Kitchen Pantry Makeover

When we downsized 3 years ago, we felt the house had good bones on the most part. I say “on the most part” because the kitchen didn’t have a pantry in the kitchen, but instead there was was what I would have considered a hall closet which was located inside what we are calling the living room. It’s probably because the space we are using as a living room was separated into a small living room and formal dining room thus a closet as a pantry could be considered off the formal dining room.

We have since added a small pantry inside the kitchen in the breakfast nook area but it wasn’t big enough to provide much storage. Back in November I started researching on YouTube and Pinterest what others have done to organize their pantry. I began visiting Dollar Tree, thrift shops, 99 Cent Stores, Tuesday Morning and picking up containers to create general categories of items. I also purchased some chalkboard stickers and tags for labeling.

In January my husband went away for a few days which was the perfect time to pull everything out, go through items and get rid of anything with an expired date.

Here is where I started.


This is where I ended up. The empty spot is where my Instant Pot now lives.

Containers Labels: Bags, Kitchens Accessories, Seasonings, Snacks, Nuts and Seeds, Produce, Bags, Grains, Beans, Extra, and Paper Towels


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It’s now been 5 months since I did this project and I only wish I had done this project years ago because….

  • my cupboards have consistently remained organized
  • seeing what I have on hand or need to replenish is easy
  • allows my husband ease in finding items or putting them away
  • the large tub for Extras provides a sealed space to store items that come in large bags from Costco, etc.
  • placing measuring cups and directions with storage containers for rice and quinoa expedite cooking
  • storing larger items that aren’t used often in the back of deeper shelves is a good use of these space. The front part of the shelf can be used for what is needed most often.
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Instant Pot Recipe Sources

I often get asked where I find my recipes for the The Instant Pot.  In fact my friend, Ellen, asked me a few minutes ago.  It’s been on my list to post so thanks Ellen for the motivation.  For someone who was timid about using the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker over a year ago and sat 20 feet away while I did the water test, it now has a permanent place on my kitchen counter.  I started with the brown rice, quinoa and steel oats recipes from the cookbook that came with the appliance. Soon I wanted a little more and begin branching out into blogs which then led me to some amazing cookbooks.  There are times I’ll take two recipes from different sources and tweak it to my palate.  

Here are two of my favorite instant pot cookbooks.  Also be sure to check out their websites – there is a lot of valuable information and recipes. 

Cookbooks

Instant Loss

This Old Gal’s Pressure Cooker Cookbook

Websites

This Old Gal

Instant Loss

Facebook Closed Groups 

Instant Pot Community

Instant Loss

Affiliate logs are used to help offset the cost of Deliciously Inspired.

Appliances are only as good as the recipes going into them.  Pictured below is Chicken Tortilla Soup from the Instant Loss Cookbook.  This recipe is quick and delicious because everything goes into the pot  at once and 13-15 minutes later it is done.  I am a big fan of homecoming because unlike going out to eat – the cook is in control of what ingredients and how much of those ingredients go in.

 

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Small Linen Closet Makeover

It’s been almost 3 years since we downsized our home.  The list of home projects is becoming smaller but there are still a few to be tackled.  Two on this list are to organize our small hallway linen closet and also our kitchen pantry.

I’m happy to say that over the holidays, I accomplished the linen closet with the help of Dollar Tree.  I bought an assortment of different storage containers, watched a couple of YouTube videos and pulled a set of chalkboard tags I’ve had for a couple of years and set to work.

Here were some of the steps I utilized.

  1. Choose a color scheme to act as my guide:  blue, brown, white, gray and black.  
  2. Sort through towels.  I kept 8 bath for the closet because there were already two towels in each of the bathrooms.  I kept 5 wash clothes and 5 hand towels.  The rest were donated.
  3. Sort through over-the-counter and prescription drugs and dispose of them by town/city guidelines.  Create storage container with drawers for small items and a tiered storage area for larger supplements.  (I have a storage box that holds 30 days of my prescription and supplements.  This is in one of the drawers which makes a lot more sense from where it used to sit – on top of my sugar container with my baking supplies.)
  4. Use a container for toilet paper so we don’t have to retrieve from garage.
  5. Roll up beach towels and placed in a container on the floor.
  6. Create a cleaning container.
  7. Create two more storage containers of cleaning supplies.
  8. Create a storage area for lightbulbs.
  9. Create a storage container for batteries.
  10. The blankets on the left side of the top shelf were placed in pillow cases and tied off with ribbon which gave a cleaner look.

I took a side by side picture as I made progress – what a transformation and encouragement to keep on going.

Here is the finished project.  I couldn’t be happier with it.

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