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  • Writer's pictureAndrea Wenzel

Why YOU Need a Working Pantry Now and How to Get Started TODAY

The pantry of your home is an often overlooked but significant area. Not only does it provide a convenient place to store food, but it can also help you organize your time and energy to create meals quickly and efficiently. With the proper organization and some simple stocking tips, you can make sure that your pantry is always ready for whatever culinary adventures come your way. Prepping for emergencies is an essential part of financial planning. A comprehensive pantry can provide the necessary supplies to help you and your family navigate a difficult situation. Not only is it one of the most cost-effective ways to prepare, but it can also give you peace of mind knowing that you have everything you need in case of an unexpected event.

What is a working pantry?

A working pantry is an essential part of any modern kitchen and is a place to store food used regularly but typically away from the kitchen. It can provide extra storage space for your cooking and baking supplies and a convenient location to keep frequently used items within easy reach. A working pantry can help you stay organized and make the most of your kitchen space, allowing you to create delicious meals without searching cluttered cupboards. A functional pantry usually contains enough food to last 8-12 weeks.

Where is a good location for my pantry?

When deciding on the best location for your pantry, there are a few things to keep in mind. Factors such as convenience, space availability, and design are all critical considerations. With careful planning, you can create an efficient and aesthetically pleasing pantry. The right location will help you maximize storage and make cooking at home more accessible and enjoyable. Storing food outside the kitchen eliminates clutter and opens up your space for faster cooking with less cleanup. Think of your working pantry as a mini store in your home where you go shopping from it each week and only bring food items you intend to use into the kitchen that week.

What should I store in my pantry?

Every family has different tastes and preferences regarding food, but certain items should be staples in any pantry. From nutritious grains to proteins and spices, having the right ingredients can make cooking more accessible and enjoyable for everyone in the family. You can create various meals without too much effort.

Here is a starter list of pantry essentials for scratch cooking.

- Flour

- Sugar (White, brown, confectioners, maple syrup, etc.)

- Salt

- Cooking oil

- Baking powder

- Baking soda

- Spices (e.g., cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano)

- Dried herbs (e.g., thyme, rosemary, basil)

- Condiments (e.g., ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise)

- Vinegar (e.g., balsamic, red wine, white wine)

- Broths in liquid, cube, or powdered (e.g., chicken, beef, vegetable)

- Powdered milk

-Vanilla extracts and flavorings

-Rolled oats

-Cocoa powder

What Are the Different Types of Shelving for Building an Optimal Pantry?

1. Wire shelving: This type of shelving is perfect for creating an open pantry that allows you to see quickly and access items.

2. Pull-out shelves for cabinets: These can be a great way to maximize the storage space in a pantry. Pull-out shelves can help to make items more accessible and easier to find, and they can also help to keep things organized and neat. Additionally, pull-out shelves are available in various sizes and styles to fit any pantry's needs.

3. Anything you have available! If you're embarking on your prepping journey, use anything that gets you started on your next grocery shopping trip. The beat-up bookshelf in the corner of your basement will work fine, but you can upgrade it as you grow your supplies.

Other considerations: Proper food storage is essential to ensure the safety and quality of the food eaten. A pantry can be a great place to store food, but it is crucial to consider the physical environment and conditions to maintain optimal shelf life and freshness. By understanding the ideal requirements for food storage in a pantry, you can store your food safely and enjoy its full flavor for longer.

An ideal pantry must be clean, dark, dry, and cold, so find the best place to match those conditions. For most shelf-stable provisions, a pantry's temperature should fall between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Food stored in other areas will result in a shorter shelf life. Always practice the "First in, first out" method to reduce wasted products.

Conclusion: The kitchen is the heart of the home, and having an organized and well-stocked pantry can make all the difference in saving money, eating healthier meals, and reducing stress. A good working pantry allows you to shop smarter, plan and save time in the kitchen. It also helps to reduce clutter and keep your kitchen looking neat and tidy. With a few simple tips, you can create an efficient pantry that will help you save money on prepping, cook healthier meals, and reduce clutter and stress in your kitchen.

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