16 Nifty Kitchen Pantry Ideas for Small Space Organisation

Ideas, ideas, ideas! The internet is jam-packed with searchers needing kitchen ideas. At least if it’s pantry ideas today we can help.

If you have a pantry in your house then you absolutely should be making the most of it. Most houses won’t have one so we are the lucky ones. I live in a rustic farmhouse so they usually always have such space.

The problem comes with keeping it light, bright and a well-organised space, most pantries end up a mess with even less organisation than the kitchen itself.

In this post today we are going to look at a cool list of the best kitchen pantry ideas to help maximise storage space.

How do I get the most out of my small pantry?

1. Install Adjustable Height Shelving

Start from the basics, clear out your current kitchen pantry storage and give it a complete revamp by installing adjustable height shelving. This is the type of shelving with upright steel fixed to the wall.

The steel has factory punched square holes every centimetre or so so the shelves can be installed to almost any height required. Fill as many of the pantry walls as possible to max out your storage capacity.

Make sure the shelves are fixed firmly to the wall just like you would a cabinet as a lot of pantry items stacked together can be quite heavy.

When you start filling your pantry you will find space between the tops of items and the shelf above. With adjustable pantry shelving, this space can be minimised so an extra shelf or two can be added saving valuable space.

2. Get some clear plastic airtight storage containers

Next up on the list of is a food pantry idea. When you buy your food items from the store, they will all no doubt look very pretty. This is one method the manufacturers entice us to buy their products.

But when you get home, is there any point in keeping the original containers? Foodstuffs come in a variety of containers that are all different shapes and sizes. These different sized boxes won’t fit into your pantry very well making organisation difficult, so why not decant them all into proper food containers that are all the same size?

It’s a super simple storage space-saving trick. Your pantry will look much neater and you will be able to store much more with less wasted space.

3. Organise your new plastic storage containers

Keep all containers of the same height on the same shelves. I know it’s not mind-blowing pantry design science but you’d be amazed how many people complicate pantries.

This way you will be able to adjust the shelving so no height is wasted. Keep similar items together so they are easier to find, such as spices, pasta, snack items and grains.

You may find that even though it is easy to see everything, labelling your containers makes things easier.

4. Get a whiteboard or chalkboard for the pantry door

You know when you’re cooking something and discover you’re just running low on your favourite spice? Having a whiteboard attached to the pantry door lets you quickly jot down items you need to buy far easier than using a pen and paper.

This system also allows other family members to jot down lists of items they also want without bugging you all week. Then just before you leave for the shops, take a picture of the whiteboard with your phone and you have your entire shopping list at hand when walking around the supermarket! You’ll be amazed at how efficient this neat idea makes you.

5. Don’t forget the wall space inside the pantry above the door

In most homes kitchen storage is at a premium, this is an ideal place to add a small shelf or cupboard for keeping those special items….. Maybe a nice bar of chocolate kept as a treat or some surprise sweets for the kids.

Being so high it’s unlikely they will investigate this “secret area”! If you have a walk-in pantry it’s my guess they’ll never know its there!

6. Utilise the storage space inside the pantry door

Remember those “Over the door” fabric shoe racks from the 1980s? I hated them, but they got a lot of love from the wife, they were everywhere in our home.

Hang one of these inside your pantry door and you have a perfect readymade storage solution for all those little items you use the most such as spices, herbs, storage bags, cooking tools and school snacks.

7. Get a “Pantry Cart”

Having a small wheelable cart for the pantry makes perfect sense especially if you’re lucky enough to have a large walk-in pantry. Before you start cooking, pick all your ingredients from the pantry and put them on the car then wheel it into your kitchen.

Everything you need is now right at hand when you need it. Could you be any more organised!

8. Install some hanging wire mesh near the ceiling.

Another simple idea we love for a pantry is this. A piece of stiff wire mesh 2 feet square to 4 feet square hanging from the ceiling makes a great place to hook various items.

If you are drying some ham, this could be hung here as could various cooking utensils that may be ugly if stored in the kitchen. One shelf of an old wire shelving unit would do the job nicely.

The shelf would need to be installed securely with 4 wire or plastic ropes secured on the pantry ceiling. Make sure the mesh isn’t too high so you can’t reach it but also not hang down too low either. Steel hooks are available in hardware shops and they can be used to hook into the wire mesh for hanging things onto.

