How to Organize a Small Pantry

In our little kitchen, we have a tiny little pantry closet. I mean tiny. I won’t complain, because I have friends who have even smaller pantries or none at all {!!!}. Ours also has nice, wooden shelves instead of those annoying wire ones. Since it is so small, it is important to keep it neat and organized.

I made over the pantry in my pre-blogging days, so I don’t have a before picture…but I do have lots of afters! :)

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

1) Do a deep clean and paint it a fun color! 

After I dumped everything out of the pantry and onto my kitchen table, I gave it a good scrub and then a few coats of red paint. I like having a darker color on the walls inside the pantry since it hides scuff marks. It seems like the previous white walls were always marked up. Also, it’s fun to have a splash of color greet you upon opening the door! I’m always more inclined to keep things straight and organized if I have a pretty space to work with.

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

2) Categorize and Prioritize

Divide up all of your goods into categories and think about which items get the most use in your kitchen. I like to keep those items on the easiest to reach shelves. The items that don’t get as much use go to the higher or lower shelves. It’s not so bad to have to climb a stool or squat down to get something if you’re only having to do so occasionally.

3) Contain!

Baskets and containers are my best friend when it comes to organizing in a small space! I keep almost everything in a container of some sort in my pantry. It helps to wrangle each group of items into categorized bins to minimize clutter. It is also so easy just to grab whichever basket I need, and then throw everything back in the basket before returning it to the pantry when I’m finished.

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

4) Take advantage of unused space. 

Stacking baskets have proven to be invaluable in my quest for organization. I bought my baskets at Target, but have been sad to see they are no longer selling them. I hope they’ll change their minds and bring them back! I have seen other kinds of stacking bins and baskets at other stores, even the Dollar Tree. Using stacking bins allows me to use the unused vertical space. I always stack the basket of the most used items on top. I also love my stairstep shelf for canned goods. It’s helps me see what I have available to use and again uses some of that vertical space.

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

I also LOVE these hanging baskets that I bought from Amazon to store saran wrap, foil, baggies, etc. I was able to free up an entire drawer in the kitchen {a big one, too!} just by taking advantage of some unused space.

5) Label, label, label!

I’m an obsessive labeler when it comes to organizing. You know exactly what is in which container without having to think too had about it. This is especially important if you’re not using see through bins. I borrowed a trick from Julie at Less Than Perfect Life of Bliss and made chalkboard labels out of wall plates and chalkboard spray paint. {Is that a genius idea, or what??}. I used bakers twine to attach, and a chalk pen to label with.

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

Keeping pretty much everything in baskets and labeled has helped me to keep the pantry neat and organized. Of course, life happens and things tend to get shoved in there from time to time, so I just do a quick clean out every couple of weeks or so to keep it all looking nice.

How to Organize a Small Pantry : Like a Saturday

I also have several hooks on the inside of the door to hang lunch boxes, aprons, and my bag o’ bags. :)

What is your favorite way to stay organized in the kitchen?