Imagine you try to grab the flour for your next baked dish, but it falls, and flour goes everywhere. If you kept your pantry clean and organized, that probably wouldn’t have happened.
Luckily, cleaning your home kitchen doesn’t have to be difficult. Consider the following tips for how to clean and organize your pantry to prevent spills and injuries.
1. Start From Scratch
Before you can keep your pantry clean, you need to get it that way. The easiest way to do this is to take all of your food out of your pantry.
You can set the items on your kitchen counter or table, so you can see everything. This will also allow you to wipe down the shelves and walls within your pantry.
If you don’t want to do the cleaning, you can ask a friend to or hire a cleaning service. Also, taking everything out of your pantry will allow you to see the space more clearly.
You can take measurements of the space and individual shelves. Then, you can develop a system of where to store everything so that your pantry can stay organized.
2. Toss What You Don’t Use
As you remove your food from your pantry, go over all of the items. Get rid of anything you no longer use or that is old and has expired so that you don’t make yourself sick.
If you have food you know you won’t eat but is still safe to eat, you can donate it to a local food pantry. Clearing out your food stock can help you get an idea of what you will need to organize when you fill the pantry back up.
Before you place items in the pantry, you can organize them into categories. That way, you can determine where to put different types of foods so that everything is easy to find.
3. Consider Clear Containers
Another thing you may want to do to keep your pantry clean and easy to organize is to use clear food containers. That way, you can see what’s in each package, and you can add labels for even more clarity.
However, clear packages can be expensive, and you have to spend the time placing food in them. Still, it can make it easier to find things when you’re hungry or otherwise need to be quick.
Some clear food containers are easy to stack as well, so you can save space on your pantry shelves. The containers can also be useful if you buy things in bulk because you can store the rest of your purchase elsewhere until you need it.
Just make sure you put food in the right containers based on their labels. That way, you won’t accidentally grab the flour when you need the sugar.
4. Store Similar Items Together
As you start to organize your pantry, keep similar items on the same shelf or in the same corner. For example, you may keep all of your baking items together, like flour and sugar.
You might dedicate another shelf to cereal and oatmeal and a third shelf to various snacks. Come up with a system that works for you and your family.
Storing items from the same category in the same area can help keep your pantry clean and organized. Then, you won’t have to search all over when you’re looking for something specific.
5. Line Up Duplicates
When cleaning your home kitchen, you may notice you have duplicates of certain foods. For example, you might have two or three cans of a particular brand and variety of soup.
To help keep your pantry organized, line up the same soup in a row from front to back on the shelf. This is especially useful if you have deep pantry shelves.
You’ll be able to look at the first can in the row, and you can feel behind it to see how many there are. That way, you can check to see what you need to buy at the grocery store.
Lining up duplicates can keep you from buying more of an item you don’t need. You can save money and space in your pantry for more important items.
6. Put Heavy Items on the Bottom
An essential part of keeping your pantry clean is choosing what shelf to use for what foods. Consider keeping heavier items, such as soup cans or well-packed flour, on lower shelves.
That way, if you drop the item, it will fall from a lower height and won’t hurt as much if it lands on your food. If you keep heavy items up high, they could do more damage if they hit your foot or toe.
You also won’t have to worry about managing the weight from high up or having to hold the food while stepping off a step stool. This is even more important if you have kids who can get into the pantry because you can keep them safe as well.
7. Place Seasonal Items Higher Up
If you have some seasonal items or foods you rarely eat, you can store them higher up. Assuming they’re not too heavy, this can be a great way to reserve shelves at your eye level and below for more common items.
Then, you’ll only need to use a step stool occasionally. You can also use the higher shelves to store candy or other treats that you don’t want your kids to access on their own.
As you go through your seasonal items, like holiday spices, you may also want to toss out some old items. Some things may last for another year, but you don’t always want to risk it.
Another benefit of using the top shelves for less common items is you can avoid making the shelves top-heavy. If that happens, the shelves could fall.
How Will You Keep Your Pantry Clean?
Being able to keep your pantry clean and organized can save you a lot of time when you need to find an ingredient or snack. Be sure to clear out your pantry and wipe the shelves.
Then, get rid of your expired foods so that you have more space for newer items. As long as you use a good system, you can maintain the organization with minimal effort.
Do you need help cleaning and organizing your pantry? Learn more about our general cleaning service.