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Michele Vig, Neat Little Nest Owner + Chief Organizer

Hello! Here I share my passion for creating both beautifully organized + designed spaces. I hope you find some inspiration.


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decanting dry goods in your pantry

Updated: Sep 2, 2021

As a professional organizer, I've organized a lot of pantries. Some of them have been small in size and existed as a couple of shelves in a cupboard, while others have been mid-sized or large walk-in pantries. While there are some basic principles to follow when organizing a pantry, there is not a one-size-fits-all approach.

Decanting is taking contents from store packaging and putting into another storage option.

This post is sponsored by the makers of Ball® home canning products.

One topic that I discuss with every homeowner we work with, when we organize their pantry is what items could be decanted. When it comes to the pantry, decanting is referring to moving food items out of their original packaging and into other (often clear) container. So, if you pour your flour out of a bag into an alternative container, that is an example of decanting.

Some people like to decant nearly everything in their pantry, while others prefer to decant specific items like cereal or pasta. In my own kitchen, I've chosen the "goldilocks" approach to what we decant, which means I decant some, but not all items in our pantry and sometimes it is a try and see method (hence the goldilocks approach).

freshness is the main reason to decant in a pantry
To keep track of expiration dates, I put tape on the bottom and write on it.

Freshness is the top reason to consider decanting in your pantry. Keeping dry goods in air tight containers helps keep air from effecting product. Recently, I upgraded the decanting jars in my pantry to Ball® Storage Latch jars, which have an air-tight seal and come in a variety of sizes.

I decant my baking supplies like flour, sugar, brown sugar and my dry goods like pasta, rice and grains all into the Ball® Storage Latch Jars. I do not decant large bags of snacks like chips or pretzels since my family goes through them quickly so maintaining freshness isn't a concern plus we just don't have a big enough space to decant every bagged snack.

inventory is easier with clear containers

Taking stock of your panty is simplified when you decant because you can visually scan and see how much you have left on hand since the containers are clear. Who doesn't want to streamline the process of preparing a grocery list? As a mother of two, have your kids help with taking inventory since having products in clear containers makes it an easy task.

aesthetics is boosted with the cohesive look
Using a mix of materials in a pantry creates a beautiful balance.

When you use coordinating containers in your pantry, it enhances the overall look of the space. To me, seeing beautiful grains and pastas and other dried goods in a pantry is a form of artful beauty. By removing all of the branded packaging, you significantly cut down on the visual clutter without all of the random labels "shouting" at you.

And not only do the containers look better, they do have some tangible benefits as well. First, when a space has a more intentional and elevated design, it's more likely that you will keep things looking neat and tidy. I selected the Ball® Storage Latch jars for my pantry because I love to use glass when I can. The jars are decorative by nature, while delivering the freshness functionality I need with their air tight lids.

I hope this post helped you consider decanting some of the items in your pantry. When choosing the containers for your pantry, consider storage products that can last the test of time both from a design and daily (or often) use perspective. It is why I'm a fan of Ball® home canning jars because their look is timeless and they are made well and thus durable for years.

Additional articles you might enjoy on this topic include pantry organization: form + function as well as organize your pantry with seven easy tips

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post that is part of an ongoing partnership with the Fresh Preserving Division of Newell Brands. They have provided jars, equipment and monetary compensation. All thoughts and opinions expressed remain my own.

Neat Little Nest,LLC is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to All thoughts and opinions expressed remain my own.

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