A pantry is ideal for storing food and other kitchen essentials and provides additional space to stock up when non-perishables are on sale. Cleverly organized kitchen pantry cabinets provide a practical way to maximize the storage space in any kitchen.
Here are a few kitchen pantry ideas–walk-in, reach-in, butler’s pantry–plus some of our pantry cabinet favorites for smaller kitchens. You can use these organizational ideas in any kitchen and work them into any budget.
Four kitchen pantry ideas that work in any kitchen
A walk-in pantry is ideal for maximizing storage. If you’re tight on kitchen space but have room in your garage or basement, you can add a walk-in pantry to store non-perishables out of sight.
You can convert any small closet into a walk-in pantry. The key to making it work is not the size but how you organize it—store items in similar-looking containers with clearly printed labels to complete the ultra-clean look. Pull-out shelves, slide-out wire racks, and drawers with or without peg systems can help keep containers in their place but are easy to find and use.
A built-in pantry is your best option if you have plenty of room in your kitchen. A built-in pantry is easy to install and can add an elegant touch to your kitchen. One option is an all-in-one unit with a pantry cabinet and a small countertop. Be sure your built-in pantry is well-lit so you can find items quickly.
Butler’s pantries are popular among homeowners who want a sophisticated look for their kitchen. A butler’s pantry usually features a large built-in cabinet with a hinged center door so you can keep your most-used items in sight. Inside the butler’s pantry, you can install cabinets with slide-outs, pull-outs, drawers, or shelves with doors to keep it organized and elegant. These large built-in pantries take up a lot of space, so they are not necessarily the best option if your kitchen layout is limited.
Image credit: Dwelling Design https://www.houzz.com/hznb/projects/windward-ln-remodel-pj-vj~725329
Freestanding pantry cabinets can be installed above, below, or in place of your kitchen cabinets, depending on your particular layout and need for more storage. These work best in kitchens with high ceilings or small kitchens less than 10’x10’.
The door finish for a freestanding pantry storage cabinet can be a sleek slab door for a modern look, contemporary with the Shaker-style clean door frame, or a more traditional treatment with overlay and beveling details. Inside the pantry cabinet, you can opt for open shelving, slide-out cabinets, pull-out drawers, or a combination to maximize your storage space.
Eight pantry cabinet ideas to try in your kitchen
There are a variety of cabinet pantry designs to suit any kitchen style and space. Here are a few you can use for inspiration.
1) Modern kitchen pantry cabinet with drawers
This modern white pantry cabinet wall has a simple, stylish look. Thin chrome handles and white panel cabinets contrast nicely with black ceramic floors. It is divided into three-part drawers and regular inner shelves.
2) Minimalist modern kitchen with storage drawers
This pull-out storage cabinet has a simple and minimalistic style. White floors, walls, and cabinetry add a fresh and bright look reflecting the daylight.
3) White flat-panel cabinets with wine cellar
Check out the simple and minimalistic design for this contemporary kitchen pantry cabinet. Look at the tiny “window as a backsplash” for this butler’s pantry! The bright and fresh look is added with the help of white and light brown wood colors. Roll-out wine racks provide visibility for stored wine.
4) A cottage kitchen with a white pantry cabinet
Beige travertine floors and white stone walls are accented with touches of wood. This pantry features space-saving ideas like handleless drawers and small shelves on the inner face of the cabinet closet.
5) Transitional kitchen with pull-out white pantry cabinet
This transitional white kitchen includes many easy-to-use storage options. Drawers store small items, and the pull-out adds more storage space. White Shaker-style cabinets and medium-toned wood floors contrast beautifully, and the light wood cabinet interiors echo the floor.
6) White cabinets with stainless steel appliances
This traditional kitchen features ample storage near the refrigerator, making it a streamlined task to unload and store groceries and get ready to cook.
7) White Shaker-style cabinets with wood drawers
These bright white Shaker-style cabinets contrast beautifully with black handles. This pantry cabinet features wooden roll-outs that provide easy access from the front to the very back. The top compartment can store larger items, keeping them tidy and out of the way.
8) Modern kitchen cabinets with plenty of storage
These pantry cabinets are tall and narrow but still provide plenty of storage. White pull-out cabinets make it easy to reach even the back sections. This pantry has a modern, minimalistic look and provides plenty of storage space.
Storage Ideas for Every Kitchen Space
Consider vertical storage to maximize storage possibilities if you have limited kitchen space. Vertical storage includes storage beneath your kitchen cabinets, wall-mounted hanging storage, and under-cabinet storage. If you have extra floor space, install a wall-mounted pantry rack or a freestanding pantry.
Shop for a kitchen pantry that has a large capacity and doors and drawers that are easy to open and close. Look for quality materials and hardware that won’t scratch or rust.
Good options include:
- A built-in pantry with a separate cabinet below to store oversized items like large bags of flour or sugar
- A butler’s pantry with a hinged center door for easy access
- A combination pantry with a separate cabinet below for storing non-food items
- A wall-mounted pantry with a rack that can be hung either vertically or horizontally. This type of pantry can free up floor space and store a variety of kitchen items.
- A built-in freestanding pantry anchored to the wall
- A pantry designed with under-cabinet storage to hold small appliances like coffee makers, toasters, and other kitchen gadgets
Frequently asked questions about kitchen pantry cabinets
What is the standard pantry size?
A standard walk-in pantry is 5×5 feet, while a reach-in pantry is typically 5×2 feet. Shelves range in depth from 16–20 inches. Slide-out shelves help keep stored items accessible.
Can I make my own pantry?
You can create pantry storage in even the smallest kitchen. A closet, a bookshelf, and even open-wall shelving can be repurposed into a pantry. Unused corners or spaces near the kitchen, like mudrooms, hallways, or space under the stairs, can contain shelving or drawers for dried goods, canned food, and less-frequently used appliances.
What should you store on the top shelf of a pantry?
Store lighter items and those you infrequently use for special occasions on the top shelf. These might include paper plates, cookie cutters, and party supplies kept up and away to maximize the efficiency of your day-to-day storage space. Use baskets or bins for easy access.
How do you organize a deep corner pantry?
Add a lazy susan, cloud pull-out, tiered pull-out racks, or drawers to a deep-corner pantry cabinet. These simple organizational tools allow you to access anything in your corner pantry easily and quickly.
What’s the ideal spacing for pantry shelving?
The bottom shelves, used for heavy items, should be 16-18 inches deep and about 18-24 inches apart. Eye-level shelves should be 12-14 inches deep and spaced 14-16 inches apart to fit items like cereal boxes and canisters. Shelves for spices and cans need no more than 6 inches front to back. When planning for items you commonly store, add 2 inches of vertical space so you can tip or slide things in and out easily.
Which cabinets are best for a pantry?
Simply Kitchens’ ready-to-assemble (RTA) cabinets are the perfect option for a kitchen pantry because they are both affordable and easy to customize. We also offer a wide selection of convenient cabinet organizers to fit inside RTA cabinets.
Should pantry cabinets match kitchen cabinets?
We recommend that you keep a consistent look for kitchen and pantry cabinets. Of course, mixing and matching is fine, but using the same cabinets throughout will create an appealing uniformity that adds value when it comes time to sell.
Find the perfect storage solution for your kitchen
At Simply Kitchens, find the design help you need to create a kitchen pantry cabinet that suits your needs perfectly. Work with one of our professional designers at no charge; you’ll find it a breeze to design your new pantry. Our designers want you to have the best kitchen pantry possible for your budget and will help you select a style that works with your entire home. Start designing today!