One of the areas that families have a lot of control of their budget is food costs. Your mortgage is set in stone, that utility bill is set by the company, but your food bill is well under your control.
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One of the best ways to maximize your food bill is by keeping an organized pantry. Being able to easily see what’s in your pantry and keep it well stocked makes meal prep easier and reduces or eliminates the need for spur of the moment take out.
An organized pantry has the following components:
components of a pantry
1. Appropriate infrastructure
Your pantry should make great use of its real estate. From lighting to shelving – the more, the better.
2. Visible, stackable containers
Your pantry will be more efficient with clear containers. Keeping things in their boxes can make it hard to see when the contents are running low. Visible containers that stack and help keep track of contents make it easy to assess what you need when you grocery shop.
3. Wide variety of contents
A key to meal planning is variety. Storing up on items that are canned, dried, or have a longer shelf life makes it possible to create varied meals so families don’t get bored with the same ol’ thing. From pasta to beans to canned fruits and veggies, a well-stocked pantry makes making soups, stews, and casseroles simple.
4. Easy access
If your kids take their lunches to school, the pantry is a home base for lunch prep. Having bins or baskets full of parent-approved lunch items makes opening that sack or box a happier time. Encourage kids to be a part of their lunch planning by making their own lunches with a variety of food in the pantry.
Note: Depending on the size of your pantry, you can add features that enhance the functionality. A chalkboard to keep a list of items as they run out. Sacks for lunches or other items kids need to make their lunches all in one spot. Your family’s specific needs can dictate what items are best stored in your pantry.
Having a pantry that is organized and well-stocked can make meal planning easier and save you money in your food budget, plus the aesthetic is a bright spot in your home. Your family can enjoy healthier meals and take out can be saved for special occasions rather than emergencies.