Savvy Ways to Store Food
A Good Storage Fit
Stale cereal and smooshed granola bars can make for a disappointing breakfast. Keep your morning staples in fine form with tailor-made storage solutions. Line up granola bars in baskets and fill lidded plastic containers with cereals, marshmallows, cookies, and other items that need to be tightly sealed for optimal freshness.
Unfitted storage units are a savvy solution for boosting your kitchen's storage real estate. This sturdy metal shelving unit, squeezed in next to the refrigerator, is outfitted with baskets to hold baking supplies and bottled drinks.
No pantry? No problem. Designate a niche next to your refrigerator as food staple central. Fill the space with shelves (a bookcase works well) and hang a tension curtain rod between the wall and the refrigerator, decked out with a curtain to match your kitchen decor.
Know Your Storage Space
When buying storage containers for baking supplies, keep in mind shelf dimensions and configuration. If the containers are too lofty, they won't fit, and if they're too small, you won't be able to store as much. Grouping similar-size containers together helps maximize space. Clearly label container to prevent ingredient mix-ups.
Redoing your kitchen cabinets? Consider adding a couple of slide-out baskets, which are ideal for storing vegetables that don't need to be refrigerated, such as onions and potatoes. If your existing cabinets are staying put, you can add the feature by simply removing a cabinet door and installing the necessary hardware.
While a deep pantry can hold more, a shallow pantry guarantees everything stays front and center. To use a shallow space efficiently, organize your goods by type so everything is at your fingertips. Prioritize what you buy, so that your pantry doesn't become full with unnecessary surplus. Store extras in a lower-traffic area and keep a list of backstock ingredients on your pantry door.
Never lose another food staple in the recesses of your cabinets again. A slide-out cabinet with shelves keeps cereals, cooking essentials, and snacks organized, and a quick tug of the handle puts everything in few. Plus, the front panel matches the surrounding cabinetry for a consistent look with added functionality.
Take advantage of unused wall space and install a wall-mounted spice rack to house jars of spices. With these cooking staples prominently displayed, you'll know exactly what you have on hand and what needs to go on your grocery list.
An old-fashioned bread drawer with a ventilated lid keeps loaves fresh and provides a convenient storage spot. If you don't have cabinet storage space for a bread drawer, consider a retro-inspired breadbox. The box still keeps bread bakery-fresh, but doesn't take up valuable kitchen cabinet space.
Spices and herbs may come in petite packages, but they are a big cooking component. Keep yours at the ready for any cooking adventure with a storage-smart spice rack, mounted to the inside of cabinet door. The dowel guard rails prevent the containers from sliding around, and the door-mounted unit frees up space inside the cabinet.
Fresh & Practical Storage
On occasion, a product's original packaging is not conducive to long-term storage. Eliminate flimsy cardboard boxes and non-resealable bags from your pantry and store your food in a streamlined system. Empty ingredients into air-tight storage canisters and cut out vital information from the packages (nutrition information, instructions, etc.) and tape onto the plastic containers. Be sure to locate the expiration date on the package and write it on the label.
This pantry is outfitted with a modular system, similar to what you'd see in a clothing closet. Shelves designed to hold shoes, purses, and folded sweaters are just as capable of storing bottled drinks and pantry extras. Outfit a section of the system with a wine rack to store your collection.
When you store containers in a drawer, sometimes it can be difficult to see what's inside. Eliminate the guesswork with lid labels. Glue vinyl paper to jar lids and use a dry-erase marker to label the jar's contents.
By the Jar
Store often-used kitchen staples in sealed glass jars, and set atop your counter. The jars look pretty on display, while keeping essentials such as pasta and rice within reach. Plus, countertop storage frees up space in your cabinets for less frequently used items.
Apply pantry storage strategies to your freezer to organize frozen goods. Laminate paper labels and tie to plastic baskets. Use the baskets for designated food items -- and avoid having to dig through bags of peas to find your container of ice cream.
Kitchen island carts serve a dual purpose as prep space and storage space. Outfit cart shelves with bins for items such as potatoes and onions, and jars for dry foods such as rice and beans.
Store chips and other bagged foods on their sides in a deep drawer like file folders. With bags tucked neatly inside a drawer, you don't have to worry about the contents being crushed by heavier items.
With naturally occurring preservatives, condiments can handle a refrigerator door's changing temperatures. Incorporate a labeling system, organize items by type, and place a label on the outside of the refrigerator door shelf to indicate what goes where.