Today I am sharing how to get your pantry ready for the holidays. This includes how to organize and stock your pantry and some really fun ideas!
When it comes time to bake for the holidays, I get a little bit crazy.
I bake and cook every day in preparation for our annual Christmas party (we have over 200 guests!). I make holiday gifts that often involve food, and I cook a lot of holiday meals.
And I love every second of it.
Welcome to day two of Twelve Days to Get Ready for Christmas! My very amazing and talented friend KariAnne Wood at Thistlewood Farms and I will be sharing tips for twelve days to help get you ready for Christmas. And today we are in the kitchen. Be sure to head on over to KariAnne’s Blog Thistlewood Farms to see her post today.
If you want to read Day one of Twelve Days to Get Ready for Christmas, head on over to Nine Ways to Repurpose Last Year’s Decor.
So what is the first thing I do to get ready for holiday baking?
I organize and stock our pantry and I do it every single year.
How to Organize and Stock Your Pantry
Here are what I think are the top steps you should take to organize and stock your pantry.
#1 Take inventory of what you have
I don’t know about you, but every year I find duplicates in our pantry. And I laugh every year. Guess what I found this past weekend? Do I really need eight cans of pumpkin, four jars of coconut oil, and eleven different kinds of balsamic vinegar? Probably not.
When you clean out your pantry not only do you learn what you are missing, but what you don’t need to buy. For many years.
#2 Group things by category
In our pantry, I always store the baking items on one shelf and the oils and vinegars on the next. I keep all of the sugars together, as I do the breakfast items, flours, etc. As you can see in the photo above of our pantry at the beach house, I have the basic baking items on the top shelf and the breakfast items on the second shelf on the right. If you would like to see how I organized the pantry in our beach house head to my blog post here.
#3 Use glass, clear containers that you can see through
I finally figured out that clear containers are a must in my pantry. If I can see through them, then I know how when I need more. To learn how I made these canisters go to my blog post here.
#4 Label everything
This might just be the most important thing you can do in your pantry. I love labeling everything and I am pleased to let you know that my daughter makes and sells these labels. You can visit her Etsy store here. Why do I need labels? Because everyone else in my family needs to know what’s what.
#5 Replace the old and expired items
Every single year, before I start my holiday baking, I replace my baking soda and baking powder. It’s just something I have always done. I also check the dates on items that I think might need to be tossed. A few years ago I went through my spices and well … um … it was really embarrassing. I cannot believe how old some of my spices were! I wrote a blog post about this called Wow, this is Embarrassing. I also shared some tips about how to decipher the codes on the bottom of your spices to determine how old they really are!
#6 Use some of the amazing pantry organization items available.
There are so many great items available to organize your pantry. I put together a list of items on Amazon that are great for organizing your pantry. Also, if you want pantry labels, you can order them from my daughter in law Charlotte, here.
Add New Items to Stock Your Pantry
There are a few different items I have in my pantry that I use all of the time.
- Whole Italian Plum Tomatoes (San Marzano)
- Hawaiian Red Salt
- Organic Chicken Broth
- White Soy Sauce
- Clear vanilla
- Apricot Jam
- Canned Pumpkin
- Food Colorings
- Chili paste, Hoisin sauce, Siracha sauce
- Bamboo Skewers
- Parchment Paper
- Waxed Paper
- Cling Wrap
- Plastic Food Storage Containers
- Tulip or Paper Cupcake Liners
- Foil Pans
Get Creative and Make Some Homemade Items
Homemade Flavored Extracts
I just made a lot of flavored extracts for my pantry and also as gifts. It’s not too late to make these and they are so easy. Head to my blog post here for all of the details.
Homemade Infused Olive Oil
I made some infused oils this week. I went out to my garden and clipped some fresh basil, tarragon, oregano, and rosemary. It is so easy to make these because all you do is place the clean herbs in the bottles and fill with olive oil.
Here are the key things you need to know.
- When you clean the herbs, wipe them off and let them dry (for a few hours) if there is any water on the herbs.
- Store in an airtight container.
- While olive oil lasts about 24 months, infused olive oil only lasts a week. I will be using my oil to make homemade salad dressings next week!
Here are a few pantry items from Amazon that you might need to organize and stock your pantry.