When our family moved into this house almost two years ago, it was a very sudden and quick move due to some major issues with our last home. Because of all the work that went into packing and unpacking a house within 10 days (or less), I wasn't feeling very eager to organize my pantry or closets when we moved in. So over the last 2 years I've done small projects here and there, but mostly I've just closed the door and pretended like they don't exist... Such as our kitchen pantry.
This pantry is such a black hole. Things go in but they never seem to come out. Each shelf is over 2' deep and not very wide. If I buy something that is needed for a recipe (such as the panko bread crumbs below), I sit them on the edge of the shelf until I need them. If something crazy happens and they work their way further back on the shelf, I'll never find them and I just end up buying more the next time I need them.
Here's a good look at them in all their unorganized glory...
Last week I finally broke down and decided to get organized. I pulled out our camping table from the garage and set it up next to the pantry.
By the way, in the background you can see my super cute, mustard, Timi & Leslie (Diaper) Bag. Amazing. Seriously.
Then I gutted the pantry. I organized the food into different categories as I went (pasta, baking, canned goods, snacks...),and tossed out randomly collected items from the last two years.
I was pleasantly surprised (and a bit baffled) to find:
-8 glass storage canisters, empty and ready to be filled
-10 packages of pasta
-9 cans of chicken (Amy Johnson, I bought these after you made me some really yummy chicken salad at your house... seriously, how long ago was that!!)
-3 canisters of oatmeal
-3 bags of brown sugar
3 bags of powdered sugar AND
-6 different types of flour.
Look at that, there is a back to this pantry!
And yes, I do line my shelves in my pantry with floor tiles (my Grammy makes me!). It makes them easy to clean & dust, plus the cans and bags of food don't stick. It also looks a lot better. All of my kitchen cabinets that house pots & pans get the same treatment, along with the cabinet under my kitchen sink.
All that was left to do was to put it all back on the shelves. I had several large, metal, pull out shelves that I picked up at a garage sale. They're ideal for such deep pantries. I put them in first, then found homes for the remaining items.
I tossed my bags and boxes of rice and couscous into a basket so they would be kept neat and tidy. I also added a piece of wood in the back to be used as a small shelf to make the items in the back more visible.
I kept the oatmeal and cereal in their jars and added little chalkboards I had lying around to the pull out bins and baskets.
The metal baskets really are fantastic. Here is something similar if anyone is interested. I was able to snag mine for $20 for the set. I almost passed because I didn't want to spend $10 on each shelf. I'm glad I went for it now!
There you have it! It makes me happy every time I open that door. Of course this led to cleaning out my cooking drawers... Who needs spring cleaning? It makes a lot more sense for me to clean in the fall, right before the holiday season when my kitchen and oven are working overtime!