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Organizing my Pantry of Shame

Hi, my name is Liz, and I’m disorganized. I recently accepted Marie Kondo into my heart, and I’m working on turning my disorganization around! This weekend I tackled an area that brings me a lot of trouble: organizing my pantry, or as I call it, my “cabinet of shame.” (I seriously didn’t let my boyfriend see my pantry until at least 3 months of dating).


Here’s a live peak before organizing my pantry of shame:

Organizing my pantry

As you can see, there are constantly random food items rolling around in my pantry – bags of m&ms, half eaten containers of Oreos, pieces of pasta, you name it. I’ve been trying to get on a health kick lately, but that’s hard when I have no idea what’s even in my pantry!

Marie Kondo’s philosophy is that if you can’t view your items, you won’t use them (Kondo 3:16). I decided to take her word as truth and organized my pantry in a way where I can see it all. The good, the bad, and the excessive chocolate.

The first thing I did while organizing my pantry was take everything out of the cabinet and organize it into groups. The categories I ended up creating were:

  • Pasta (a major food group)
  • Salted Snacks (chips, croutons, nuts)
  • Candy (necessary for survival)
  • Cookies (and possibly also excess spillover from the candy section)
  • Baking Supplies (flour, sugar, baking powder)
  • Baking Add-ins (boxed baking mixes, chocolate chips, vanilla, frosting, etc.)
  • Canned foods (veggies, soups, sauces)

Next, I did a lot of throwing out. Behind the first layer of food in my pantry, I found a plethora of expired goods. It hurt my heart to throw away food I never even touched, but it made me feel better knowing that my new system would prevent exact this kind of waste.

In case you’re wondering how long it’s been since I last sorted through my pantry, here’s something I tossed with a 2016 expiration date…I wish I was kidding.

Organizing my pantry
Once I had everything sorted and said a sad goodbye to my wasted food, I separated my remaining items into containers, like so:
Organizing my pantry

(In case you’re wondering, where I got the containers, I wish I could hit you with a link, but these are all from my parent’s basement, acquired from my grandmother’s house (thanks, Omi!). But I’m pretty sure you can get even cuter, cheap containers at the good ole Dollar Store.)

After I sorted through my food, I then labeled all of these containers according to the categories above. I placed them back in the pantry, and low and behold, MY PANTRY IS NOW ORGANIZED.

This method of organization has been awesome because it’s SO EASY to see what I already have, and to find what I need. I can easily slide a container out when I’m looking for something specific, without having to dig around in the depths of a shelf.

For example, now I can see exactly how much candy I have:

Am I proud or embarrassed? Honestly, not sure, but now that I know how much chocolate I have, I can hold off on buying any more for quite a while…

Until then, I’ll be here eating all of the candy I can now see very, very clearly.

Thanks for letting me share! I feel so much better now that I’m done organizing my pantry of shame.

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