Pantry Goals

10 Small Pantries Big on Smart Storage Solutions

Because great things come in small packages.

January 15, 2019
Photo by Mark Weinberg

Welcome to Pantry Goals, your destination for all the practical tips and need-to-know tricks to get your space in tip-top shape (and keep it that way).

If you look up #PantryGoals on Instagram, you’ll see dozens of pictures of impeccably organized walk-in pantries—but besides celebrities, who actually has a pantry that big? Most of us are working with a much smaller food storage space, which means we have to get crafty when it comes to organization.

To give you both the motivation and means to tidy up your kitchen, we found some amazing small-space pantries that provide ingenious storage solutions. With these tricks up your sleeve, you’ll never lament about not having enough room again.

Upgrade Deep Cabinets

If you have deep, narrow cabinets, you know that things tend to get lost in the way back. To keep all your pantry essentials accessible, consider installing slide-out shelves, which will make it infinitely easier to reach items in the back.

Build a Behind-the-Door Organizer

Even if you don’t have a designated pantry, you can create extra food storage space with this behind-the-door organizer—it has space for spices, snacks, plastic bags, and more. The best part is you simply put it on the back of a door, whether it’s to a closet, your garage, or wherever you have available space.

Tuck Away a Slide-Out Pantry

If you have a few inches of space beside your fridge, you have enough room to slip in one of these skinny slide-out pantries. Sure, you can only store narrow items on them, but they’re an easy and affordable way to make the most of every inch.

Reimagine Freestanding Pantry Space

No built-in? No worries. This freestanding pantry is an epic IKEA hack if there ever was one. We love the idea of using a Billy bookcase with glass doors as a stand-in pantry, and of course, who can resist those impeccably organized containers?

Turn Cabinets Into Mini Pantries

Aren’t cabinets just miniature pantries? Give your cabinets an upgrade by organizing them with baskets and clear containers. It will cut down on the mess and make it easier for you to see what’s in there.

Share Unused Space

How awesome is this idea? This IGer had space to spare in her little laundry room, so she installed several shelves to turn part of the area into a makeshift pantry. Perfect for storing overflow from the kitchen.

Make the Most of Every Inch

This cabinet is a perfect example of how to use every inch of space in your space-deprived kitchen. There are small spice racks on the back of each door, as well as extra vertical cubbies for storing baking sheets, platters, and more.

Create a Hidden Spice Rack

Here’s another slide-out gem, designed specifically for spices. It should come as no surprise that this hidden spice rack was the brainchild of a tiny house dweller—everyone knows they have the best storage hacks!

Hide a Pantry Under the Stairs

Harry Potter got his humble beginnings in a cabinet under the stairs, and now your food essentials can live there, too. Honestly, that space is typically just wasted, so why not transform it into your very own pantry? We sense a DIY in your future.

Embrace Stacking Bins

You can fit twice as much stuff in your limited storage space when you use stacking bins. They’re perfect for cans, snacks, and even produce that like cool, dark places (hello, potatoes). Oh, and don’t forget to break out your label maker to give every bin a name tag.

What's your favorite small pantry storage solution? Let us know below!

Join the Conversation

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Delanie Anne Miller
    Delanie Anne Miller
  • Abigail Hoppen Albers
    Abigail Hoppen Albers
  • Kathryn
  • ELLE
  • Lydia Robins Hendrix
    Lydia Robins Hendrix
Freelance writer, product tester & baking enthusiast.


Delanie A. January 25, 2019
Most of these are clever, but a laundry/pantry combo?!?
Abigail H. January 25, 2019
But where can I buy the canisters in the cover photo? They're adorable!
Lydia R. January 28, 2019
Wondering the same - kind of sad when you click on the article link for the original image and those products aren't even mentioned!
Kathryn January 15, 2019
Growing up our pantry was under the stairs and referred to as "Harry Potter's Cupboard" so I love that one- Harry would have never have starved living in our cupboard! Would be awesome if you could also do an article for those of us who are renting and unable to renovate the tiny kitchens we have. We already use some of the ideas in this article but I would love some more renters hacks!
ELLE January 15, 2019
Some of us dinosaurs don't subscribe to the likes of Facebook, Instagram, etc. It would be nice if Food52 could add sources other than these of the products mentioned in an article like this.
Kathryn January 15, 2019
you can still view Instagram posts without logging in but I feel you- FB doesn't allow this.