how to organize your pantry (FREE pantry label download here)
An organized pantry is the first step to a functional kitchen space. Having a pantry organization system makes it easier to grab items quickly and know when to restock. This is essential to reduce waste and have your kitchen run smoothly. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve bought something only to find multiples in the back of the pantry a few weeks later. Creating a functional pantry system that’s also beautiful and aesthetic is easier than you think! In this post, I’m sharing How to organize your pantry (FREE Pantry label download).
This year, I’ve been trying to focus on organization systems for our home and cutting clutter. I really want every part of our home to serve us and not create more work. For me, it’s so important to have a peaceful environment to relax in and mentally recharge. Oftentimes, for me, organizing gets pushed aside for more exciting home projects, but I underestimate how much peace organization can bring. I wish I would have done this sooner!
how to organize a small pantry
We live in an apartment, so our pantry space is literally just a tall cabinet. The shelves are tall and deep, so I feel like there’s a lot of wasted space; however, there’s not a lot I can do about this since I can’t blow out a wall or add extra shelves. Instead, I’m focusing on functional storage with jars and baskets so I can quickly find items and prevent things from getting lost in the back of the cabinet.
pantry organization on a budget
Getting proper organization takes a little investment upfront. I wanted items that would be super functional, affordable, and somewhat timeless so they’ll work no matter where we live.
Of course, using what you have for storage containers is an option, but if you want an aesthetic and cohesive look, find items that go together. They don’t have to match completely, though; different style storage items will give a more unique and collected look. I recommend investing in glass containers and natural weave baskets. These materials will create an elevated look but are also more sustainable than plastic containers. However, if you have kids grabbing things out of the pantry, plastic may be more functional and safe. Whatever you do, I recommend a variety of open and closed storage containers to organize your pantry.
pantry organization containers
Perfect for unattractive bagged/boxed items you go through quickly or don’t use often enough to have in a glass jar. I use mine to store snacks, alternative flours/grains, supplements, and canned items. I found these baskets shopping around Home Goods and Marshalls, but they carry the same style at The Container Store here for a similar price.
Great for products you want to keep really fresh or airtight. Glass is a little more expensive but really elevates the pantry look while also being a more sustainable choice. I purchased many KORKEN jars from IKEA and mixed in these beautiful walnut lid jars from Target.
Perfect storage idea for small items that are annoying to dig through baskets to find. I used mine for yeast packets, sprinkles, bottles of extracts, and other baking supplies—Lazy Susan from Target.
Labeling items in transparent jars are great for ease of finding items and grabbing them quickly. I created a simple set of these pantry labels as a free download if you want to use them in your home. Otherwise, you can find the template in my Etsy shop here.
basket label clips
These basket clips are literally amazing. Just slip onto the front of the baskets to keep everything compartmentalized.
how to categorize pantry items
Figuring out how to categorize pantry items was probably the biggest challenge. Everyone has their own unique food products and preferences for grouping things together so, it’s not one size fits all; do what works for you! To start, I pulled products out of the cabinet shelf-by-shelf so I could really see what I had. This was a great time to throw away expired products and get rid of things we weren’t going to use. As I pulled the items out, I began organizing them into piles with similar products. Below I’ve listed the categories I created and how I ended up storing them.
- oils, vinegar, nut butter
- canned goods
- snack foods
- baking supplies (cocoa, extra flour/sugars)
- alternative flours/grains
- frequently-used baking ingredients
- nuts and seeds
Next, I determined what products would be best in baskets and what products I needed to have in airtight containers to keep them fresh (listed above).
organize your pantry with minimalist pantry labels
The final step is labeling everything. Labeling items is imperative to maintain an organized pantry. I labeled my closed storage (such as baskets) and items in clear jars that I couldn’t quickly identify. Personally, I prefer not to over-label items. For example, my nuts and seeds are easy to recognize, so I didn’t label them. These basket clips from Amazon are amazing, and I easily made labels to slide in the front. I also created these modern minimalist labels for my pantry jars. They add an aesthetic touch to the pantry and make it feel so high-end.
To make these labels at home here’s what you need:
- Minimalist Pantry Label Download (6 pantry labels)
- Full sheet labels – (Weatherproof for Inkjet or Weatherproof Polyester for Laser printers with diagonal back slits. Both are great products, but if you’re looking for a totally oil-resistant and waterproof product (recommended), go with the polyester product. Note: the polyester material requires a laser printer.
- Inkjet or laser printer (if you don’t have a printer, print at any office store.)
- Scissors or paper cutter (I use this one)
After you’ve printed the labels, trim along the cut line, and apply to your pantry jars!
Note: The pantry labels are 3inx3in, and I’ve included 6 sample labels for your use. If you find you’re missing specific labels, want to personalize, change the font style, or require different sized labels, you can purchase the template on my Etsy shop and customize them to your heart’s content.
one week update
People often say the kitchen is the heart of the home, so making it super functional is essential to reduce waste and have life run smoothly. We’re now one week post-pantry makeover and everything seems to be working really well for us. Things have stayed really organized and we haven’t had issues finding products!
Now it’s your turn; tell me how you organize your pantry. I would love to hear! Also, if you tried my pantry labels in your home, post a picture and let me know how you like them!