STORAGE STRATEGIES: PANTRY
Want to become a mealtime hero? Stock your kitchen storage spot with everything you need to fix good meals fast.
POWER- UP Discover clever ways to organize your food supply and simplify weeknight meal preparations.
whether yours is a spacious walk- in
area or a single cabinet, a hardworking pantry is about planning, not spending money. Follow three key strategies:
sort it out. Optimize your pantry by first emptying it. Toss expired, stale, and unappetizing items, then group what’s left into categories that are meaningful for your family. “I’m seeing nutrition-minded clients organize using categories like proteins, oils, and sweeteners rather than pasta, canned veggies, and baking supplies,” professional organizer Kathy Jenkins says.
think before you restock. Reposition shelves to match the height of items to be stored, and consider limiting shelves to 12 inches deep or shallower. Place foods you eat every day at eye level or just below. Position kid-friendly categories (breakfast, snacks, lunch-making supplies) at appropriate heights. Reserve top shelves for partyware, small appliances, and lightweight items like paper goods. Relegate heavy items (pet food, beverages, larger appliances) to the lowest shelves or the floor.
finish with containers. Resist the urge to shop until everything is back in your pantry. Then count the size and number of containers you need and purchase established brands so you can easily add and adjust as your inventory evolves.