How To Organize A Small Pantry? 8 Useful Tips (2023)

Some people asked, “How to organize a small pantry?”

If you have jumbled cupboards, it will take more time to cook or seek ingredients. Hence, look at this paper below to know more about the tips and tricks to arranging items in tiny pantries with space-saving and intelligent products simultaneously.

adjustable pantry shelving ideas

Valuable methods to arrange small kitchen pantries (Source: lelaburris)

How To Organize A Small Pantry? A Quick Answer

You should consider eight valuable ways to arrange pantries in a tight space. First, never forget the cabinets and pegboards as great substitutes.

Besides, you can buy slim pantry carts, drawers, and shelves to organize items. Some people also choose to bring in a sideboard or reuse the bookcase to compensate for the limited area. Coat closets are worth thinking about alike.

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8 Useful Tips To Build A Small Pantry

1, Make use of cabinets

Kitchen cabinets like Sauder can be great pantries. Suppose you know how to arrange them correctly. Also, you should pick up and install the overhead cabinets for their being beneficial to our back.

To keep things neat and organized, a couple of containers and storage bins are indispensable.

If not, you might be frustrated with various food labels, which lead to ugly visual clutter.

tall pantry cabinet dimensions

2, A pegboard

When you have a small kitchen with many cooking items, a pegboard can help extend the storage capability pretty well. For example, you can place many things on the pegboard, ranging from spices, utensils, pots to plants and food items.

walk in pantry shelving

Significantly, the versatile tool can be put anywhere.

Plus, it is easy to install at a low price.

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Of course, keep in mind that the kitchen is the soul of the house where family members gather to enjoy being together after a tiring working day.

Hence, giving it a fun, not dull, style while decorating the small pantries with pegboards would help.

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3, Buy drawers

From time to time, housemakers forget the valuable drawers to store items due to their modest size.

The deep drawers such as Space Solutions work and the cabinets keep food and ingredients.

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Also, please use the dividers, baskets, and bins to separate them and have easier access.

Some bins might be larger than the drawers, so measure them before buying.

how to organize a small kitchen without a pantry

4, Slim pantry carts

When you lack complete pantries, slim pantry carts can be great substitutes.

While it might not be big enough to include all of your food items, it can store the daily stuff pretty well. For example, you place in its spices, snacks, and cereals and pull it out whenever you need.

Saving space is another benefit of those carts.

pantry shelving units

5, A stylist sideboard

In a few kitchens, there is no cabinet. That is when a stylist sideboard such as Walker Edison would be your solution.

Besides, it is ideal for those who like hidden storage with closed shelves.

What’s more, the sideboard has a different surface. Putting on it small appliances or microwaves would save much space.

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6, Hang shelves

Shelves are always the solution for small areas simply because they can use the empty walls to compensate for the limited space on the floor.

Plus, to avoid the clutter, keep in mind to purchase a couple of containers, food jars, and bins.

Choose an awkward space in the kitchen or next to the fridge to place those items. That is another way to answer the question, “How to organize a small pantry?”.

tall kitchen pantry cabinet with drawers

7, Coat closets

Suppose you have an extra coat closet like Rubbermaid and it is closed to the kitchen, make use of it.

But what are ideas on how to organize a small closet?

Transfer it into another pantry by adding a few freestanding or mounted shelves combined with a couple of bins and baskets.

pantry shelving and cabinets

Sometimes, when I have many items to store, I need to maximize the closet. Hence, I purchase two to three mounted baskets or organizers.

Keep in mind just do that when you need to. Always, being enough is better than being excessive.

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8, Use a bookcase

When you have much more food than books, my advice is to repurpose the bookcases or freestanding shelves. Put them into the kitchen to extend the storage capability.

ways to organize a small kitchen pantry

13 Best Ideas To Make A Small Pantry

1, Stack it

One of the most common methods to arrange pantries with limited size is to use stackable trays.

For example, when you want to place herbs and spices, think about reusing the small Stainless steamer baskets.

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Not only do they fit hands, but they are also functional. Having access to ingredients becomes more efficient and faster than ever with them.

Plus, as human beings, our role is to save the planet by reducing as much carbon footprint as possible. That is why I suggest changing the plastic and new bins into those environmentally friendly baskets.

ideas to organize a small kitchen pantry

2, Sort items

No matter your pantry size, sorting all the food items before arranging them would help save spaces while reducing clutters.

Bear in mind to clear off the counters first. Then, arrange similar food into groups. That makes purchasing a suitable amount of containers, bins, and bars easier.

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For instance, I often arrange those things into four main parts in my pantries.

First, I put baking ingredients and items into a group and used glass jars to store them. Oats, sugar, cake flour, flour are some of them.

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Next, the packaged food with the same large-size bins should belong to one group.

That includes snacks, chips, tortillas, bread, cheese, mac, etc.

Third, the more miniature food packs are in one group, namely grains, ramen, pasta, and small baking items (like nuts, chocolate chips, and others).

The last group is smaller jars and bottles. They could be brown sugar, oils and sprays, drink mixes, condiments, graham crackers, and instant oatmeal.

best way to organize a small kitchen pantry

3, Ottomans

An ottoman often used in the living room does not mean it can not be put in the kitchen.

