Clearing the decks in your pantry on a regular basis will give you more storage space for better pantry organisation and fresher cooking ingredients. Sealed containers and proper storage of open packets are the best way to declutter pantry mess and will ward off dreaded pantry moths.
Even if you’re planning a renovation that includes the perfect butler’s pantry, here’s what to throw away right now:
1. Stale nuts
You know the ones – all the boring nuts that are left behind after everyone picks out their favourites. Bin them and resolve to make up your own mix next time.
2. Old herbs and spices
Check expiry dates as dried herbs and spices lose their pungency over time. Any spices you use for a one-off recipe that are unlikely to be reused should also be discarded.
3. Open packs of biscuits and crackers
These will become stale after just one day. To retain freshness, always store biscuits and crackers in sealed plastic containers or your fridge immediately after opening.
4. Half-used packets of pasta
Are a magnet for pantry moths! Store the remaining pasta in a jar or sealed plastic container as soon as you open a packet.
5. Gourmet sauces, fancy bottles of vinegar and flavoured oils
That you don’t use. Even if they’re beautifully bottled… unless they earn their keep on the shelf, bin them!
6. Any out-of-date items
Check for cereal boxes, cordial bottles, slow-cooker sauces, and old coconut lurking in the recesses and corners of your pantry.
7. Tins with visible signs of age
..have been there for an age! Whilst some canned good can safely outlast their suggested use-by date, don’t hang on to things for months if you’re simply not going to use them. Check for damage to dubious cans or when in doubt, throw it out.
Wipe shelves as you go and stock take any items that are getting low.