The Plan to Eat Podcast

#21: Food Storage - Clean Out and Organize Your Cupboards!

June 29, 2022 Plan to Eat Season 1 Episode 21
The Plan to Eat Podcast
#21: Food Storage - Clean Out and Organize Your Cupboards!
Show Notes Transcript

Join us for a conversation about organizing your food storage! We went through our own cupboards to clean out and organize the dry goods we keep on hand. We documented our processes and share them with you (and each other) in this episode. We hope you're inspired to do a little cupboard clean out of your own!

Find the recipes Riley and Roni talk about in this episode:

Beef and Cauliflower Taco Skillet
Pineapple Mango Salsa

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[00:00:00] 

I'm Riley and I'm Roni. And this is the plan to eat podcast, where we have conversations about meal planning, food, and wellness. To help you answer the question what's for dinner.

Riley: Hello, and welcome to the Plan to Eat podcast today. Roni and I are discussing food storage, like the kind of food storage that you have at home in your cupboards, in your pantry, um, and how to get those organized.

Roni: Yeah, so Riley and I, in preparation for this episode, uh, went through our cupboards, went through our app. Food storage and pantries and cleaned things out. So we actually are kind of doing this episode a little blind, just so you guys know, uh, most of the time when we record our podcasts, we have a little bit more structure to this.

So we're hoping that this goes well, but we kind of want it to surprise each other with the things that we came up with for our food storage methods, for our pantry clean-out methods. Um, and so we hope to you know, maybe share tips and tricks with each [00:01:00] other that you guys will also find helpful.

Riley: so to get started. Roni, why don't you tell us a little bit about your kitchen setup, how much food storage you have and what you chose to organize? 

Roni: Yeah. So this is definitely something that's different for both me and Riley. So I live in a very small house. I live in 750 square feet, which means that my kitchen is. No bigger than 200 square feet. I don't, I don't actually know the dimensions on my kitchen, but very small. And so I do not have very much food storage at all.

So I have basically two cupboards that are my quote unquote pantry cupboards. And then I have one smaller cupboard. That's like my spice cupboard. So I have very limited storage space. We do not keep very much food on hand, just like simply for this reason that we don't have a whole lot of food, uh, places to store our food.

We don't have just like one big. You know, uh, you know, two drawer pantry, or we don't have like a closet basically to put food. So I have like six shelves that can hold some food. And then [00:02:00] I have one smaller little cabinet that holds our spices. Um, obviously I have like a refrigerator and a freezer and all of those things, but we mostly focused on doing the dry storage for this podcast.

Um, so I basically chose to. Organize those things. So I organize my spice cabinet. I organized all of our like dry goods, which includes like box things, cans, good coffee, like whatever those snacks and that kind of stuff. Um, and yeah, it didn't take me a whole lot of time because I don't have very much space.

Riley: I think that's totally okay. Roni, because it's, there's so many people who have small kitchens, like you, maybe even less food storage than you have, or maybe they're living in a small apartment, um, or even people who are in RVs or something along those lines. Um, so I think this will definitely connect.

Uh, so my kitchen is a bit different. I have. I do not have like a walk-in pantry, which you know, is like, probably would be so cool. Um, but I have like [00:03:00] one little closet with like a little sliding door, with a few shelves. And then I have another shelf in another closet, which is not a pantry or anything like that.

It's just kind of become my overflow because we needed a place for all of our canned goods to go. We have a two year old and she needed like a snack shelf. And so that took over some of our storage shelf. It just needed to all be in one spot and like more organized. And, um, me and my before and after photos will show you exactly what I'm talking about, but it was so bad, just like stuff shoved everywhere.

Like Roni. I have like a small cabinet where I put my baking stuff. So I did not organize that. I also did not organize my spices, but I did organize like where I keep like my dry goods and my canned goods, um, snacks and things along like along those lines. And it is a huge change from what it was. Cause it was a mess. 

Roni: Well, that's great I'm sure that. 

Riley: It does. It does feel really good. You know, [00:04:00] we talk a little bit about this. Um, just that how meal planning can give you this sense of just like mental freedom or like mental space, like clarity, you know, because you've done the task that's bothering you. After cleaning out this pantry, every, I just like want to open it and look at it.

Like that's like, it brings me joy to open it and be like, oh my goodness, everything is organized. Like, I'm not about to cook. I don't need to pull anything out of there. I just want to look at it. And cause it brings me joy that it's clean. So it has brought me the similar sense of like mental, like freedom. That meal planning brings me.

Roni: I love that. That makes me.

happy for you. I actually felt really similarly actually, when I finished, I didn't, I forgot to take before and after pictures of my one cabinet, but I took before and after pictures of my, uh, one of the cabinets and then also my spice cabinet. But even then afterwards, I was.

