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There are several things to know when it comes to a small pantry organization project. Today I am sharing a closet that I turned into a small pantry with wood shelves, the clear food storage containers and baskets. The tiny closet located near the kitchen was a catchall and used for storing pots, dishes, dog food and whatever random kitchen items happened to land there.
The new organized kitchen pantry closet is functional, easy to access and simple to keep organized. The pantry design consists of glass jars, pantry baskets, pantry organization bins and storage containers from our Amazon Storefront. For under $200, I gained a stunning pantry closet and that included the wood to make the shelves. See my DIY floating shelves tutorial if you are feeling crafty!
How to Organize a Pantry
Some things I wish I had known before I started this small pantry organization project:
The importance of making sure you have enough room for larger pantry items like bottles and taller items is critical! If I had planned a little better, I would have made my wooden DIY shelves adjustable to I could accommodate taller items.Jessica Bruno
Step 1: Start fresh by emptying out your closet
As you can see below, the closet was a catchall for all things “that didn’t have a home” and was cluttered, messy and not functional.
My goal was to use this closet above to store all of the pantry items that were being kept in a pantry kitchen cabinet below.
The cereal boxes and snacks were consistently a mess, half opened (and stale!) and I could never manage to keep it organized.
Step 2: Paint the walls and add shelving
I started by removing everything from the closet and adding a fresh coat of white paint to the existing shelves and walls.
Pantry Shelving Ideas
Pantry shelving can consist of wire shelving or wood shelving regardless of whether your have a small or large pantry.
Plastic Shelf Liner
Pantry Organization Containers
I did make an investment in plastic food storage containers (I love these (with chalk labels) and these cereal containers here from Amazon – I picked the red containers) which honestly, has made a world of difference in keeping this pantry closet organized.
The lazy susan above works out perfectly for our baking sprinkles and toppings. They were always buried under piles of food or tipped over in the back of the cabinet.
I added a simple Closetmaid over the door rack to hold smaller plastic containers which worked out perfectly for granola, breakfast bars and other smaller food items.
The plastic storage food bins without the cover on the door rack are perfect for granola bars, puddings, nuts and any small snack items.
I love that they come in a variety of sizes too. This type of granola bar storage bin is also a good idea too for a shelf.
It’s amazing how food storage containers can change a pantry in minutes for the better!
Our new kitchen pantry now stores our snacks, baking supplies, cereal and dog food. Whether you have a small kitchen pantry closet like mine or a full elaborate walk in pantry, all of these storage containers will keep you organized.
I may end up moving the tall dog food container on wheels to another spot but for now, this is the only place it fits.
These airtight food storage containers are the perfect size for baking products, candy or cookies that you want to remove from the packaging.
You can find all of these items on our Amazon Storefront here.
A fun before and after for sure!
Here is another before shot of the closet.
Organization Tips & Tricks
- Use adjustable shelves so you can accommodate changing items like bottles of soda or water bottles.
- If you using fixed wooden shelves like I did, be sure to map out exactly what you will be storing in the pantry to ensure you shelves are the correct height
- Use stackable bins or large baskets on the floor to corral large bags of chips ect. like I did
Did you know that Walmart Home Online is just like Wayfair now? You can buy everything on Walmart and the many times the delivery and sales are better!
If you do not have a spare closet to turn into a pantry, this freestanding style storage cabinet from Walmart is amazing! We have it at our Lake House for linens and game storage but it would be perfect as a kitchen pantry as well. You can find it here.
Our lake house is used as an Airbnb part of the time and this storage cabinet is perfect for storing so many things!
Looking to get organized or create a pantry space? Be sure to click our “shop pantry button” below to head to our Amazon Storefront.
Not convinced that turning a closet into a small pantry is a good idea? See how I helped my neighbor make a pantry closet in 2 hours and under $100!
I cannot even begin to tell you how happy this little organized kitchen pantry closet makes me. Another fun project we did a while back is add double sliding barn doors to create a “pantry door” on an open shelving bookcase that was part of our previous homes kitchen design. That was a fun project!
I would love it if you would share some of your small pantry organization ideas below in the comment section!
About The Author
What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.