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4 Pantry Organizing Mistakes You Don't Want to Make

Pantry organizing can be one of those big tasks we put off until things are in desperate shape. The pantry typically holds mostly kitchen appliances and shelf-safe foods. Sometimes, the pantry can become a catch-all for foods, becoming a disorganized mess. In order to achieve an organized pantry here are a few things to consider.

Storage containers in a pantry cabinet.

Restocking Incorrectly

Just like a store, you need to implement "first in, first out." That means putting ALL new foods into the back of the line for like foods. You might think you fly through the canned beans, only to forget about a few cans pushed way back that are now expired. As you are pantry organizing, check dates. This might seem obvious, but how often do we think more about just getting the right items into the right spaces? Every year, the average American family throws away around $1,600 of just produce that goes bad before being used.

Inefficient Grouping or Use of Space

When organizing your pantry, think about how you tend to use the foods. In your pantry, you should probably group things, like breakfast foods into one section and baking goods (flour, sugar, salt) into another. Keep your most used items, like spices and cooking oils, in the most convenient spaces for easy access.

Look for areas, like the very top shelves or hard to access corners, where you can put the kitchen appliances you don't use very often. Watch out for areas where you are wasting space (the back of the pantry door or poorly designed shelving).

Undated Decanter Foods

Decanters are great for more than just looks. A wide-mouthed decanter will help seal your food and keep it fresh, offer easy access, and let you know how your supply is looking at a glance. The problem is, if you lose track of roughly when you put it in there, you have no clue on what you should expect on shelf life. When you start dating your foods, you will likely realize certain foods are going months (sometimes even years), before you really plan to use them. Dates can help motivate you to use them up. Washi tape or a dry erase marker could be used to mark the date on every food container.

Thinking You are Done

Don't make the mistake of thinking your task is accomplished! Pantry organizing is a never-ending battle to keep things in the best places! With every shopping trip, you will want to make sure you put the items into the best places and in the back so you are using up older foods first. When you keep up with it, you won't ever get to that place where you have a monumental organizing task looming overhead.

Family in the kitchen.

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