Small Pantry Makeover

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Last October I decided to finally get our pantry organized once and for all. Going into this project I knew I was going to have to spend some money to get it where it needed to be. To keep from spending a huge chunk of cash all at once I spread it out over several months. A number of the items (including the storage containers) were purchased at Homegoods which helped save some money. This post has been a long time in the making, but I’m excited to finally share our small pantry makeover! I’ll include a source list at the end of this post.

Some affiliate links are used at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog! For more information, visit my Disclosure.

Pantry Before

A quick word about our pantry. While hard to tell in the photos, it is an oddly shaped right triangle. The deepest part is to the right of the door and then tapers to nothing on the left. What they were thinking when they planned out this space to be the pantry I will never understand. Having said that, I am still grateful to have it. Years ago I attempted organizing it buy purchasing these large baskets. While they held a lot, they were too big and I found myself sifting through them to locate what I wanted. I knew it could be better.

pantry makeover before
pantry before makeover

Do you see the writing along the door frame? That’s where I mark the kids’ height as they get older. I love it so much.

Pantry After

on the door pantry organization
angled pantry organization

Put it in a Clear Container

What got me started on the entire reorganization of the pantry was when I found a packaged set of clear containers in multiple sizes while randomly going through Homegoods. It’s true, you never know what you’ll find! By putting baking items, pastas, rice, and regularly used dry snacks in clear stacking containers you will immediately maximize space! These goods all come in different shaped packages from the store making it difficult to stack or sort. And if not using all of the item at one time, you don’t get a proper seal and it doesn’t save well. Added bonus is seeing how much you have left of an item. Using a seal clear container is a game changer for your pantry! While they can be pricey, I know it’s something we will be using for years.

pantry organization ideas

Clear Storage Tip: If you are worried about no longer having the directions from the packaging, cut it out and slip it in the back of the container.

clear pantry storage ideas

You Need Baskets

The next item your pantry will most benefit from is baskets or bins. But bigger isn’t better in this case. What I learned from using baskets is too big of a basket will just be a dumping ground for the smaller items inside. This time I used several of these medium sized baskets to break items up into smaller categories. I then used one of the larger sized for bagged chips and popcorn.

When categorizing items it’s always helpful to label what is inside. I found these metal labels that look exactly like The Container Store ones for a lot less.

small pantry makeover

Basket Organizing Tip: Use smaller bins inside the baskets to keep items separated.

how to organize pantry with baskets
the container store pantry ideas

Turntables Make Your Life Easier

When it comes to storing your sprays, oils, and other non-refrigerated condiments turntables will simply make your life easier. Before using turntables I have dropped many a bottle trying to get to one in the back. These will make getting your item so much easier and will keep them corralled.

Deep Corner Tip: Add a large turntable for those hard to reach deep corners. Items don’t have a chance of staying hidden when you can easily rotate them to the front.

turntable pantry organization

Add Shelves

I love the look of the stair stepped organizers for canned goods, but they just weren’t the best use of space in our pantry. Instead I used small wire shelves I found at Homegoods. I’m able to stack a lot more cans in with them.

Produce + Cereal Storage

Just below the canned area are where I keep potatoes and onions. I don’t know why I love those metal produce bins so much but I do! Below that is our cereal. Ok, you guys, these cereal containers changed my life. Changed my life!! Cereal was always going stale in our house because the kids would not roll the inner bag down and close the cardboard flap. It drove me nuts. But no more! Cereal stays fresh and I can easily see when it’s time to pick up more.

cereal organization
clear cereal containers

Down Low Storage

At the bottom of our pantry I reused some of the large wire baskets I had before to hold paper towels, juice pouches and water, and back stock coffee items.

pantry storage baskets

Up High Storage

Obviously this is going to be for those items you don’t reach for every day. I repurposed more of my existing wire and canvas baskets for excess baking accessories are stashed up here as well as cookbooks.

small pantry makeover

Over the Door Storage

When tackling a small pantry makeover you want to make use of every bit of space. The back of the door is a great place to take advantage of! We installed this over the door rack as soon as we moved in to hold our spices (I added more of these small baskets for the makeover). But it got 1,000 times better when I swapped the regular spice containers for these matching glass containers and labels. Not gonna lie, these make me so dang happy. They’re beautiful and it’s so nice to have them all in the same sized container.

For the ones that we have larger amounts of or regularly shake over food, I purchased these containers and made my own labels using this label paper. It’s the little things!

spice organization
small pantry organization

I am so thrilled with our small pantry makeover! And since this took me a while to complete I can tell you that over the past four months it has functioned so well for our family. Items have stayed organized, everyone can easily get to what they need, and putting groceries away is a treat instead of the hassle it used to be.

Check out this slider before and after photo. So fun!

Pantry Sources:

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For more organization ideas check out these posts:


  1. Pamela Avatar

    Ahhhhhh, so beautiful. And all the extra space now. Love it❣

    1. Shelley Avatar

      It has been such a treat using our pantry now! I’ve not been buying duplicates by accident anymore because I can easily see what we have and don’t have. It’s just so much easier!

  2. Carolina Avatar

    Your pantry is fantastic! Any idea of the total cost to create such a perfectly organized space? I may do it one shelf at a time (-;

    1. Shelley Avatar

      Thank you so much, Carolina! In total I spent a little over $500. Keep in mind I spread this out over several months making it much easier to swallow. The clear food containers I got a great price on by finding them at Homegoods.

Meet Shelley

Hi, I’m Shelley! My belief is that with a little creativity and elbow grease, you can make your home look like a million bucks without spending it.

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