Filed in Kitchen, Organization, Pantry — April 15, 2023

Pantry Organization Project

The first home project that I wanted to address this spring was my pantry organization project.  The reason it was the priority was to make healthy cooking easier and desirable.  With the health issues that have arisen for me in the last year, making more home-cooked meals is necessary for me to feel better.  At the end of the day, I did not want to walk into the pantry and see a jumble of products and not want to cook or feel anxious from the disorganization.


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Empty white shelves


Pantry Organization of Sorts

Unfortunately, the pantry had fallen into this chaotic state, even with two prior attempts at taming the clutter.  During the first attempt, I mainly decluttered and sorted items without adding any new storage containers.  It felt and looked good, but without proper containers throughout, it was not easy to maintain.


blurry photo of stocked pantry shelves


On the second attempt, I addressed two issues I saw from the previous sort, adding can organizers and some lazy susans.  The can organizers were much needed so canned goods remained in order of their best-used-by date and did not expire in the back crevices of the shelves.  Additionally, these organizers allowed for restocking ease, especially compared to stacking and moving cans to address expiration dates.


rows of canned goods in metal organizers


two rows of canned food in metal organizers


The lazy susans helped me gather similar items that had various shapes and heights and were not easily stackable.  I added lazy susans for spreads, sauces, oils, and vinegars to the larger second shelf.  Instantly, my higher shelves were more accessible because I could spin the lazy susans around and reach the back items without getting on a step stool.


honey, peanut butter, and other spreads on an acacia lazy susan


two acacia lazy susans filled with spreads and sauces


vinegars and oils on acacia lazy susans


Both the can organizers and lazy susans were perfect pantry storage solutions.  When I accessed where I wanted to go next with my pantry, they were both must-stay items.


The Pantry Problems


Besides these two storage solutions I love, I also love the fact that the pantry is a walk-in.  My previous two houses had pantries that were closets with wire shelving, so having more space and solid shelving has been a luxury I have enjoyed.  However, the shelves are fixed and about sixteen inches or more apart, so I was struggling to take advantage of the height of my space.  I needed organization containers that could.


Additionally, my pantry door is half glass with direct sight lines from my kitchen island.  Having an open floor plan means that any guest that comes into the less formal areas of our house will see inside of my pantry, so I wanted it to look nice.  I do not need an excuse to decorate any space, but this glass door had me wanting to do this space sooner rather than later.  Plus, when a space is more beautiful, I want to use it more.


Also on the list of issues were the deep corners.  I was not taking full advantage of this space because it was hard to reach items, especially on the lower two shelves because of their added depth.


The middle shelf that housed our microwave and toaster oven became a dumping ground.  There was a lot of open space, so it was natural to put stuff there.  I did not really have a system for backstock either, and most of that ended up there as well.


The Pantry Solutions


To address the height issue, I sought out tall containers or stackable ones.  Tall, bamboo-lidded, glass jars and stackable, acacia-lidded glass jars were used to store my pasta, nuts, and breakfast cereals.  Stackable bamboo bins and acacia bins were used to store soups, pasta, and salad items.


whole wheat and regular pasta in glass jars


acacia stackable bins with pasta


Outside-of-the-box items that had height and worked beautifully were water hyacinth multi-purpose files and acacia multi-purpose files.  These were thin enough to allow me to have multiple containers, and therefore multiple item types, on the narrower shelves.  I used them to store soups, shelf-stable almond milk, oatmeal cups, miscellaneous dried vegetables, and seasonal/party items.


water hyacinth basket with labels


soup stored in acacia stackable bins and a water hyacinth basket


acacia file bins and paper towels in a hyacinth basket


As far as the problem of the exposure of this space goes, I tried to create an inviting room.  I mixed several products for a textured and collected look—water hyacinth, acacia, bamboo, marble, ironstone.  The overall palette is one of woods and whites.  The addition of the kitchen-centric antiques creates character and charm to an otherwise utilitarian room.


salad items in bambo and acacia organizers


vignette of ironstone bowls, kitchen scale, bread board, and sieve


rusty kitchen scale


antique drying rack with ironstone plates and breadboard


vignette of antiques , including meat dome, stoneware crock, enamel utensils, and wire egg basket


vignette of antiques including an ironstone bowl, baking pans, meat dome, and framed cow print


three antique ironstone cake stands stacked


Those antiques, especially the ironstone cake stands, can be quite the conversation starters as guests enter our kitchen and see the pantry through the glass door.  Not only do the cake stands address the issue of aesthetics, but they also address the issue of the deep corners in the pantry.


