don’t just rush to the store or go online and purchase the first thing you see, really try your best to plan it out. I found that the large white round containers fit best in our pantry here, because they are flexible and the handles make it easy to pull in and out. The far right and left sides of our pantry were hard to pull square containers through, so since the round ones are flexible, they can be easily accessed since we went with a smaller size container that wasn’t bulky.
Once all of the the organizers are purchased + you have them in front of you, plan when to start it! I’d encourage you to give yourself a solid couple hours, so be intentional with when you can do this project. Maybe after your kids go to bed? Or when your husband heads off to work? Or maybe you want your spouse to help you. Plan out a specific time so you can be focused.
When you’re ready to begin, start by removing EVERY. SINGLE. THING. Yup, remove every last thing in that pantry.
Then, clean the space. Dust, wipe off shelves, sweep the floor & mop. You want to start with a clean slate, literally. Once everything is all cleaned, wipe out your organizing bins, take off labels, and clean those too if needed.
Once things are cleaned, sort through everything. Make piles of items you want to keep, trash, and donate. Then as you work through the items you are keeping, Begin sorting into piles by different categories. Examples: Breakfast, Coffee/Tea, Canned Items, Party Supplies, Paper Products, Holiday Supplies, Chips, Snacks, etc)
Last, get at it! Now that you’ve planned + purchased + prepped, the hardest parts are all over. The fun part is now getting to place everything categorically back in to the space.
- Get rid of items that you either no longer use or that are expired (have separate piles for KEEP, DONATE, and TRASH. As you work through all of your stuff, separate things into their appropriate piles
- Once things are sorted through, try to get an idea of where certain containers will fit best by placing the them on the shelves and doing a trial and error type system
- Place the least used items on the top or bottom shelves, since these won’t be accessed as often. If there are heavy items, be weary of placing them up high for safety reasons.
- Place most used items at eye-level so they are easy to access frequently. Also, if you have small children, maybe consider placing their items like bowls, cups, plates, etc at their level to help encourage independence.
- Once you have everything organized, try it out for a few days. If things aren’t working, simply move them around.
- One of the best ways to maximize space is to discard the cardboard that the food items come in. For example: when I purchase a package of our granola bars, I remove the cardboard + place all the individual bars into the bin. You can also do this with cereal, baking items, crackers, baby food, etc.
One of the last and most important steps is to LABEL it all 🙂 Labeling will help everyone in the family to know where things are! Labeling is especially good when you have things that are at a high reach + maybe you’re not sure what is in there, this allows you to just simply read the label so you don’t have to guess! It makes it so easy. You don’t need to have any kind of fancy label maker. Try going on Word and typing your own labels. Or even try handwriting them. This will give it a personal touch. You could even have your children help you make labels so they feel included and maybe it will inspire them, too! 🙂
I hope you found this step by step process helpful! And I hope it inspires you to organize YOUR pantry.
I love to organize for so many reasons.
One of those being that it makes me feel peaceful.
When we live in an organized space, it helps us feel more calm + at ease. I truly believe that living + working in an organized space with less clutter helps us to be healthier in many different areas.
Clutter causes us to feel anxious. De-cluttering relieves stress + anxiety.
Living in an organized space can also help us to make better eating choices, and it can help keep us inspired, encouraged, and motivated to keep things clean.
It will even help us be more productive. When you organize one space of your house and realize how good it makes you feel, it is truly like a domino effect.. You then start to think about all of the other areas in your home that you can make organized to help your household run a little bit smoother.
All of these together are great habits to develop as they will not only help us feel better + function better, but you’ll begin to see that this will spread into other areas of your life.
I could honestly keep going on and on about how much organization inspires me and how much I love it, but I will stop there and make another post in the future to extend on the specific benefits of it all.
If you’ve read this far in my post, thank you! Being your most candid self starts with being YOU, so don’t ever forget that! 🙂
Love to you all + happy spring cleaning & organizing!!!