Step 1 | Remove everything
Take everything out of the pantry – you must start with a blank slate. Wipe down the shelves and adjust as necessary.
Step 2 | Discard
Get rid of food that has gone off or is well past its use-by date
Step 3 | Arrange like with like
Group similar items together into categories, such as baking or pasta, spices, spreads etc.
Step 4 | Containers & labels
Remove food from its package and put it into stackable see-through containers and label. Labelling your containers not only looks good, but it also makes it easier to see what you have at a glance. Not only will you be able to increase your storage, but you will also be able to quickly determine when it is time to add something to your shopping list.
Choosing the right type of container:
- Square shaped containers take up less room in your cupboards because they use all of the available space.
- Transparent containers let you easily see when you’re running low on supplies.
- Over time, containers made from certain plastics can absorb food odours so those made from stainless steel or glass may be preferred.
- Containers should have an airtight seal.
- The opening of the container should be large enough allow you to easily scoop or pour the contents.
Step 5 | Rehome
Put your food items back into the pantry, keeping in mind that the foods you use the most need to be the most accessible. Divide your pantry into zones so you can find everything easily - baking, sides, snacks, canned goods, sauces, spices etc
Don’t forget the directions: Using separate containers is excellent but getting rid of old packaging means losing the instructions. Always cut out the directions from the package and tape them to the top of the container, so you will still know how to prepare the food.
Remember first-in, first-out. When you buy a new package of something you already have in your pantry, don’t add it to the container you already have. Put the fresh food in its own container and place it behind the older one. Make sure to label the item and include its expiration date, so you will never throw out perfectly safe food ever again.