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How To: Pantry Organization For A Small Pantry

Organization · January 30, 2019

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If you recall I did a post about our closet organization experience with The Neat Method. Well that really inspired me to try to do our pantry on my own! Our pantry is incredibly small but has a ton of shelves and space for all we need. Sure I would love to have a walk in pantry but honestly I think I would make a bigger mess. I know that organizing a pantry or any space can feel daunting, but I did all of this over a few hours (mostly during Liam’s nap one day). Pantry organization for a small pantry is absolutely key to it being functional.

How To: Pantry Organization For A Small Pantry

Step By Step:

  • First I took every single thing out of the pantry and put it on our island. I threw out anything expired, that looked gross, or that we did not use.

  • Then I organized everything into categories and section (Liam’s snacks, our snacks, baking, oils, breakfast, etc).
  • I used these clear bins and put things in them according to category. I also took things like crackers out of their boxes that take up a ton of space and put a clip on them to keep them fresh.
  • On the very top shelf I put the items we don’t use as often (mixes, oils, specialty items). Then on the next shelf are items we use a ton for weekly meals (rice, ketchup, BBQ sauce, tomato sauces, etc). The next shelf has mostly snacks for us, things I use for Liam’s lunch, nut butters. Then there is a shelf with Liam’s snacks and other things we use pretty often, protein bars. On the bottom shelf are things like foil, parchment paper, plastic wrap, cereal, oatmeal, flour, etc. On the very bottom on the floor I use these baskets for paper plates and napkins (on basket) lunch boxes/small travel coolers in one basket, bags we keep to reuse and extra food items like apple sauce, cereal, and soda for Andrew.
  • We ended up with about 4 trash bags full of stuff that needed to be thrown out. We can also now see everything and know where everything is. Now that it’s organized this way it’s very easy

What I Used:

I really only use two NEW things but I did have some of this already.

Before and After:

I really can’t thank Valerie with the Neat Method enough for inspiring me to do this. I really need to convince Andrew to let her come do our playroom and kitchen! They both need major help!

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  • 22 thoughts on “How To: Pantry Organization For A Small Pantry

    1. Scott

      Our old house had a fantastic pantry. Our new one only has cabinets. I miss having a pantry and thinking of tearing something out to make one!

    2. Stephanie

      I use the same method when I organize our pantry. Everything comes out, into categories, then back in. I really wish I had a walk-in pantry for all my kitchen stuff, but my shelf one works for now and is arranged similarly to yours!

    3. Diana

      I’m moving into my new place very soon. I’ll definitely pin this for when I need to put things in. My kids just throw things in the pantry and I’m like WHAT ARE YOU DOING ? Lol oh kids!

    4. Jacque Hastert

      Thanks for sharing these tips. I need to do this with my pantry and now is the perfect time since I won’t be spending time outside anytime soon.

    5. Makaela

      It looks so good! You should use the same method for your fridge. I did it and it helped so much to be able to see everything in the fridge.

      -xo, Makaela @ Uniquely Mickie

    6. Glenda

      These are all great tips. I really like using storage boxes because they do help a lot. I need to pick up a few more to organize my kitchen.

    7. Flossie McCowald

      Very neat and organized! We just have a “pantry cupboard” (floor-ceiling and very deep/narrow) that I’d installed slide-out shelves in 5/7 of years ago – those last two shelves were just horrid, though! So when our kitchen and basement flooded last spring, the pantry cupboard was gone for months being repaired – in its absence, I ordered roll-out shelves for the last two slots. AND (having had to take everything out and box it up during the interim) put things back VERY intentionally. Now each shelf has a purpose, and is organized according to that purpose (snack items, extras of things like nuts/dried fruits that we use a lot in cooking, extras of spices, etc. on down to beverages [bottled water, coffee filters, bottled juices]. It is SO easy to use – I never realized that not having those last two shelves as roll-out was really hurting us, but now we are finally beyond things getting lost in the back!!!

    8. Christa

      Thank you for this! So often I see posts where the pantry is huge. If my pantry was huge, I wouldn’t have an issue. Lol. This is realistic and incredibly helpful.

    9. Annemarie LeBlanc

      I try to keep my pantry as organized as possible too. Thanks for your tips. I will try to make use of them. Maybe there is still some improvement I can do to make my pantry more organized and functional.

    10. Becca Wilson

      My pantry definitely needs some help! Mine is so very messy and unorganized. This is some really great advice on how to get it back in order.


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