Create Open Pantry Space With These 7 Simple Ideas

Open pantry with utensilsIf your kitchen is small, the last thing you want to do is cram everything into an enclosed pantry. If you have a lot of items to store, you may also feel like there’s not enough room for everything. Luckily, that’s where open shelving comes in.

A well-organized open pantry helps you keep your space from becoming messy, while also improving the function of your kitchen space. Believe it or not, a properly planned kitchen design incorporating an organized pantry can make all the difference in the convenience with which you are able to function in your kitchen.

Add Character and Function to Your Kitchen

When it comes to creating open pantry space, there are two ways you can go: with a shelf system or without. Each option has its benefits, but the best way to make sure that the space is used efficiently is by using both.

Shelving allows you to use every inch of your pantry for storage, while clear plastic bins and so forth help keep everything organized so you know exactly what’s where when you’re headed out the door in the morning (or scrambling around looking for something at night).

How to Maximize Kitchen Space with a Pantry

You can maximize your kitchen space with a pantry-door organizer, drawers, shelves and other space-saving ideas. If you have a pantry cupboard, you can maximize every square inch, because without a pantry space saving organizer, you are never going to organize yourself well enough to easily and conveniently find items you’re looking for.

The following seven tips on how to create open pantry space, you’ll never have to worry about running out of room in your kitchen again.

1. Install Open Shelving

The best way to create open pantry space in your kitchen, is by installing open shelving. 

Open shelving makes it easy for you to see everything and find what you’re looking for without having to rummage through drawers or cupboards.

Plus, if you have an attractive kitchen design that complements your home decor, open shelving can serve as a display area for some of your favourite cooking utensils and gadgets.

Open shelves make it much easier to find things than using an old box with an item list tucked away somewhere and hidden.

2. Buy Glass Jars

Open pantry with jarsGlass jars are a great to incorporate into an open pantry space. They’re easy to see what’s inside, easy to stack, label and store (or recycle), and easy to travel with as well.

Simply purchase a package of them from your local dollar store and add your spices and other ingredients, and store away. Because they’re labelled properly everything will be easy to find, and it will make your open pantry look much more organized. 

3. Use Clear Plastic Bins

One of the easiest ways to create open pantry space is by using clear plastic bins. Clear plastic bins are ideal for organizing because they allow you to see what’s inside, and they’re inexpensive.

They also come in a variety of sizes and shapes so you can find the perfect one for your space. If you have multiple stores near your home or apartment, look for plastic bins that are on sale at each store and buy them all there.

Make sure to use clear plastic bins with lids to store similar items together in order to maximize space efficiency (and cut down on clutter). For example, if you’re looking at storing cereal in your pantry, keep them all together in one big bin instead of scattering individual boxes all over the shelf.

This way when someone wants some cereal they know exactly where it is without having to search through every box individually until finding theirs—it’ll be right there waiting for them.

4. Organize Like Items Together in Transparent Containers

Multi-shelf open pantryA perfect idea is to organize like items together in transparent containers of similar sizes.

  • Grouping together like-sized items in the same pantry container helps you see what you have on hand and lets you know when it’s time to restock. This system works well for dry goods like cereal, pasta, and snacks—but also for canned goods that are stored in boxes or bags (leave them on their original packaging).
  • Organize by colour: This tactic is particularly helpful if your pantry has a lot of variety—like a rainbow. You can organize spices by their shades or types (red peppers) or other food products that naturally come in different colours (eggplants).
  • Organize by type: If all those cans start to look alike after a while, use this strategy to differentiate between them. For example, categorize fruits as apples vs oranges and pears so they don’t get confused with each other when you’re searching for an apple pie recipe.

5. Get Rid of Crinkly, Bulky Packaging

One of the main reasons pantry space seems so cluttered is because of all those plastic bags and bulky packaging. To make your pantry more open and organized, ditch the crinkly packaging and store your foods in clear containers. You can use glass jars, plastic bins or repurposed items like old spice racks. These are especially great for storing produce since they allow you to see exactly what you have on hand at a glance.

As an added bonus, it looks nice when you add extra items that bring colour or pattern into an otherwise bland area like an open shelf!

6. Repurpose Handy Pantry Accessories

  • Use a basket to hold small items. Baskets are great for storing small items, like batteries, paper clips and other mundane supplies.
  • Use a caddy to hold a variety of items. You can use one side of the caddy for dry goods, like sugar and flour. The other side can be used for canned goods or any other food item that you’d want easy access to.
  • Use a utensil holder to hold spoons, spatulas and other kitchen utensils.
  • Use a jars (or similar container) filled with spices and other small items such as herbs, olives etc…

7. Make Shelves Look More Visually Appealing and Organized

  • Add a few decorative items: the shelves you’ve cleared out and organized are the perfect spot to add some extra style to your kitchen with things like vases, candles, or small plants.
  • Add a few items that are functional: if you’ve got room on your open pantry shelves this could be an opportunity to add something like a cutting board or cheese grater—anything that makes cooking easier.
  • Add a few items that are both decorative and functional: there’s nothing wrong with mixing it up. You can also use these newly cleared-out shelves as an opportunity to display existing kitchen tools in an appealing way by organizing them visually. For example, if you have several large pots there could be one set of matching lids neatly stacked underneath each pot; if there is space on one shelf dedicated solely to baking supplies (e.g., measuring cups), then arrange them so they’re all facing outward instead of piled up at the back of the shelf where no one can see them.

Pantry Space for Smaller Kitchens

Pantry shelf in a small kitchenWhen faced with a smaller kitchen and lack of actual pantry space, keeping your kitchen clutter-free can be an Olympic-sized task. The good news is, with some creativity, even the smallest kitchens can be a functional, well-organized space, even when you do not have that jaw-dropping walk-in pantry.

Forget about endless cabinets, because one great pantry can free up space while also opening the place up.

If you have even a little bit of room, you are better off setting up a pantry in it, as it keeps all of your food out of the way, while also clearing the way for dishware and the storage of utensils.

A smaller pantry can be just like your normal kitchen shelves, but with a little bit more volume and storage. A small kitchen pantry gives you tons of space for storing things, and all you will need within is the right mix of shelves, drawers, and other space-saving units that will provide just what you need.

If you’re redesigning your kitchen, you may want to add the additional pantry space into the design process. You want your new kitchen to be functional, beautiful to look at, make your life easier and make a room look brighter.

The Take Home

Seeing an open pantry—where everything has a place—can be visually pleasing. By keeping your kitchen neutral and giving your open pantry a vibrant background, you immediately give that space a nice focal point. Read our tips for accessorizing your new kitchen for help making your kitchen look beautiful.

Creating an open pantry is a great way to make your kitchen look more functional and organized. It will also make it easier for you to get the ingredients that you need when cooking or baking. It just takes some creativity and a little bit of time!

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