Do you trip over things when you go into your pantry? Did you buy several things at the store, only to discover you already had all the items? Today on the Clear Your Clutter Inside & Out blog, I’m taking the pantry to task and getting it decluttered and organized! If you are ready to have a pantry where it’s easy to locate everything you need, listen for tips to keep your pantry in tiptop shape!

Pantry Decluttering Tips

Look out for the second part of my blog on organizing the pantry coming on May 17th.


Every second Saturday in May the USPS collects items for the local food pantry. If you have not decluttered and organized, now is a great time. This gives you a built-in deadline with an easy way to clear the clutter: You simply have to walk to the mailbox to donate unwanted items in your pantry! Are you up for the challenge? Why not make it fun and get your neighbors involved and see who can donate the most or challenge another street or neighborhood to see who collects the most. Let me know if you tackled your pantry and how it went.


Please do not donate any expired food. You can find out more information at


Anytime you clear out your pantry, consider taking the step of contacting the local food bank. They’ll let you know what they take. Sometimes food can be eaten past the expiration date.

Clearing Pantry Clutter

Most pantries’ have a lot of clutter and can be a dumping ground, especially if you belong to Costco or stock up on sale items frequently.


Take out EVERYTHING in the pantry. Everything on shelves, on the walls, underneath the shelves—completely empty it. Take the time to dust and sweep and clean.


After you have cleaned, and recycled, composted or thrown out anything expired, sort what you have into categories—you need to sort by how it makes sense to you, but here are some suggestions:

Assigning a Group

  • Dry Goods such as Coffee Cornmeal Dry Milk
    Flour    Pasta Rice   Oatmeal
  • Baking Supplies including Sugar Baking Powder   Baking Soda     Chocolate Chips    Condensed Milk
  • Spices Basil  Bay Leaves Bouillon Cubes
    Chili Powder  Cinnamon  
  • Canned Goods like Chicken Broth Soup Tomatoes
  • Condiments BBQ Ketchup Mayonnaise      Mustard  Olive Oil
  • Bread   Bagels English Muffins Buns
  • Pet dry and wet food; treats; medicines.
  • Storage aluminum foil, extra containers, etc.
  • Paper goods napkins, paper towels, etc.

More Pantry Decluttering Tips

But, it must make sense to you. My salt, baking soda, and baking powder are with spices, but for someone else, it might make sense to have with baking supplies.


You want to sort for your lifestyle. Snacks might be a category that you need and could include applesauce, chips and granola bars. You might also need an area for pet food. We keep our cat food in the pantry.


What food can you donate to the USPS drive? What pantry items need to be purged? What categories do you need for your pantry?

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