Organizing our Pull-Out Pantry Drawers
We’ve been living with our new kitchen for about two months now and it has been fun figuring out how to organize every nook and cranny of this new space. One area we were really excited about was our new pantry drawers. If you remember our old kitchen, we had a closet with simple shelves that we added ourselves…
These shelves worked fine for us, but they weren’t very deep and they got disorganized fairly easily. When designing the new kitchen, we decided that we wanted deeper shelves (standard cabinet depth) that could hold a lot more stuff. And since they were going to be deep, we knew that we needed pull-out pantry drawers so we could easily see and access each item. When ordering the kitchen cabinetry, we added three pull-out drawers for food storage and one shelf for the microwave inside this cabinet.
Our New Pantry Setup
This is the largest pantry we’ve ever had! In our old home, we just used a kitchen cabinet for all of our food storage. And then, as you just saw, we had the closet with shallow shelves before renovating the kitchen. Now, this pantry feels very big and luxurious to us.
The pantry drawers are a dream. They roll all the way out and are very smooth on their tracks. They can also be placed wherever you want them so all of your items fit. We have the most room above the bottom shelf, so we store all of our tall items down there.
The Hidden Microwave
I’m very happy that we hid the microwave in the pantry. A few people asked why we didn’t consider having it installed low on the island, which is a pretty popular placement these days. I have some friends who have that setup and their kids are constantly pushing the buttons. We liked it hidden away, and up high, much better.
Whenever we use the microwave, we keep the doors open while the food is heating up. But, for the most part, the pantry doors are always closed, hiding the appliance. I love this setup and would 100% recommend it to anyone redoing their kitchen. Hide that microwave!
We created zones for the three pantry drawers. The top holds snacks, the middle holds lunch/dinner meal items, and the bottom is all about breakfast.
This top drawer has granola bars, chips, crackers, pretzels, and nuts.
The second drawer has pasta, pasta sauce, grains, beans, tuna, and other canned goods.
The bottom has waffle and pancake mix, oatmeal, cereal, granola, and more.
Creating these zones helps us when we’re putting items away. The categories are loose enough that we can easily find a home for any new pantry item.
Keeping our Pantry Drawers Organized
I like to joke that we’re “normal organized people”, which means we like grouping things, but we aren’t usually over the top when it comes to labeling, buying excess baskets/bins, or color-coding stuff. Sorry, The Home Edit. I sometimes think it feels a little overboard when you’re labeling things like “cans.” Like clearly, those are cans.
But, I’ll admit, I’ve certainly done it in the past and it makes for a very pleasant looking space. Just check out my mom’s pantry that I organized and labeled like crazy!
With that being said, we do have some organizational supplies that are really helpful to corral small items or keep things fresh. We use these cereal canisters and they’re fantastic. They hold an entire box of cereal and you can easily pour right from them. Plus, cereal stays fresher a lot longer than if you’re using the box it comes in.
Then, we love using small clear bins to keep loose items together, like the oatmeal packets above.
This clear hinged box holds all of our granola bars. We can flip it open and grab what we need quickly. It’s way easier to throw them all in here, instead of having five different boxes on this shelf.
For soup and cans, we have these clear bins that hold them perfectly. They’re nice because we can see what we have and we don’t have to rifle through all of our cans to find what we’re looking for.
Here’s a look at all of the organizational supplies we use in the pantry and around our kitchen, to keep items fresh, group similar items, and make areas a tad more functional.
Overall, I’m very pleased with the food setup in our new kitchen and our new pantry drawers. Things are organized, but not over the top; it’s easy to find a snack; and we have more than enough room for anything we want to store.
I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m married to Finn & mom to Rory and Ellis. Together we’re creating our dream home in Chicago, one DIY project at a time.