There are loads of beautiful pantries on pinterest...filled with perfectly labeled glass jars in tidy rows...that is not my pantry. My pantry is designed to be used by kids. Nothing is fragile, neatly stacked or alphabetized. It is intended to be easy and relatively kid-proof. Here are a few of my favorite tips for keeping a functional pantry. You can find all the links for these great products by clicking over to my Amazon Influencer Page.
1. Fill every inch of shelves with categorized baskets or bins.
Most normal pantries full of boxes of randomly stacked boxes, bags and jugs. I like to keep everything in control by filling every square inch of my shelving with these cheap IKEA Algot baskets. I buy the no-frills version (without the white stabilizing corner clips) because they're always stocked at IKEA and usually cost around $2.50 each. The baskets are clearly labeled by category so it's easy for my kids (and their friends) to know where to find stuff and where to put it away. They're nice and wide and have no lid so nothing has to be stacked carefully...we just toss everything in. I also love that I can pull the whole bin to the counter when I need it. It's really handy when we're having a paper plate night or need to feed a bunch of hungry teenagers in a hurry.
You can find the simple labels I created for my bins over in the MeckMom shop. The instant download comes with pre-categorized labels, write-in labels, and an editable PDF version. Click here to check it out.
2. Use Buckets for Bigger Quantities and Food Storage
With a family of 8, we go through a lot of food. I keep smaller quantities of baking supplies in my cupboard and then refill with these 5 gallon buckets once or twice a month. They also double as a handy step stool for my little kids when they need to grab something higher. I highly recommend these gamma seal lids because they make it tons easier to access what's inside.
For a more detailed look at how my pantry works check out the videos below...