I'm really excited. I kept opening my cabinets to look at them and, uh, I almost like called my husband into the [00:05:00] room to be like, come and check this out. But I was kind of like, I don't think he probably cares as much as I do. 

Riley: Uh, my husband was at work when I did mine and I sent him pictures and his response was, I love you so much.

Roni: Oh, that's sweet. 

Riley: my husband gets, um, he just really loves clean and organization like that. If that's a love language, it's his. And so when I sent him those pictures of the before and after, he definitely like spoke to with heart.

Roni: oh, I love that. how did you, uh, organize. Your okay. What, what was your process for this organization? Because I had a specific process kind of that I was using when I was doing this, but I want to hear about. 

Riley: Yep. So, I will say I went into it with not a lot of process in mind. I just knew everything had to come out so it could go back in organized. So the first thing I did is I just pulled everything out and I piled it all on my kitchen. [00:06:00] And I organized it on the counter after I pulled it all out, I organized it by like what it was.

So, you know, my cans of salsa and my cans and marinara sauce or jars, like I've just put all those together in my pasta altogether. And, you know, like my baking mixes right here together and, just tried to group it by, like, these are going to go together when I put them back in the pantry. And then.

So pulling it all out, that was really important. And then just cleaning off all the shelves and then trying to decide, okay, what's going to go on the top shelf. What's going to go on the bottom shelf and kind of like working my way through and then putting it all back in, um, some of the processes.

Looking at dates and just throwing away stuff that was either half used and opened, you know, six months ago or things that had already expired. And just throwing them away. Uh, we haven't used them. We're likely not gonna use them. It's been a long time. And then, so getting rid of that kind of stuff, one note I'll make that maybe it doesn't fit exactly right here, but the note I want to make is [00:07:00] only start this project.

If you have adequate time to complete it, because. It's going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better. I don't know. I don't know if you've experienced that Roni, but I pulled everything out and I was a bit overwhelmed. I was like, oh my goodness, I'm glad I have two hours because if you're trying to go somewhere, this is not a 15 minute job.

Um, it was not a 15 minute job for me. And so it was definitely one of those experiences where if you've got a lot of work. Make sure you got the time to do it, but I was a bit overwhelmed once I pulled it all out because I realized that I had quite the under, like quite the mess to put back in order.

Roni: Yeah.

I think what I, uh, wanted to mention kind of related to that is that like, this is definitely something to plan to do, like before you've done your weekly or monthly meal planning. And before you go grocery shopping, like that was kind of the, the thing that I. That was like, my very [00:08:00] first thought of this was like, I need to go, I need a meal plan and I needed to go shopping today, but I really need to do this before I go and do that stuff so that I can either replenish the things that I'm going to throw out because they ever expired or whatever.

And so that I don't buy things that are. Hidden in the back part of my shelves. Um, I actually didn't have too many things that were hidden in the back part of my shelves that I liked didn't need to buy, but it was also a good reminder of like, oh, we have, um, you know, like we had pizza sauce and we have these like cans of beans and stuff.

And so then I was able to make my meal plan and use up some of those things, um, that we have. They're probably not going to go bad anytime soon. But, you know, if you listen to our budgeting podcast, it's kind of that idea of like go through your house and find the things that you have, and it's going to save your grocery budget for that week.

And so then I was kind of able to, like I said, plan around those things and save a little bit of money at the grocery store, just because I was like, why not use this stuff in the recipes for this week? 

Riley: Totally. [00:09:00] Similarly, I looked at things and I thought, oh yeah, I want to make this like, oh, I want to make, oh, I'm I can incorporate that. Like, I was inspired to meal plan by what I found. And so, so totally like you it's like do it before you've done your meal plan because it can be a really cheap week at the store because you had 50% of what you needed already.

Yeah, highly recommend doing that and then using it up instead of wasting it, if you needed to throw it away, if it was like, if it was going to expire soon, like you could go ahead and use it up. Um, but I was definitely inspired to make different kinds of meals, uh, by what I found.

Roni: Yeah, I would agree. I actually felt the same way about, uh, food that I found.

kind of gave me, like I found a jar of pesto and I was like, Hmm, I had no idea I had this jar pesto, but now let's use it this week. 

Riley: totally. Uh, so what was your process? Tell us kinda how you went about like the getting started aspect of it.

Roni: Yeah. So I think similar to you, I took everything out of my cupboards and put It on my counter. And then I actually sorted my [00:10:00] things into like, what can I use this week at my meal plan? What's something that needs to get trashed because. Expired or honestly, I had some things in my cupboards that I was like, this is actually something we're never going to eat.

