Do you dream of an organized pantry with all your essentials and favourites—the stuff of Pinterest dreams? Are you disappointed every time you go into your pantry because what you need is always so difficult to find? If this sounds like you, then you’re definitely in need of a pantry overhaul, and we can help you achieve the organization and cleanliness you’ve always longed for. Read on to discover some of our best tips to help you declutter, make space, and organize your pantry so that you can make cooking more efficient and stop wasting time trying to sort through a mess looking for ingredients. After all, less time sorting through your pantry every night means more time for you and your family!
Remove Unwanted Items
The first step to getting gloriously clean in your pantry is to remove all items from the shelf you are looking to organize. You can either do the cleaning shelf by shelf or all at once. This may depend on how much you actually have in your pantry, how big it is, and how much time you have. Decide beforehand and then start by moving all the items out; this will make it easier to take stock of what you have. You can put the items on your kitchen island or counter so you can see everything easily, and then decide whether you really need it or not. Get rid of food that has gone bad or stale and items that you no longer use or need. Once you’ve done this, the empty shelf will allow you to get into every nook and cranny and clean off any dust, crumbs, or dirt. Use a washcloth or rag with some cleaning solution or water to wipe your shelves clean before putting the items away.
Use Mason Jars for a Uniform Look
If you want an aesthetically pleasing and uniform look in your pantry, consider purchasing matching bins, containers, or mason jars to store items like cereal, spices, jams, and baking ingredients. This way, you will achieve an effortlessly organized look, and can see how much you have left of certain ingredients and spices while they’re in glass mason jars. Keep in mind that this step isn’t necessary, but rather a matter of personal preference. Some people prefer to keep their stored goods in the original packaging, and that works well also.
Label and Organize Items on Shelves
If you’re looking to go the extra mile and make finding things much easier, you can create labels for each individual item or for each shelf. Labels on spices are the most basic example of this, as they allow you to easily differentiate between various spices and also makes them look much neater on the shelf. Let your creativity flow: you can choose to do custom labels or use your own handwriting, for example. If you have a label maker on hand, this would be a great time to use it! Once you’ve labelled your items according to your preferences, you can start to organize them back onto the shelves.
Store Like with Like
When putting your items back onto their shelves, make sure you do so methodically. A general rule is to store like items with like. One example would be to place all pastas and pasta sauces together and all baking items together. Another is to dedicate one shelf to all your spices. Storing similar items together will make things easier to find. Try to store items that you use often within reach so they are easily accessible, while those rarely used can go on higher shelves. This process will also help you take stock of what you have.
Declutter Throughout the Month or Week
If you decide to do a slow decluttering by going shelf by shelf, have a plan on what to tackle daily, so you don’t lose motivation. Mark it in your calendar or schedule to make it easier to remember. Do a different shelf every week or day to make the process simple. This is especially useful if you have a really messy pantry from years of neglect or are overloaded with items and unused ingredients.
Reward Yourself After Each Task
Another tip to make the job more bearable is to plan little rewards for yourself after completing each task. It doesn’t have to be something big or expensive; it can be a small treat such as buying yourself a fancy coffee, a date night, or a luxurious bath complete with bubbles and face masks. Whatever you decide, it will definitely help you stay on track and give you something to look forward to.
Do Routine Maintenance
Once you’ve gutted your entire pantry and organized it to your liking, you’ll need to ensure it stays this way by regularly maintaining it. The most important tip is to put things back where they belong every time. Even if this isn’t possible or you have small children who get their hands on things, check that everything is in order at least every once in a while. This shouldn’t take long and will help save you from having to do another massive cleanout.
Make More Room with Self-Storage
If you find that you simply don’t have the space you desire, you’re not alone. Many people who live in condos or townhouses have smaller or narrower pantries with less space and sometimes no pantry at all. If this is the case and you want to make some room, consider using an offsite self-storage unit to clear out an extra closet of unused items so that you can have your pantry. You can put away items such as seasonal décor or rarely used cleaning supplies into self-storage for the long term so that your house has more space for necessities.
Once you’ve fully cleaned and organized your pantry, all that’s left is to stand back and admire your hard work. It’s not easy, but the results are rewarding and mean better management of your kitchen stock and supplies. Don’t forget to pat yourself on the back for a job well done! For more information on self-storage and organization hacks, please call Jiffy Self-Storage at 416-74-JIFFY (54339) or contact us here.