Kitchen Pantry Organization {Before & After}

filed under: I Am Mommy on February 5, 2016

See how my kitchen pantry was transformed after some much-needed organization!

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

This is my pantry. This is my messy, unorganized, over-flowing, ridiculous pantry.

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

The shelves are overflowing. There is no rhyme or reason. Just stuff. On top of stuff.

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

On top of stuff.

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

And more stuff.

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

And even. more. stuff.

Is there even any food in there?

After I started cleaning stuff out of the pantry I realized that I had a big problem.

Kitchen Pantry BEFORE

Two shelves covered every available surface in my kitchen. That is stuff from only TWO shelves!! Not only was I grossed out by the mess, but it felt so wasteful. By simply not knowing what I had on those shelves I was buying more and more supplies. A waste of space and money!

I realized had SIX containers of Chili Powder. I had 37 bags of half-used chocolate chips. There were 12 boxes of cake mix. I make my own cake mix!

Well. After promising a tour of this space on a Live Facebook Chat I was inspired to clean it.

Ready for the “after”?

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

I could not be happier! This space just feels better.

But.

Have you seen The Khloe Kardashian pantry tour? I saw it and immediately went into a #shamespiral.

Why didn’t my pantry look like that? I want my pantry to look like that!

Could my pantry every look like that?

The answer is no. For three important reasons.

  1. I have children. (enough said)
  2. We are a homesteading family. We have canned goods and canning supplies and big clunky tools and appliances and our pantry supply fluctuates with the seasons.
  3. Life is simply NOT this perfect. Then end.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

But I can sure try to make it is organized as possible. I am a big time fan of lazy-susans. They work perfectly in a pantry (and every room of the house!) and most especially for spices. You can barely see it but to the left, I have a jar of homemade Taco Seasoning. Because we use this at least once a week, it made sense to start making my own. I buy the spices in bulk from the local grocery store.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

The kids are old enough to be making their own snacks, so I keep those staples on their level and also on a lazy-susan. They love peanut butter and honey sandwiches!

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

After removing everything from two shelves in the pantry, I decided to switch things up and put the spices on a lower shelf. Because we use them with such frequency this really makes more sense!

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

Now to my favorite part, the baking supplies. (right above the spice shelf)

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

I use a LOT of baking supplies on a daily basis, so this is definitely not the norm in most pantries.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

You can see above that the flour and sugar are stored in large glass jars. Directly above them is the cake flour, confectioners sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, etc.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

I found these jars at Homegoods and love the sweet chicken on them. (We raise chickens… we get about 20 eggs a day!) But I also love that I can just write on the jar when I change out the contents.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

Next to the dry baking supplies is my extracts. I have no less than 6 bottles of vanilla extract on hand at all times as I can go through that in just a few months! (Every now and then a sweet blog reader will send me a sweet gift like the Almond Extract bottle you see above. Thank you, Shirley!)

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

For the chocolate chips, I found this wire basket at a flea market. I keep the chips in their packaging for a very specific reason and that is that they are all measured out for me. One bag is 12 ounces or 2 cups.

When I get a really large supply of chocolate chips (like the bags at Costco) I will put them in an airtight container.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

Speaking of air-tight containers, these are one of my favs! They are compact, clear, and easy to use.

See that container on the bottom right?

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

I decided to store all my random left-over chocolate chips in it. When I am baking for fun it is easy just to grab this and add to cookies or cupcakes. Plus… much cleaner!

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

You know I had to make room for my Homemade Cake Mixes!

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

I store my cupcake pans in this magazine basket. It works absolutely perfectly!

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

The bottom shelves and floor space is reserved for all the canning, small appliances, and other miscellaneous supplies.

Here are a couple side-by-side pictures so you can see just how much was done.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

The main shelves.

Kitchen Pantry Organization!

Thanks so much for taking the tour with me!

UPDATE:

So many people have asked about the spice racks… how do they work, where did I get them, are the actually convenient? Here is a little video showing how easy they are to use.

I simply slide it out when I need a spice at the back. Because of the size and shape, you can see the label of every bottle in the rack when you organize it.

Here is a link to the clear spice rack, and as you can see in the image of my entire kitchen I posted above, I did buy them at Bed, Bath, & Beyond. 🙂

There was a comment that the pantry was much too small for the kitchen size. In addition to that, someone said that we were being “excessive, over-shopping, over-storing, and with home delivery options within an hour or in some cases a store around the corner, people don’t need to over purchase items that sit in your pantry for weeks/months/years.”

Olivia in Pantry

The pantry is a walk-in and while it is definitely not huge, it fits our needs.

Spice Rack

I originally published this in February and this is my pantry as of today (6-22-2016). The spices have stayed super neat and organized! They are easy to locate and easy to replace. 🙂

Speaking to the “excessiveness” of our pantry, I just want to reiterate our specific circumstances. We are a family of 7 with 3 growing boys! We do not have access to 1-hour delivery or a store around the corner. The nearest “corner” is 10 miles away! We also like to can our veggies and store them for winter use. Canning is such a great option for homesteaders!! (BONUS: My friend just put out this AMAZING BOOK “Not Your Mama’s Canning Book” that has so many amazing recipes on what to do with those canned items that we never run out of ideas!)