9. Plastic bag storage

We are all supposed to be giving up plastic bags nowadays but there are still a lot of them around and they can look rather messy if simply stored in a box somewhere.

Also as some plastic bags are biodegradable, by the time you get around to using the plastic bags at the bottom of the box you may find they have started crumbling into little pieces already. What you need is a solution to store your plastic bags neatly in the kitchen and also make it simple to use the oldest ones first.

  1. Get an old 5-litre plastic water bottle and neatly cut off the base.
  2. Then turn it upside down and fix it to your pantry wall somewhere convenient.
  3. The base of the bottle should be facing up and the neck now facing the floor.
  4. Fill the bottle with some old plastic bags and when you need to use a bag, pick one by pulling it out of the bottleneck at the bottom.

Your bags will now be neatly stored and you can easily use the oldest ones first. To make your plastic bag storage bottle more attractive you can paint it or cover it with some pretty wrapping paper. Or hide it completely by putting it in a pull-out.

10. Install “Lazy Susans” in the corners of your shelves

One of the top organisation ideas with pantry design. Remember that one time you found an old can of food right in the back corner of your pantry that nobody had seen for years and had expired long ago?

Well, maybe not but the corners of shelves are easy places for items to hide and get forgotten. Lazy Susans are rotatable sections of shelving that fit into the corners of each shelf enabling the whole corner piece to be rotated around so no space is wasted and nothing can linger at the back.

If you have five or six shelves, adding a Lazy Susan to each almost means you gain extra complete shelf space.

11. Use some laundry bags to store potatoes, onions and garlic

After the design, pantry storage is the next biggest challenge. You only really want the nice looking items on show to stop it looking like a fruit and veg shop.

Those mesh types of laundry bags that can be purchased for washing delicate items are ideal to hang up and store your fresh stock of potatoes and onions etc.

The small holes in the laundry nags will mean the produce gets constant airflow so will stay fresh for longer than if kept in an airtight plastic bag or container.

12. Magazine racks make great can storage

Baskets, drawers and well designed wooden cabinetry all help make a beautiful pantry for the kitchen. But also remember to think outside the box with creative ideas.

Magazine racks are one such idea. You know those steel magazine racks that hold books vertically. Well, find one that is just wider than a tin can is tall and you can use it to store up to about 10 food cans.

Put the cans into the magazine rack laying down like miniature barrels. Ideal for cans that all contain the same thing such as dog food or beans. And if the pantry is white just spray the racks the same.

13. Hang up a shower organiser

Shower organisers usually come with a place to hook it up and a couple of wire shelves making them easy to install with just one screw, nail or hook and very useful pantry storage system for storing small items that can be accessed quickly

14. Use crates on the floor under your shelving

Just like kitchens, pantry storage will be limited so it’s important not to waste any space. Where you haven’t room for any more cabinets you’ll need to think out of the box.

The area under your bottom shelf might be wasted but if you fill this space with a few plastic crates you can regain that space and store some heavier produce that might not fit so well onto your shelving with other items.

Maybe some large bags of rice, grain or a large bag of potatoes may fit nicely into a crate stored in this area.

15. Utilise Zip or Cable ties

Have you ever had that time when you want to hang some of your kitchen tools on a new set of hooks you’ve just bought only to find the holes in the kitchen tools are just too small for your hooks? Well, the answer for this is to simply loosely thread a zip tie into the eye of your kitchen tool.

Then you can easily hang it on the largest of hooks! The reason we love ideas like this is in. a bigger walk-in pantry you can have these in every nook and cranny maximising all the pantry storage available

16. Hang opened snack bags with plastic skirt hangers

You know the type of hangers they use in the clothes shops to hang skirts. They have two adjustable clips and make ideal hangers for both hanging and sealing chip bags at the same time.

Maybe not a winner of any style awards, but none the less a good idea for kitchen pantry storage.

Other Useful Resources

  1. How do you build a pantry in a small kitchen?
  2. What do you put in a kitchen pantry?
  3. How big should a pantry be?
  4. Dream pantry designs

John Devlin

Hello Hello, thanks for stopping by, John here and am the guy behind Easier House. Hopefully by now you’ve had a chance to look around the site and i am really hoping your enjoying it thus far! If like me you a bit fanatical about your house then you’ll find some quality bits and pieces on this site.