I don't really know where it came from. Um, I'm going to trash it. And then I had my list and then I had my section of things that are like, these are the things that need to kind of get organized. And the things that needed to get organized were the things that either went on, like the top shelf or kind of in like the back of the shelves, because they weren't things that I was going to use immediately.

So I kind of like organized. Things that can get organized, get pushed to the back. And then the stuff that's going to get used will then either be on the bottom shelf or we'll just kind of be in the front so that I can access it easier. And it's a little bit of a reminder of like, oh yes, I'm going to use this thing this week.

So I kind of like segmented my things into different piles.

Riley: It makes me think of MacKenzie Koppa when we interviewed her, because she organizes her food storage by a meal. So like she puts her groceries away. Like these five things go [00:11:00] together to make that meal. That's what you're, that's what you're making me think of. It's like, I'm going to use this first, so I'm going to put it here.

Um, I didn't do mine that way, so it's really interesting to hear you do it.

Roni: Yeah. I mean, I also, I have my shelves kind of organized, like these two shelves are like my baking things. This shelf is where all of the canned goods goes, canned goods go. Um, and then like this shelf is where, you know, Uh, pasta or box goods or whatever goes like I already have like a general organization for the different shelves.

Um, but it. was, this was, the reorganization was a little bit more about the like first in, uh, for last in first out, whatever that kind of, whatever that phrase is. Yeah. 

Riley: FIFO. Yeah. 

Roni: Yeah. Yeah. 

Riley: So one of the things that I chose to do when I was reloading my cabinet was make sure this sounds so ridiculously simple, but make sure everything's facing. So that I can read the label. Like I have a couple of boxes of like simple mills, like baking mixes. And on one [00:12:00] side, the top says the name.

And on the other side, it has like an ingredient label or something. And it doesn't say the name. So when I'm actually going to look for the one that I want to make. I have to flip them around or whatever, like that sounds like it's just, you know, just extra time. Right. And so putting everything in where I could see the label of what the name was like, it saves me time later.

Cause I'm having to dig around. It saves my organization because I'm not having to dig around and I can just grab the thing I need really quickly. Um, so I, it sounds ridiculous, but yeah, labels out.

Roni: Yeah. I think one of the obvious things that I also did is that once I had everything off of a shelf, I then wiped my shelf off. I don't that's, that's definitely something that my mother would be proud of me for doing. Uh, and it was, it was necessary to, because I think there was like some honey or something that was actually on one of the shelves that I was like, how did I not notice that this had spilt. 

Riley: Oh, no, I hate when that kind of thing happens. [00:13:00] Yeah. I had put something away that like was like in a bag and I like, I guess I just rolled the top down or something and it got like, moved like over and then it tilted and it had some of it had spilled. So I even vacuumed out some of my little shelves and then wiped them out too.

So definitely, definitely helpful.

Roni: So what were some of the things I'm just thinking about? Like in my scenario, where I thought about like, what are, what am I going to use and what could I trash? Like, what were some of the things that you notice were expired in your cupboards? 

Riley: So one of the things that I found to throw away, um, was a couple of half opened pasta boxes. And some of the reason why I actually threw this away is not that they were necessarily expired, but because I'm now gluten-free. Um, and so some of those open pasta boxes were not gluten-free pasta. And we just, at this point, we don't eat that at our house anymore, just because I'm not making two meals for people here making one meal.

So like my family eats gluten-free with me. They have other items that are not gluten free, but that's one of those things that I'm not. Two [00:14:00] batches of, um, and so some of the things I got rid of was like half opened boxes of like regular pasta. What did you get rid of?

Roni: Well, I had some loose leaf. In my cupboards that I think is that I think was like three years old. It was definitely pre 2020 that I bought that loose leaf tea. And so like, if, if you're not, if you don't know, as a listener, a loose leaf tea definitely goes bad. It loses like its potency and its flavor and all that kind of stuff.

And I had him in like those little jars that are like, I don't know. I don't know how you describe it. It's like a glass jar that has like a little like snap, top lid with a gasket. Um, so like I had them in there for, you know, like flavor saving am, but like when they're three years old, there's just no point to keep those.

And then I also had some nuts. Like some mixed nuts that were pushed in the back that were, they weren't expired, but, um, I've gotten sick before actually. [00:15:00] from rancid nuts. And so, that was something that I was like, I don't even care. These are definitely like more than a couple months old. I'm just going to get rid of them. So it was kind of little things. It wasn't anything that was big. 

Riley: Yeah. I had some crackers for my daughter that now that you say that rancid nuts, I also had nuts. Um, it was not a lot, like I wasn't just throwing it. Wasn't a ton of food waste. It was just maybe like three to five things where I was like, okay, this, this can go. I don't have a spot for it.

