How to organise a small pantry with deep shelves

Organising small pantries can be hard, but all the space is very valuable. Get some ideas to keep your pantry organised and maximise the space of your deep shelves. 

This Pantry Makeover was one of the most exciting competitons I had ever run! My team and I had so much fun giving this pantry a makeover. I truly get in the zone and in a really happy place when I can organise spaces!

The kitchen is the heart of the home and the pantry is home to all your delicious food and ingredients. Without a storage system in place, the pantry can often become home to uneccesay clutter whether you have a small pantry or a walk in pantry.  The feeling of trying to find something in the chaos can be overwhelming, so you end up buying more of what you already have but can’t find leaving double ups and out of date food. 

When I saw Peta’s pantry, the problems I noticed were:

  • The deep pantry shelves are not efficient
  • It was hard to reach the back of the pantry
  • Food was getting lost and expiring
  • Food was out of reach
  • Foods weren’t grouped together, they were placed wherever there was a space
  • The tone in Peta’s voice of how she felt about it
Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover

To organise Peta’s pantry and optimise her space so she can find items that she needs and prevent food wastage, I went through step by step process and helped her develop a system which would work for her. 

Steps to give pantry a clean out: 

  1. Cleared out all the food from the shelf
  2. As items were removed from shelf checked use by dates. 
  3. As we threw out of date food we added it a shopping list so these items could be replenished, if desired. 
  4. Cleaned the shelves. 
  5. Placed packets of items into canisters. 
  6. Added storage boxes, tubs, drawers and additional shelves into the empty pantry. 
  7. Added food back into pantry. 

Peta hadn’t removed all the items from her shelf since the day she moved in in 2007, she didn’t think I’d get any of the stains off the shelf. But I did!!  The Pink Stuff is amazing

Notes from pantry makeover: 

  • I created a pull out storage system to make it easier to access the back.
  • The storage boxes didn’t reach all the way to the back so I can use the back of the pantry to store canisters and food she doesn’t use regularly. 
  • The tubs also make it easy to clean the shelves, easier to clean a tub than remove all items from a shelf.
  • The items that were not used as much were put on the top shelf of the pantry. 
  • Creating zones will help to keep it organised. Zones I created were: cereals, snacks, cans, sauces/oils, spreads, tea/coffee, pasta, meals packets, pets and backstock. Putting the most used items at eye level.
  • It’s important to decant packets into containers to help keep freshness and give you the ability to stack canisters and make better use of space, if needed.
  • If you refer to instructions on the back of packets often, then write instructions on the back of containers (or cut out and tape to the container) so you can throw out the box. 
  • The use of the plastic drawers allowed us to stack containers on top, keeps everything tidy and contained. 
  • Label everything so things are easy to find, we used a chalk pen.
  • Tea bags are now stored in little containers (to easily see what flavours are available). This will not only make the teabags easier to find, but will be visible for when they need to be replenished. 
  • The use of split shelves allowed me to utilise and create more space. 
  • Sneaky tips: I hid the chocolates in the back divider of the drawers behind the muesli bars so no one would find them and eat them!
  • Peta had some crockery in the pantry, I organised her crockery cupboard a little more efficiently (using some of our elevated storage racks) which freed up space in the pantry. Peta was so pleased I did that.

A couple of ideas I had for the pantry but didn’t end up implementing:

  • Using a turntable for oils and sauces, but it was not efficient in this space.
  • Add a tier to the back of the pantry to elevate the canisters so they are easily seen. Could have been simply turning one of our trays (which we ran out of) upside down.  

The total cost of this pantry makeover was $546.30. This was really good considering there was no storage solutions and very few food storage containers used in the pantry before.

Our winner Peta loves her new pantry space and told us that it has inspired her to start baking again!

What makeover can we do next?? 

Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover

What type of pantry organisation products do you need? 

Crystal Storage Drawer with Divider
Crystal Storage Drawer with Divider – Small
Hudson Basket With Handle
Crystal Nest Storage Box
Crystal Nest Storage Box
Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover
Deep Pantry Makeover


A step by step guide on how to organise your pantry so that you can optimise your space, find items that you need and prevent food wastage. Continue Reading

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My mission is to inspire and empower others to achieve a sense of order and balance in their homes, enabling them to easily tackle daily tasks so then the rest of the day is filled with activities that bring them joy.

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As a popular blogger, influencer, and author, I draw from my expertise in home organisation, cleaning, and meal planning to offer practical tips and heartfelt encouragement to my audience.