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A Modest Pantry Upgrade

An empty kitchen pantry with wire shelving and wood flooring.

When we moved into our home in November, one of the first projects I wanted to complete was the pantry in our kitchen. The home was built using wire shelving that just wasn’t going to withstand our food storage, jars, appliances, and bulky items that we like to stock up on. Much of our pantry is dedicated to baking ingredients and I needed additional space for those essentials along with our typical cooking ingredients and pantry staples. I also wanted to make the most of the space we did have in the pantry and the L-shaped shelving that was placed in there was not utilizing all the height or the floor space well. My need for this project was one of space, storage and making the most of our space but I view our pantry as an extension of our kitchen and I did want it to reflect that as well.

The pantry is a five foot by five foot square and sure, it’s a good amount of size although not one of those glamorous walk-in pantries you often find on social media. While I’m always envious of extra storage space anywhere, I’m happy with what we have. In our previous home, our kitchen didn’t have a pantry and so I converted our front coat closet across from our kitchen into one. I’m used to working in much smaller spaces, so this pantry is a blessing and I wanted to make the most of it! Since we have also been purchasing furniture and there are other home projects in mind, I wanted to renovate this pantry on a budget. It was important to maximize storage by working with the height and wall space, but I also wanted the floor to have openness for flexible storage space. After doing some research and visiting the fun stores like Ikea and The Container Store, we found I want to mention that this post is not sponsored, and I’m not affiliated with EasyClosets, I’m just here to share a positive experience and what worked for us in our home.

The units and shelving we did find at Ikea were very clothing closet centered and much of what we did consider purchasing wasn’t even in stock. The Container store had great options (check out their Elfa or Preston pantry set-up here) but we found EasyClosets to be well within our budget and they had great designs plus once you take the measurements, their design consultant will work with your space and measurements to configure a great unit for your space. I loved that they took the work of designing out of the process for us. We were given a few options by our assigned design consultant, and we chose a set up that provided tons of shelving, maximized space with corner shelving and provided drawers.

Empty pantry before renovation where shelving had been removed and new shelving is being built.

We began by removing the wire shelving, filling in the holes, spackling, and repainting before building the pantry. We started with the corner shelving and then moved out. The entire assembly including painting and prep work took the weekend, however this could have easily been completed in one day. We took our time with it and had breaks in between to run errands and grab lunch. The instructions were straightforward and overall, the building experience was simple and easy to do.

The shelving surrounded most of the pantry walls, leaving open space on the right side to hang other items to complete the pantry which I’ll share below. I like that we chose an installation that provided about two feet of free space on the bottom where I am able to store appliances, boxes and baskets for storage. I like that we chose an installation that provided about two feet of free space on the bottom where I can store appliances, boxes and baskets for storage. There is also about two feet above which I can store larger items such as serving platters, large wooden cutting boards, wine, and our [Andrew’s] favorite thrifted pineapple cookie jar (am I storing that or hiding it, not sure).

Kitchen pantry after shelving from EasyClosets has been installed.

Here's a peak at the "baking shelf" of our pantry where I store a variety of flours, sugars, cocoa, nut butters, baking soda and baking powder and a wide variety of other baking ingredients. I'm still working on finding more storage containers and jars for smaller ingredients but this works well for me. I like the simplicity of classic glass jars. It's easy to gather what I need directly from the pantry or I can bring it to the counter. Refilling and scooping from the jars is a breeze and they are easy to clean. The labels I've used for the jars were left over from a project and they use a chalk pen that is erasable which is easy for changing out and cleaning as well.

Here's a before and after of our pantry:



While far from glamorous, it serves its purpose and we love what it's done for storage, space, efficiency and the overall look of our kitchen. Everything has a place now and there is so much more space which makes stocking our pantry that much easier. In summary, I highly recommend EasyClosets! We will most likely use them again for our bedroom closets when that time comes.

Here are some other items that helped to complete out pantry:

  1. This Plastic Wrap Dispenser with Bag Organizer has been a game changer for me! I can never cut plastic wrap evenly and straight from the box so now I just give it a pull from this dispenser and it cuts clear across. This also saves space in the pantry or from taking up an entire draw.

2. This paper towel holder. Sleek, affordable and saves space on the counter or under the sink. This has made life so much easier when grabbing for a towel during cleanup. No holes in the wall, it adheres and does not shift. Did I mention how affordable it is?

3. This Magnetic Dry Erase Calendar is where I put our dinner menu and meal planning. I love that it has a column on the right where I track what we're running low on. It's a great value for the price and the marker doesn't stain the board like many reasonably priced boards seem to do.

*These items are affiliated links. I make a small commission with every purchase at no cost to you. The money I earn from these commissions helps me to continue to run this website and share recipes and posts like this one with you. Thank you for the ongoing support!

If you have any questions about this pantry project, EasyClosets or the above products from Amazon, please let me know!

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