4 Pantry Ideas to Bring Sanity to Your Kitchen

DIY plate rack for pantry organization
Image: “11 Magnolia Lane”

These ideas will make your pantry motto ‘see, grab, and go.’

If you had to describe your pantry in one phrase, would it be a “sanity saver” or a “frustration maker”?

These four easy-access pantries are for you if you’re spending more time looking for stuff than getting stuff done.

1. Barn Door Pantry

Sliding barn door in a pantry
Image: Julie at Build, Sew, Reap blog

Talk about inconvenient. Julie from the blog “Build, Sew, Reap” had to hike to her garage to retrieve stuff from her makeshift pantry. And that wasn’t the only problem: The wet winters in her area did nothing for food freshness.

So she created a built-in pantry right in her dining room wall, across from her kitchen in her open floor plan. Even better, it provided a dose of architectural interest.

How did she pull it all together? Julie built out the space with drywall, installed three Ikea Billy bookcases for the interior, used three secondhand doors for the barn door, and bought other accoutrement, like a standard closet track system, from a home improvement store.

See the project.

2. Front-and-Center Organization

Custom panty shelving
Image: MSBrinkley

Homeowner Melissa was sick of digging through the four deep shelves in her pantry to find items stuffed in the back. So she created custom, curved shelving that took maximum advantage of her limited space and ensured pantry items were front and center.

Instead of installing shelves that were the same depth as the closet, she came up with a narrower design that maximized space across the closet’s back wall and two side walls. The result is an organized closet that keeps everything conveniently in sight.

See her tutorial here.

Related: Find Everything in Your Pantry with Lazy Susans

3. French Door Charm Replaces Off-Kilter Bifold

Danielle, the blogging mommy behind “2 Little Superheroes,” had a bifold pantry door that kept falling off its tracks. It made grabbing stored items a dreaded task. The off-kilter door also created a tripping hazard for her kids.

She considered replacing it with a different type of door, but the doors she liked cost around $100 -- a deal breaker.

Instead, she converted her busted bifold into a functional French door. She wasn’t 100% certain her idea would pan out. But with her mother’s help and $20 worth of hardware, she made it work. Get all the deets here.

Related: Two-Door Cabinet Becomes Fun, Functional Pantry

4. Doubling Down on Pantry Storage

Large platters and plates are awkward to store. Christy, one of the DIY mavens at “11 Magnolia Lane,” came up with an ingenious $40 pantry door rack that doesn’t waste precious shelf space.

She used pine board and wood dowels to create frames that protect oversized servingware.

FYI, this project requires some sawing. if that doesn't appeal, you can have the wood cut to size by your local home improvement store. Just make sure you measure twice to get the dimensions right.

Check out the DIY here.

Related: Problem-Solvers for Messy Pantries

Deirdre Sullivan bio photo
Deirdre Sullivan

Deirdre Sullivan is an NYC-based writer who's obsessed with maximizing every inch of her urban dwelling. She's a former fashionista who has worked for Lucky Magazine and InStyle. She recently traded her high heels and Fashion Week pass for a drill and bandsaw. Follow Deirdre on Twitter, and Pinterest.