Recently, my family down-sized to a smaller house with an ill-fitting kitchen. With plans to remodel, we are finding interim solutions for our pantry until we can do something a bit more permanent. If you are living in a temporary situation, see if any of these tips can help keep your pantry in order until your dream kitchen is a reality.
>> Consider height. Right now we have everything in one pull out drawer. Because our daughter is shorter than us and we want her to be able to help herself, we did not want to put anything out of her reach.
>> Store like items together. For example try to develop a system where you can keep a shelf or area for pizza and pasta sauces, one for rice and beans, one for pasta, and one for nuts and granola bars. You'll save money by not buying duplicates and save time and energy in finding what you need right away when you need it. You can also create your grocery list to mirror these categories so it is easy to see what you need the next time you go shopping. Next week's post is all about grocery shopping, so if you are into this kind of stuff you're in for a treat.
>> Create a snack bin for anything kid approved. This is a good idea for the pantry and the fridge. For anything that is individually wrapped like granola bars, take them out of the box and put them in an easy grab and go container or basket. That way when mouths are hungry, you can have them get their own snack if they are old enough to handle the task. One less thing for you to have to do.
>> Down size the packaging. Because we don't have more than just this drawer space for right now, we cannot store tall boxes of anything like cereal. Since most of the time the boxes aren't full anyway, I take the cereal bag out and use a clothespin for a clip. And yes, that is Peanut Butter Cap'n Crunch, don't judge. Although there are a ton of great options out there for bag clips, I like the clothespins because they are really inexpensive and have enough spring to hold any bag. They work in the pantry or the fridge/freezer without cracking because they are made of wood and not plastic. Plus I like the look of them.
I store the clips here in this metal bucket I have hanging on the wall next to the pantry drawer. Again, not too high so that our daughter can reach them on her own.
>> Store more perishable food in full view. We keep a large bowl by our sink (or several during this time of year) so we can keep an eye on the potatoes, onions, garlic and avocados that don't go in the refrigerator. I like eating apples and tomatoes at room temperature so you can really taste the flavor. When we need fruit and vegetables they are easy to find and if they go bad, we can quickly throw them out to avoid mold or contamination to other items. I love this video that my friend sent me!