July 23, 2020 | Updated: 7 September 2020

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The best way to organise your kitchen pantry

Organize in the best way your kitchen pantry with these tips and ideas 

After surviving several months of confinement nobody can be in any doubt about the importance of having a well-organised kitchen. The kitchen pantry is a key element of that organisation, traditionally the place where dry goods are stored, precisely the ones that come in handy during lockdown.

At its most basic nowadays the purpose of the pantry is for storing anything kitchen related that is not kept in the fridge or freezer. Staples like pasta, rice, quinoa as well as legumes like chickpeas, lentils and condiments are the kind of thing we should keep in the pantry. Canned goods and olive oil should also be included, basically anything that will not go off. Traditionally non-perishable goods like crockery, glassware and cooking utensils are also kept in the pantry.




Ideas for pantry organisation

There has never been a better time to celebrate the pantry. In this article we will consider the best ways to go about achieving the optimum pantry organisation. Looking at different types of pantry and recommending different storage systems that will make meal planning easier, which is the ultimate aim of a well organised pantry.

The origins of the pantry

The etymology of the word pantry derives from the Latin word panis meaning bread which was adapted by the Old French term paneterie or pain also meaning bread.

The English word we are familiar with today like many words in English retains clues to its origins and describes where kitchen related food stuffs and utensils are stored.

How to organise the kitchen pantry

As a rule the pantry should be divided into products that are accessed on a daily basis and others that are more rarely needed. Similar goods should be grouped together for convenience. Canned goods, pulses, grains etc. should be kept together in easy reach. Seldom used utensils can be kept on high level shelves etc.




How to organise the food cabinet

The basics for pantry organisation are that the storage areas should be cool, away from any heat producing appliances, dry and dark. Depending on whether the cabinet is an overhead wall cabinet, under the counter or pull-out style floor to ceiling cabinet there are recommended methods for food storage. Being organised means avoiding duplication, so if you have numerous containers of the same spice or herbs gather them all within the same jar or container.

Similarly with baking supplies, group flour, baking soda and yeast etc. in a single basket or container. If you decide to have your pantry organisation in full view another option is to keep everything on view in similar sized jars with identifying labels. Mason jars are an ideal container because of their hermetic seal and transparency. Matching baskets or plastic containers also make ideal systems for storage on display or hidden away in a cupboard.

Remember there is no such thing as too much storage so making the most of the backs of cupboard doors for spices, or open shelving above a worktop are also great resources when it comes to pantry organisation. Pull-out shelves for under-counter cabinets are another a worthy investment simply because they make everything much more accessible. And even corner units can be provided with revolving storage carousels for making the most of every square centimetre.




How to organise food storage

Just like the typical fridge divides the shelves into containers for fruit, vegetables, fish and meat so too the kitchen pantry should have sectors for the various food groups. This depends on the layout of the individual kitchen and the triangulation around which most contemporary kitchen layouts are organised. The sink, the cooker and the fridge form the vertices.  Ideally pantry storage should be organised around this configuration so that everything is at hand when required.


Kitchen pantry design

Traditionally the pantry was a separate room and not part of the kitchen like the scullery or the cold room. Nowadays the pantry is often an integral part of the fitted kitchen, generally accommodated within a taller unit with pull-out shelving. The modern fitted kitchen is considered like a piece of cabinetry often representing the single most expensive item in home design. Hidden doors, roller shutter style doors and concertina style doors are just some of the ingenious methods to disguise the pantry.


Glass door panels for the pantry

 Choosing glass cabinet doors, especially for wall storage makes a great contribution to an open and airy kitchen design. Either translucent or transparent glass can be used but keep in mind that pantry organisation is even more critical when everything is on display. Combine with a wine rack for a luxurious and gourmet style kitchen.




Pantry design for the hidden kitchen

For smaller spaces with limited space in studio apartments or where space is a premium the hidden kitchen has become popular. This is a style of kitchen which can be completely closed off to appear like a piece of joinery. The folding doors once open reveal a working kitchen with all the appliances. The pantry for a hidden kitchen is generally accommodated in the harder to reach upper shelves and the backs of door panels. Anywhere that extra space is available.


Pantry organisation between the cupboards

No two kitchens are exactly the same and even a fitted kitchen with standard modules will inevitably have left over spaces and corners. The pantry can be adapted to these spaces with shelving that matches the finishes or compliments of the cupboard door panels. Jars and baskets are the ideal accessories to bring these shelves to life.




A free standing unit for pantry storage

 For fans of vintage furniture an old style dresser can be converted into a contemporary pantry for the kitchen. Remove the varnish and sand down to the wood for a contemporary twist to its design. Or add wallpaper to the insides to brighten up an old relic from the past.

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