Our pantry is not perfect, but it is functional and appropriate for our needs. I hope yours works best for you! 🙂

You can check out my Sprinkles Cabinet before&after here!

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Comments

  • Sarah C. says:

    Your pantry is wonderful! I bet you’ll notice that you’re finishing meals/baking quicker because you can easily find what you’re looking for. I try to keep it organized and put things back as I go, as well as making sure things get put away right the first time after shopping. It takes more time in the beginning, but the upkeep is a lot easier than the loss of time searching for something you know you have (or buying another because you don’t think you do (but actually have 12)), and when you do clean or reorganize, it goes a lot quicker when it’s kept up. Alas, it’s easier said than done. Fantastic job! I wish I had your pantry!

    I too keep all my flour, sugar, and large-quantity dry goods in clear jars. So pretty, and an easy way to keep things air-tight.

    That Kardashian one? There’s no way she did that. Someone was paid to do it and it was probably resorted right before the very brief view. That’s not real life. That’s TV. But must be nice 🙂

    • Amanda says:

      You know what? You are RIGHT! Dinner IS easier and faster now that I am a bit more organized! Also I think you are right about the kardashian pantry! 🙂

  • Dale Harris says:

    wasted door space could be used for spices other things

    • Amanda says:

      Not sure “wasted space” is the right way to phrase that. Right now everything has a home. 🙂

      • JoAnn Clemons says:

        I am not sure if I just missed it, but where did you get the containers for organization? great job!

        • Amanda says:

          All are from Bed, Bath, & Beyond!

  • Thitithip Phanmake says:

    Thanks Amanda. I like your shelves and did you know aclar may be I just mistake spelling. It have like pipes cover cream. You can show its for me.

    Thitithip P.

  • Dave says:

    Wow, this is amazing! It’s so nice to see an organized pantry, and you gave me some great ideas too. 🙂 Really appreciate this post, thanks!

  • Diane says:

    Hi, this is the first time I’ve read your blog and I just wanted to take a second to say that it’s really nobodies business what you have in your pantry and how you shop. I find it incredibly rude that people would even think to comment to that effect. Any organization tips are helpful and anything else is nobodies business but yours. So, keep on keeping on and ignore those folks that think otherwise. Thanks for the article and have a great day.

  • Jackie says:

    Looks great…I try to organize…..those who think your supplies are “excessive” need to mind their own business…:)

  • Shanna Sorenson says:

    Cute strorage idea!

  • Michelle meidinger says:

    Love your blog and these ideas are fabulous! I’m a busy homesteaders and a full time nurse so all the time saving organizing and do it yourself ideas are very helpful! ♡

  • IVY TUTEIN says:

    Um, excessive is finding 4 open jars of peanut butter. Everything in triplicate should only apply to insurance forms. Forget the haters and judgers.

  • Kim says:

    I am so jealous. I’ve always wanted a pantry. I use dollar tree plastic bins to organize my daughter in laws pantry. It turned out so great. I got all the same color to look cohesive and we loved the result. Each bin was a dollar. I have those clear acrylic acrylic containers. Love them. Don’t by the kind with the flip lid. They aren’t air tight. TJMaxx has the acrylic containers for a great price.

  • Shalonda says:

    Another helpful pantry suggestion: use an over the door shoe organizer to hang small packages, boxes or quick snacks.

  • Rosetta says:

    your pantry too big!?” makes me chuckle..growing up our kitchen was snaller then yours and we gad a walk-in pantry..about 4 times as big as yours..and yes, l had 4 brothers, we had company for Sun dinners 2-3 times a month, and we did canning every summer. (think 100 qts apple sc, 80 qts green beans, etc.) No, with a family of 7 your pantry is not too big 🙂

  • Stella says:

    Where did you get your clear containers tight seal containers for your Random baked goods leftovers. also can you print your recipe for your cake flour mix
    Thank You you post are so helpful

  • Shirley says:

    Awesome job on pantry. I too have had comments about my food storage spaces. Thankfully, these comments fall on deaf ears. As I hope they do for you. I purchased a 5ft.stainless steel 3 tier shelving unit for my food storage.

  • Rutha Christianson says:

    Amanda your a brave woman to expose your kitchen. I have a very tiny kitchen and would never do that. However you have given me lots of space saving advice. Thank you. I love all your recipes.

  • Marni Sirks says:

    Please don’t compare yourself to the Kardashian’s lifestyle. I highly doubt she shops at garage sales. I doubt she even cooks every meal and probably has a nanny or a personal assistant. Your pantry transformation is wonderful. I’m sure most of us start out with good intentions but life gets busy. It reminds me I need to clean mine out again. I love the organizing tips!

  • Lynn Harms says:

    Really liked hearing from a real mom that cooks!

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