Complete Healthy Pantry Makeover in a Fast Weekend
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Cleaning + Organizing + Healthifying Your Pantry all in One Fast Weekend to Totally Liberate Your Mama-Mind.
Hey, Mama…you know how you’re constantly trying to find a healthy snack in your pantry in a pinch, or add in a healthy substitution when cooking dinner and can’t find one in the pantry? Or is your pantry more of the ‘it appears crazy full but really is just full of boxes and chip bags that are either empty or have a few crumbs left’ type? In all honesty, mine is a combination of the two on the regular. Which is why I always fit into my Spring Cleaning and Fall Cleaning an entire weekend to do a complete healthy pantry makeover overhaul.
A ‘Healthy Pantry Makeover’ is basically a tool for you to trash the junk that’s not doing anybody any good + replace the bad with way better stuff + get it all organized so you can actually find it, all at the same time!
It really should be a part of your Self Care, since it implements part minimalizing, part clearing visual clutter and therefore stress, part organization, and part health (cuz healthy food.) All leading to a more liberated Mama-mind.
The ‘healthy’ portion of this clean-out project uses the minimum healthy Rule of 3-6-3 when having anything packaged in the pantry.
It goes like this:
The item must contain MORE than 3 grams of PROTEIN, LESS than 6 grams of SUGAR, and MORE than 3 grams of FIBER. Using that rule will eliminate a lot of the excess sugars that you really don’t need while upping your fiber and protein intake.
Here’s how you get it done:
1.Schedule it in
If your kids are gonna be more of a hindrance than a help, and are little enough to need constant supervision, make sure to enlist help from the hubby/partner or someone to basically babysit so you can be fully committed and not interrupted.
A healthy pantry makeover is not a ‘multi-tasking’ kinda thing.
You’re gonna need some heavy-duty trash bags, a cardboard box, pen and paper to make a list on, cleaners, paper towels or cleaning rags, printed labels and checklist (which you can grab below), and any snacks, breakfast, lunch, etc items that your family will need while you’re working on this project. You don’t want them scrounging around in the middle of your health-seeking masterpiece. So go ahead and set anything aside that they’ll need ahead of time.
3.Empty With Intention
First things first–you’re going to be emptying the pantry–but with intention. Your goal here is 3-fold.
1- Check expiration dates and toss anything that’s past it’s prime. (This is what the heavy-duty trash bags are for.) Also, check out any open boxes and if it’s stale or just looks gross, toss it. ALSO-if you find items you know you and the fam won’t eat, place these in the DONATE box (this is what the cardboard box is for-just make sure none of them are past expiration or opened.)
2- Use the 3-6-3 Rule to see if you should keep it or toss it: MORE than 3 grams of PROTEIN, LESS than 3 grams of SUGAR, and MORE than 3 grams of FIBER. (If you can’t bring yourself to throw out some of these, just put these things on your list to buy more of, and choose an option that falls into these guidelines when you’re shopping.)
3- While you’re emptying, you’ll be able to see things you need more of right off the bat. Go ahead and get your list going for new things you need to stock your pantry with.
4. Clean Shelves
While everything’s out of the pantry, go ahead and get your cleaners and towels and wipe down all the shelves and baskets, etc inside the pantry. Probably not a bad idea to wipe down all door handles, the doors, and sweep/mop the floor in there. The floor tends to be pretty neglected in there, poor thing.
5.Designate Areas Per Use or Zone
If you don’t do this already, you’ll find it really helpful and time-saving to group things by use, and choose a ‘zone’ for it to occupy. For example, all the breakfast stuff on one shelf, all the baking stuff grouped together, canned fruit on one side of the canned foods, but beans and soups on the other side, etc. It just makes it way easier to find things.
I even use my label maker to label shelves where things go so there’s no confusion. At this point we only have one family member that can’t read, so almost nobody has an excuse to just throw things in there all willy-nilly and mess up my system. (This is the label maker I use and love!)
Another tip is to have bins for certain things you either buy lots of (like granola bars or fruit pouches.) I like to empty them out of boxes when putting up groceries so I can always tell if we need more before I shop.
We also have bins for school lunches and for snacks. That way kids know to just go grab a thing from those bins to finish packing their lunches in the morning, or to find a snack there after school. (We also use this method in the fridge.)
6. Replace Items
So at this point all you have to do is put everything back up all nice and orderly in its proper place. At this point you may find that you want to get more bins or new bins. Just put it on your list, and finish when you’ve got them in hand.
If there was anything in your cardboard box, go ahead and donate those items to the local food bank. You can find your nearest one by clicking through here and putting in your zip code.
Go ahead and get your toss bag in your trash can or dumpster and out of the house!
Go shop for the things you were out of, or need to replace with more healthy alternatives, and get them put in their new proper places. 😉
10. Explain Your System
We have friends whose husband always says while chuckling that he frequently throws his hands up when supposedly trying to help his wife with household stuff and yells, “I don’t know your system!” And then walks away. We always crack up at it, and then later I give my hubby the evil eye with a, “Nuh uh, don’t try to pull that BS with me.”
In all seriousness, your family should respect the hard work you put into cleaning, organizing, and making sure your pantry isn’t full of total junk. Show them where everything goes, and point out the labels if you added those. Don’t give them an excuse to just clutter up that gorgeous clean pantry again!
And if you didn’t get enough cleaning, organizing, and health-ifying your food situation, give the fridge a go in the SAME EXACT ORDER, my friend!
Grab your Healthy Pantry Makeover Organization Pack + get access to the whole STELLA NADENE Resource Vault! ?
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