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How do you organize your pantry?

Last post Fri, Feb 20 2009 12:32 PM by Toni B.. 3 replies.
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  • Thu, Feb 19 2009 10:34 PM

    • Kim_150
    • Top 150 Contributor
      Female
    • Joined on Sun, Oct 5 2008
    • Green Bay, WI
    • Posts 525

    How do you organize your pantry?

    I've finally got a little bit of a start on my food pantry. Just a few things so far, enough to last me a little less than a week in really dire conditions.

    I'm worried about things expiring before I use them, though. My pantry is in a tucked-away place, because if they're out of sight/out of mind I won't be tempted to use them. I took a sharpie marker and wrote the expiration dates really large on the packages- but for others who keep a pantry, what do you do? I'm thinking of making a list of products and expiration dates on paper and taping it to the cabinet door, and being sure to check it periodically.

    Also, what do you do with products that have no expiration date? I have a jar of salsa that isn't marked, and I know it will last a long time, but surely not forever. I wonder whether I could contact the company and see if they can give me a date. 

  • Fri, Feb 20 2009 6:28 AM In reply to

    Re: How do you organize your pantry?

    I call food companies about food dates (I have the item in my hand because I'm always asked for the bar code). Sometimes they will send me coupons for the products.

    I have a shelf unit in my kitchen plus I have shelves in my pantry. My pantry is my former back porch. Mom had it enclosed for me in 2006 to give me more storage room and then she bought me a 9 cubic foot chest freezer.

    I have kitchen cupboards, but I found that I forgot about food if it was in them. I am now using them for storage of my kitchen equipment.

  • Fri, Feb 20 2009 12:06 PM In reply to

    • Pat
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
    • Posts 14,463

    Re: How do you organize your pantry?

    I use my pantry continually, and replenish it as I find sales or good deals. I put the products I buy behind what is already there so that the older ones get used first. My actual pantry is small, so I have a cabinet in the basement where I store certain things. Some canned food, canned meat, dry beans, peas, etc. are down there and I "shop" there when I run out of things upstairs. That way there's a continual turn over and I don't worry about things getting too old.  

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  • Fri, Feb 20 2009 12:32 PM In reply to

    • Toni B.
    • Top 25 Contributor
    • Joined on Sat, Apr 5 2008
    • Seneca Falls NY
    • Posts 3,826

    Re: How do you organize your pantry?

    Kim_150:
    I'm worried about things expiring before I use them, though. My pantry is in a tucked-away place, because if they're out of sight/out of mind I won't be tempted to use them
    The more you build up your pantry, the more maintenance it requires but its well worth the effort. Whenever you add to your stash, you should move your most recent purchases to the back and move "soon to expire" items up front. I have one "active" pantry off my kitchen where I have plastic containers full of dehydrated potatoes, canned goods etc. I go there first when I'm preparing meals. If I run out of something in there, I have a large built-n storage cabinet area in my dining room (floor to ceiling 8 ft long) where I store what I can't fit in the first pantry. I buy pastas, canned goods, beans etc in bulk and what comes in plastic bags gets stored in plastic storage containers that fit on the shelves. I've also vacuum sealed some bulk items like tomato powder and powdered cheese and broth bases to maintain their freshness.
    Kim_150:
    I'm thinking of making a list of products and expiration dates on paper and taping it to the cabinet door, and being sure to check it periodically.
    Excellent idea. Also take a copy with you while shopping so you get what you need and not what you already have.
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