Spring cleaning is the perfect time to take a really good look at your pantry and use these steps to get it organized, after all if you can find your ingredients easily then meal prep will go so much more smoothly! It may seem daunting to organize when you have small pantry cabinets. But these tips for ways to organize will surely help you create a functional pantry cabinet!
How To Organize Small Pantry Cabinets
Take everything out of the pantry. Depending on how big yours is you might need to put things in boxes, or you could just pile it all on the kitchen table or counter. Keep a bin bag with you and throw anything you obviously won’t use straight in there, like that jar of dried herbs that went out of date 10 years ago. Once the pantry is empty give the shelves a good scrub with hot soapy water and leave the doors open so it can dry.
Now that everything is spread out on your kitchen table you’ll really be able to see what you’ve got. Usually this is the point where you discover 3 half empty packets of flour, or that exotic ingredient you bought for a recipe a year ago and have never used since. Be realistic about the things that are worth keeping and toss everything else straight out.
How do you use your pantry? Is it helpful to you to have all the cans in one place and all the packets in another? Or does it make more sense to order things in a different way? If you bake a lot you might like to have all your baking ingredients in one basket that you can just pull out and take into the kitchen when you need it. Or perhaps it makes sense to keep the sushi rice, nori, pickled ginger and so on all together so you can grab them all when you want to make sushi instead of having the rice in one place and the ginger in another. Do you need a packed lunch making station or a kids’ snack box? Whatever you do most often, keeping everything together can make it so much easier.
On to the fun bit! This is where you get to go shopping for all those cute storage containers and Pinterest-worthy labels.
Did you know I sell labels?? Check out some of my favorites!!
The last step is to make sure you really do use what you have. First, write a list of anything that needs using up and make sure to include it in your meal plans for the next few weeks. You could also plan a few emergency meals that can be made entirely from store cupboard and freezer ingredients. Print out the recipe and put it in a paper bag with all the store cupboard ingredients, and make sure any frozen ingredients are labelled and in the freezer. Then next time the after school sports practice is cancelled or everyone gets sick and you can’t go shopping, all you have to do is grab the paper bag and follow the recipe.