Setting Up a Pantry

Part of running a household involves budgeting and grocery shopping.  In order to save money on food, it can be helpful to buy food ahead of time, when it is on sale, and store it in a pantry.  So if you don’t already have one, consider setting up a pantry.

As a teenager, I swore I would never have a pantry.  My mom always had one, and I thought it was ridiculous.  If we ran out of something, she would ask me to run downstairs to the basement to get a replacement.  Well, mom knows best.  At least there was a replacement in the house.  And that replacement was purchased on sale.  By shopping ahead of time, you can buy things on sale, and keep them in stock.

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Locations for A Pantry

The first step in establishing a pantry is to determine a location.  Some options include:

– A dedicated cabinet in your kitchen

– A few shelves in a closet close to the kitchen

– An area in the basement

My pantry is in the basement.  We have a finished laundry room, and my pantry started with two cabinets on the wall.  I added a large shelving unit in the laundry room closet. It worked out so well, I added a second one.  At last count, my pantry items take up 8 shelves.  Here’s a similar pantry shelf:

Simple Deluxe Heavy Duty 4-Shelf Shelving Unit

Wondering how to organize your pantry?

Group your like items together and see what you have in stock. Here are the main areas of my pantry:

Shelf 1: Breakfast Items
Cereal, oatmeal, pancake mix and granola bars

Shelf 2: Pasta Sauces, Canned Goods and Soup
Red sauce, alfredo, tomato paste, tomato sauce, canned vegetables, cans of soup

Shelf 3: Pasta and Water:
Basket with all pasta (spaghetti, linguine, ziti); case of water bottles

Shelf 4: Coffee/Tea
Basket of Tea (Earl Gray, Cinnamon), decaf coffee, regular coffee, coffee filters

Shelf 5: Health items / Cold and Flu
Vitamins, tissues, ginger ale

Shelf 6: Household Cleaners
Clorox wipes, dishwasher tabs, laundry detergent

Shelf 7: Baking Supplies
Cake mixes, frosting, chocolate chips

Shelf 8: Dry Goods and Canned Items
Taco shells, mac and cheese boxes, baked beans, nacho cheese jars,

Organizing with Pantry Baskets:

To organize smaller items on the shelves, I use baskets like these:

They are great to contain smaller items, like taco spice packets. The lined basket is pretty and makes finding items much easier.

Next Steps:

* Determine a pantry location
* Buy some shelves and baskets
* Set up your shelves and baskets
* Start shopping for sales items

Happy organizing! It’s all part of running a household. 🙂