Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Thrifty Pantry Storage Ideas

It's Wednesday and I'd normally have a Wordless post but with the organization series wrapping up, I'm excited to share more information.

One of my favorite aisles in the thrift store is the glassware aisle.  I love old jars and, with a good cleaning, they helped make our pantry pretty.

All of the jars in the photo above (except the rice jar) were purchased from thrift stores.  The rice jar is a one-gallon jar I purchased from Walmart for only $5.47!

I redesigned our pantry in the old house like seven years ago... yes, before Pinterest. HAHA!  Although the pantry in our current home doesn't feel as large, I love the smart design of it.

The shelves pull out making it easier to access those items in the back.  As you can tell, I've put the things we access more frequently at eye-level.  My breakables store things adults access - rice, pastas, adult snacks, etc.  The bottom shelf holds pot lids... don't mind the pile down there, Hubbs does dishes and I choose my battles carefully, lol.

I mentioned my many uses for baskets a few days ago.  Well, check out what I snagged for less than two bucks:

Isn't he handsome?  Not too long ago, I purchased this basket to hold our open bags of chips and snacks.  Another awesome thrift store find, it is slightly taller in the back and makes piling bags of chips easier.  I hate to waste and keeping what's open in plain sight ensures we eat everything. I admit, I have a salty addiction...  it's pretty bad... as in, I can't even eat chips in public.  The amount I can consume is embarrassing.

Don't judge me.  Moving on...

Above the snack and pasta cabinet, I store our breakfast items - oatmeal, breads, etc.  In those white baskets, I store Ramen noodles.  My kid loves them.  She's at the age where she is self-sufficient so, when I'm on my lazy mom status these are one of her menu items.  Don't worry, we add lots of water and frozen peas and carrots to make them healthier (is there even such a thing as HEALTHY oodles o' noodles - lol?!).

To the left of the breakfast cabinet, I store our canned goods and dried foods.  The top shelf has Hubbs' back-up supply of protein powders.  Aside from the labels all facing forward (it's not OCD, it's easier to find things when I can SEE what they are, lol), you probably noticed we could own stock in cake mix.  I just love that I can use them for so many recipes.  Again, don't judge.  Believe it or not, I'm much better at the amount I keep on hand, lol:

OMG! Do you see those white storage containers?  They are GREAT for storing things in the kitchen!

They're sold at Walmart for $2.47!  

Check the site for more info (here).

When I was planning the pantry redesign, I'd pick up two at a time whenever I got paid.  I filled one with onions and one with potatoes...  I also used one to hold loose packets that fall all over the place in a pantry (dried fruits, cornbread, seasoning packets, etc.).  The handles make grabbing what we need super quick AND super easy!

In the cabinet beneath the dried food storage, I keep our sweets and baking stuff:

I needed our pantry to function for us.  I like to keep gum for my purse ready to grab.  I also keep the fruit snacks and even some candy ready to grab.  Frequent visitors know exactly where to go for snacks.  I already sense the judgment but we are healthy people.  I am a strong believer that healthy eating habits are formed when you allow yourself a treat every now and then.  I also know when you deprive your child of anything, they become curious and will try it as soon as you aren't around.  Don't believe me?  Ask about the Freshman15, lol.  What's the Freshman15? It's the 15 pounds many students gain the first year they're away from home.  Not this chick.  I knew what to order from fast food spots and how to eat balanced meals.  The minute a person tries the yumminess junk food has to offer, they can quickly become hooked!  So, YES, I keep it in the house but we don't CONSTANTLY eat it...  Anyhoo, let me get off that soap box for now... You can expect a post in the near future to discuss how I maintain my size 4 figure without a fad diet or killing myself in the gym.  

Where were we?  O, behind the sweet treats... That's where I store our flour and suga (no, not sugar... remember the post here?).

Another great Walmart find is the large glass jar:

I bought mine years ago for $20.  Now, they're $28.70 but they offer great storage!  On the shelf under our suga sweets (HA!), I store my baking supplies (candies, mixin's, cookie cutters, etc.).  Most of the mixin's are stored in a big ol' two-gallon jar:

No, it's not perfectly clean but how do you expect a [self-proclaimed] genius to function? Under complete order at all times?

I don't think so.

Think about it, I didn't move a THING before I took these photos.  These were taken of our real pantry to show how it functions in our REAL life:

Our pantry used to be worse and I know I can thank the aforementioned tips for our drastic improvement!

Do you have any tips for pantry organization?  Do share in the comments!


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