How not to make your pantry Pinterest-worthy

I think it took me about 9 months the second time around. If you have kids you may or may not know what I’m talking about but this is how long it took me to come out of my crazy newborn stage after having Cooper.

I didn’t really realise I was in it at the time. I don’t think anyone does really but you notice when you come out of it. It’s when you open the pantry to make breakfast one day and suddenly realise ‘um what the actual…. how is this such a mess?!?’

It’s when you go to get dressed and see that half your wardrobe is full of clothes that you either never wear, don’t like or don’t fit.

See when I have had a baby, I go into some sort of survival mode where things like keeping the pantry tidy get pushed waaay down the list of importance but really, keeping it tidy and organised would make me less stressed than the chaos.

I can be a bit anal about my pantry/fridge/freezer organisation and shopping (when I’m not in the newborn haze). It’s by no means Pinterest-worthy but I have a system and it works for me. My system means that:

  • I nearly always know what I’ve got on hand.
  • I always have ingredients for at least a few meals that I can whip up quickly.
  • There’s no running to the shops at the last minute for a random ingredient.
  • I’m not madly scouring the fridge/freezer/pantry during witching hour or when Will and I are both tired after a long day to try and find something for dinner.
  • Less waste – knowing what we’ve got and keeping everything relatively organised means usually I’m not throwing out too much food – that totally does not include the boys’ rejected dinner. That gets thrown out more often that I’d like to admit (that or I eat it. Oops).

I could give heaps more reasons but they’re probably my favourites.

I have a corner pantry, so it’s rather tricky to keep track of everything in there but I sort of use the front portion and use the dark, back corner for bulk things and things I don’t use all that often. I also use a Lazy Susan to store bottles etc so I can see what there is and access things without knocking half the pantry out on my toes.

Here’s a tour of my pantry. I did a Facebook live so it’s complete with Cooper coming and biting me on the leg towards the end.

Then I did this one with a little tour of my fridge and freezer. The key points in here (and the pantry) are keeping things in sections or categories. Now you don’t have to stick to any sort of rule, as long as the categories make sense to you and help you sort and find things, that’s the main thing.

I love baskets in the fridge and freezer and freezing things as flat as possible, either in ziplock bags or vacuum sealed is my big secret to fitting as much in as possible and keeping it organised.

I mentioned in the video that if you look in my veggie crisper on Sunday it will be loaded with prepped veggies for the week and here’s what they look like all prepped. Doing all the veggie prep at once saves a lot of time and stress.

So there you go. That’s how I organise my pantry, fridge and freezer. It’s not Pinterest-worthy but the main thing is that it works for me.

Do you have any super kitchen organisation tips for me?

2 Comments

  • Lydia Howard

    Reply Reply February 16, 2017

    Claire, here’s a tip for the fridge! I never have to throw out jars of tomato paste and mayonnaise anymore, because I read this tip somewhere that if you store them upside down in the fridge they keep for weeks without going mouldy.
    I’ve been doing this ever since and it definitely works!

    • Claire

      Reply Reply February 17, 2017

      Thanks so much Lydia great tip!

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