In our previous house, my cake stand collection was stored in a glass display cabinet.  That piece has since been sold, and I had several stands still in boxes while I figured out their forever placement.  My largest ironstone cake stand had been unboxed during the pandemic, and I had it on my grandmother’s dining table.  It was too heavy to move regularly for styling tablescapes, so that led me to search for a new space to use it.  The pantry corners came to mind, and then I knew this was where I should put the others too.  I love seeing them stacked in there!


pasta in jar and a stack of three antique ironstone cake stands


stack of antique ironstone cake stands in an organized pantry


On the lower shelves, I added marble lazy susans.  I wanted heavier duty lazy susans here because these will be used for storing glass bottles of fruit and vegetable juices.  They will not need to constantly be balanced because they will support the weight of the bottles naturally.  Also, the marble ties into the cabinet base that is in this room and will become the dry bar.


canned goods on metal organizers and marble lazy susan behind


corner shelf of organized pantry


I added a marble lazy susan to the middle shelf too.  This shelf got a major decluttering.  I put the toaster oven in an appliance cabinet since I rarely use it. I also removed all of my cookbooks from this space and stored them in cabinets on the baking side of my kitchen.  Then, I added two-gallon glass jars for rice, a bin for miscellaneous grains, and several items previously mentioned.


glass jars, marble lazy susan, bamboo bin in organized pantry


organized pantry vignette


A water hyacinth handled basket got used for snacks and marble canisters hide the more tempting sweets.  Yes, I kept my microwave here.  We love having it in the pantry as opposed to built-in.


microwave and hyacinth basket in pantry


marble canisters and water hyacinth basket


Backstock got assigned to an acacia bin on the lower shelves.  I love having a designated dumb zone for all of the extras!  Below that, I added two lidded hyacinth boxes—one is a document box that I used for plastic flatware and the second one is a lined box (with the liner removed) used for paper plates and plastic cups.  These items were originally in my dry bar cabinet, but moving them here has been the perfect decision and one of my favorite moments of the pantry organization.


acacia bin of backstock and stack of water hyacinth boxes


dachshund sniffing lidded hyacinth boxes inside of a pantry


Future Pantry Plans

I completed my pantry right before Easter, and I am so pleased with how it turned out.  Already, I have been motivated to cook more meals.


I think this organization system will work well.  In the future, I hope to add some more antique décor. The space above the pasta sauces comes to mind.  Also, I would like to eventually get a skirt made for the bottom portion of the shelving.


two lazy susans stocked with pantry items


stack of antique ironstone cakestands and a lazy susan with pasta sauce on a pantry shelf


I am still on the lookout for an antique Persian rug for the space to add a little color.  Painting is a possibility as well.  Oh, and I would love to add a peg rail on the right side to hold my step stool, broom, and apron.


For now, though, I have pantry peace thanks to organization, and I am going to bask in that for a while.


Organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


organized pantry shelves


pantry organization project


pinterest graphic of pantry organization project

Your Pantry Organization

I hope seeing my pantry organization project helped inspire you to organize your pantry or gave you an idea of how to give it a refresh.  If so, I would love to see it.  Please tag me on Instagram @inheritedandco.


If your pantry is organized, but you are looking for containers for other spaces in your home, be sure to check out my Organization Shop Page for sources.


Also, if you are unsure how to organize your space, pantry or otherwise, you can see the steps I take when organizing any space in my Utensil Drawer Organization post.


Happy Organizing!



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  1. Rachel says:

    It looks beautiful Lauren! You’ve inspired me to try and get some “pantry peace” 😊

  2. Stephanie says:

    I am having major pantry jealousy over here! LOVE it. The can organizers are such a good idea. I usually have one or two of the same thing though and that is all so will have to see how I can organize that. I’m a huge fan of lazy susans too, they really make life easier. thanks!

    • Lauren of Inherited and Co. says:

      You are too kind, Stephanie! Thank you. I had some cans in smaller numbers too–those went in stackable bins or baskets, depending on categories.

  3. Donna says:

    Nothing better than a functional and beautiful space! Thanks for all the great pantry organization tips! Your space is gorgeous!

  4. Rachel - Tea and Forget-me-nots says:

    I never knew that I needed rolling can racks until now. How satisfying!