That is to say; you can repurpose the chic Greenco items to store food. An open-shelf pantry could become more stylish with a rattan ottoman lying at the bottom.

kitchen pantry shelving

4, Upcycle what you have

To save money, I suggest reusing the old stuff in your house.

Why should you get annoyed with strange and costly items while you already have what you need around your home?

For example, I have a few unused magazine holders.

So, I convert them into storage bins of my pantries and put inside potatoes, garlic, and dry onions.

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5, A Lazy Susan

Lazy Susans, known as turntables, are rotating trays on the countertop or table to spread food.

They are pretty standard in extensive and entertaining buffets.

But that does not mean you can not use them for your pantries. By contrast, they help contain many small tins and bottles.

Plus, you can arrange those items by a theme to find them more accessible. For example, put spices and sauces into two different quadrants to not misuse them.

What’s more, using Lazy Susans prevents you from pushing those bottles out of sight or to the back of a corner cabinet.

pantry shelving adjustable

6, Make a built-in

Suppose you do not have an actual pantry with doors; creating built-ins is another idea.

You can do that by installing open shelves into a nook in your kitchen for more details.

While it can take a little more effort and money to make the built-ins, they are promised to make your kitchen much more attractive and neat.

Otherwise, if you are on a tight budget, use floating shelves and painted breadboards as significant alterations.

kitchen pantry cabinets with drawers

7, Pro shelves

When you come to a professional kitchen, your first impression might be luxurious appliances coming together with artisanal ingredients.

However, suppose you have a deeper look in the area, notice the shelves.

They must contain pro pantries that every chef desires.

Often, those pantries of high-end restaurants have many sizes to fill in the wall or any corner space. Plus, their shelves are flexible enough to store several items at any width or height.

how to organise a small pantry

How to organize a small pantry? (Source: lelaburris)

8, Canning jars

Canning jars like ComSaf have been well-known as pantry staples for a long time.

That might have its root from its unique tulip design and the stacked feature above each other.

For this reason, those jars are not only for homemade jams but also for storing food items. For example, when I lack boxes or bins, I often put in beans, oatmeal, and rice.

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9, Break down big shelves

Large shelves often confuse people with finding items cause they contain hundreds of things. You should break them down by creating small cubbies to solve the problem. Separate them into specific types of meals, height, and theme.

However, the cost of buying and installing wood shelves might skyrocket. Use cookbooks or cabinet dividers as cheaper alternations.

pantry kitchen

10, Labeling

In a pantry, there are always a lot of bins and boxes.

While they can protect your ingredients from pests or getting stale, they make it hard to locate what you need fast.

For this reason, I suggest using the label maker.

When labeling those items, you can notice the ingredients faster. Also, a kitchen with clear and labeled bins tends to be more lovely and comfortable than usual.

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11, A wine rack

Do you have a couple of wine bottles in your kitchen, and you do not know where to put them?

Many people would choose to put them in any blank space they first see in the pantry.

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Those clunky boxes require a lot of areas. But, that can make the kitchen get cluttered.

Otherwise, building a separate storage unit costs you a lot.

Hence, my advice is to convert a shelf into a wine rack. Not only does that solve your limited-space problem, but it also saves your money.

pantry kitchen cabinets

12, Undershelf baskets

Undershelf baskets are pretty helpful in maximizing the storage capacity.

Using them means you can take advantage of the pantry’s height. Plus, different ingredients would have their own space in those baskets instead of mixing as usual.

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13, Use the door

Never forget the door when working in a small area. In this case, you can use the cabinet doors to install a few storage bins.

They do not need to be too large, but they should contain oils, spices, and other ingredients you often use.

Look at this video to know more about having a small kitchen pantry arranged:

Frequently Also Questions about How To Organize A Small Pantry

1, How to arrange a small pantry on a tight budget?

There are a few tips, tricks, and rules you can use to organize a small pantry at a low cost. First, think about the shelf height to compensate for the limited width. Meanwhile, do not forget the attraction aspect of the area.

Plus, use containers for dry goods, label all the bins and boxes with paint pens, and arrange each category by shelves.

pantry ideas for kitchen

2, How to arrange an awkward pantry?

For some people, they like an awkward yet impressive pantry.

For instance, you can arrange it attractively with a deep pantry by using a narrow shelf.

Purchase a permanent shelf for your house or just a wire shelf helper for rented apartments. Add in a couple of small baskets as well.

pantry ideas for kitchen storage

3, How to update a small pantry?

Renewing a small pantry requires a few steps.

First, think about using floating shelves and creating pantry cabinets by yourself. Repurpose your old bookcase, and TC stands as well.

Also, do not forget a cabinet edge and make a pull-out pantry.

pantry shelving at lowes


In conclusion, above is the complete guide about “How to organize a small pantry?”.

In my experience, some of the essential items you should think about when arranging the pantry are drawers, pegboards, cabinets, slim carts, and shelves. Not only do they save the area, but they also make your kitchen well-organized.

Plus, the idea of reusing or upcycling what you already have is quite common. Saving money and having a unique pantry are tremendous benefits.

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