Now more than ever, home is where many of us are seeking refuge and solace in light of the novel coronavirus. This is a tough time, but we’re here for you—whether it’s a new pantry recipe or a useful tip for your kitchen, here are some ideas to make things run a little more smoothly for you and your loved ones.
With the world being the way it is right now, most people (myself included) find themselves having overstocked on canned food. Although is there such a thing? I’ve discovered you can make a surprisingly delicious chili with canned tomatoes and beans, an onion, and a few chicken breasts, but that’s a story for another day.
If you’ve found yourself with more canned goods than usual, you might be struggling to find a place to store them all. While stacking is one obvious solution, one wrong move and you end up dodging a tower of toppling cans—and trust me, they seriously hurt if they catch your toe.
Instead of risking a pantry avalanche, we’d recommend trying one of these can storage hacks instead. A lot of them can be achieved using items you have lying around the house—like soda boxes and wire baskets—and there are also a few fun DIY projects in there, in case you need something to keep your hands busy.
How smart is this? We’re absolutely obsessed with this DIY can dispenser—it’s the perfect solution to mount in your pantry or garage. It’s fairly easy and affordable to make, thanks to the instructions provided by Ana White, and we love that the clear glass front lets you see exactly what’s inside.
If you have adjustable wire shelves in your pantry, you’ve got to try this cool hack. All you do is flip the shelves over so the little lip is facing up, then adjust the brackets or pegs so each shelf slants downward. BAM! A super-simple can dispenser.
Not big on DIY? No worries. There are plenty of ways you can store cans without breaking out the toolkit. For instance, check out these neat stackable wire baskets—they’re the perfect size to store cans, and they slip right into your existing cupboards or pantry. There are also super-affordable can racks that you can buy.
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Wait, don’t recycle those soda boxes just yet! These long, skinny boxes are the perfect size to store soup and canned vegetables. All you have to do is cover soda boxes in pretty paper, and voila—they become lovely upcycled can dispensers. Extra points if you add cute labels to each box to keep things organized.
It’s no secret that we love a good sneaky sliding pantry, and these skinny storage solutions are the perfect place to store your cans. The slim shelves are an ideal width for canned goods, and they’ll let you see everything with one glance. You can purchase a pre-made pull-out pantry to slide into the gap beside your fridge, or if you’re handy, it could be a fun DIY project—check out this tutorial from Classy Clutter for guidance.
Sometimes you just have to keep things simple, and there’s no easier way to organize your canned goods than with a classic tiered-shelf organizer. These inexpensive products look like a set of stairs, and they allow you to stagger cans so you can see what’s going on in the back. Just make sure to get one that’s wide enough for bigger cans—certain organizers are designed for spices, and their steps might be too skinny.
Cleaning out your office? Hold onto those old magazine holders—they’re the Holy Grail of pantry organization! (If you don’t have any, keep an eye out at the Dollar Store—you can usually score them for cheap.) Ones that are wide enough can be used to store canned goods, but we’ve also seen them used to hold produce like onions and potatoes, paper goods like napkins, or reusable water bottles.
The far corners of pantries or kitchen cabinets often become no-man’s-land, filling up with forgotten ingredients. You can make use of this underappreciated space with oversized lazy susans, which you can load up with all you must-have canned goods. You can get 18-inch lazy susans from the store, but if you need something bigger, you can easily make your own—all you really need is a set of lazy susan bearings.
Which clever storage idea is your favorite? Let us know below!
This article originally appeared in January 2019. We’re re-running it because we are always looking for clever ways to store our canned goods.