Pantry Organization 101: Maximize Space and Function

Pantry Organization 101: Maximize Space and Function

We run back and forth to grab spices while we cook. We sneak in late at night to eat a snack. We hide cookies from our family and friends on the highest shelf. It’s the most important room of the house: the pantry. But with constant use, it can be hard to keep the pantry organized. Here are three tips to maximize space and make your pantry more functional.


Whether you have a large walk-in pantry or a smaller space, sectioning off shelves can help make immensely with keeping things organized. If you’ve got lots of appliances like air fryers, slow cookers, etc., keep them together on one shelf. Free up space by fitting them inside each other when possible and storing lids separately in a stack. Keep a separate shelf for fruits and vegetables. You can store onions, potatoes, squash, garlic, and other produce in your pantry in square or rectangular bins or baskets- these fit right next to each other without wasting any space.


Minimize the time you spend searching for things in your pantry by using clear containers and labeling opaque ones. It can be easy to mix up different flours, sugars, and grains which look the same, so adding labels can prevent confusion and make cooking easier. Similarly, using sealed reusable containers for cereal, pasta, and bulk goods like rice can help keep them fresh and lasting longer. Go for tall and narrow bins so you can fit plenty onto a shelf. Not only will these make your pantry more functional, they’ll make it look good.


If you find yourself running out of shelf space even with everything properly organized, never fear. There are lots of ways to get creative and make more space. Add racks to the pantry door to put small things that you often access, like spices, tea, coffee, and oil. Use the space on the wall between the doorframe and the start of shelving to hang oven mitts or a produce display. You can also free up spaces by stacking cans and flat containers on top of each other. Make sure to label containers on the side if you do this so you can easily find what you need.

These ideas will help you create the ideal pantry for your needs, and keep it organized as you continue using it.