We're not going eat. Or these are gross now, you know, like they're actually ruined now. It's not like I'm, I was throwing away like high quality things or even things that I could have donated, not, not expired things, but like things that we have, like we're no longer eating for a dietary reason or whatever, or that I potentially could have donated.

I was really just throwing away things that were actually bad. So.

Roni: Yeah, totally. Yeah. I had, uh, I think the. Like canned good that I got rid of was a can of soup that said that it expired in 2017. 

So I'm not really sure where that came from or why [00:16:00] it got pushed to the back for so long. But 

Riley: yeah. I would say the 2017 is long enough ago that it is, uh, that your stat is probably wise. 

Roni: I'm going to say that I'm going to say that a plastic liner on the inside of that aluminum can, is done for. 

Riley: Oh dear. Oh, gosh. Um, well, let's see. So another tip that I have, inside my pantry, or inside my cupboards and food storage areas, I actually have a few baskets, um, which really helped with a lot of my loose items. Like I have a couple of like, I don't know, packets of mixes or, we have some bulk spices that we keep in this, um, food storage area.

And putting them in a basket one, it helps it look so much more organized to be that way, but also. Um, it just kind of consolidates them really well, really nicely. I thought it was super helpful. I even went and bought a few more baskets, because I just like loved how it helped my organization. I also put all of [00:17:00] my toddlers snacks into little baskets too.

So then it removed all of the rest of the packaging. So it's not taking up so much extra space because of the bulky packaging. It just all out of the packaging. It's. Uh, in those little baskets inside the shelves and super helpful and organization, like it's, it's not like I'm trying to think how to describe it.

It's just like all the little bars are in one little basket and you can just pull one out. It's not having to dig for it. Super helpful. I took some things out of my cupboards, like all my life. My food storage bags and things like that, that all came out. It's now just a food pantry. And then I put those in a different spot and actually bought a basket for all of those kinds of things.

So that they're organized now where they live. Um, which, so the baskets really helpful. I found mine at target for super inexpensive, and I looked on Amazon super expensive for baskets on Amazon. So highly recommend shopping around to find you some little cheap baskets to like put some food storage items.[00:18:00] 

Roni: Yeah, that's a great tip. Yeah, I was one thing I was going to mention too, is that, um, so I had those glass containers that, have like the flip top that, uh, I had the loose leaf tea in. And so when I chunked the loose leaf tea, I then had some other things in my pantry that I was like, oh, I could get rid of the packaging and put them in these containers.

And so like, you know, I washed and dried the containers and then I had just like popcorn kernels here, like loose popcorn kernels that I filled up one with. Um, I can't remember now what I put in the other one. I think like, I think we had just put toothpicks in the other one. But like the little box of toothpicks that we have is like falling apart anyways.

So. I think that that's really a key thing to do, particularly if you have, if you already have these storage containers and you're just not using them, finding a way to give them a purpose is that like, this is the best time to do it is like, if you're going through and spending the time to do all of this reorganization anyways, like now is the time to just consolidate things and put them in a [00:19:00] container or. 

Riley: absolutely. What do, what kind of food do you keep on hand? I'm curious WIC because of the amount of storage space you have being so limited, you have to be a bit more choosy about what you choose to keep on hand. So what is kind of the method that you've.

Roni: that's an interesting question, Riley. Uh, so we usually keep about. Honestly, as far as like canned like beans and stuff, or like, uh, you know, like maybe like cans of enchilada sauce or any like literally any canned goods. We pretty much can't store more than a dozen in, on one of our shelves.

So like, I think right now that's, that's how many we have is we have a dozen and it's mostly canned beans. I think we have one can of coconut milk and like one canned of enchilada sauce or something. And then I always keep. Um, canned tuna and some canned chicken on hand. Um, my husband hates canned tuna, so that's just for me. And then let's see, I have baking, I have baked baking stuff. [00:20:00] So, you know, like I keep a few different types of flour on hand, a few different types of sugar on hand. I always have. At least one bag of rice in my cupboard. And then, um, sometimes I'll also have like a bag of dried black beans or something.

Um, I don't often make black beans from scratch like that, but there are a few recipes that I actually think it's like way better to make the black beans from scratch. So I will, and then let's see. Uh, we always have a couple of bags of coffee on hand. We get a coffee subscription once a month. And so I always have like a couple bags until the next subscription renews.

And then. I was so, so actually the really nice thing about doing this before I went to the grocery store was that then I, I found that I had much more room in my cupboards and I thought I actually did. And So

I went to the grocery store and I was like, oh, this brand of pasta that I like is on sale. And so I'm going to buy like four of them.

And so, so now I have some extra pasta that's on hand. let's see. I think I also [00:21:00] bought. I'm trying to remember. I bought a couple of extra things at the grocery store to fill up my cupboards. And now I don't remember all the things I think about like a couple boxes of Mac and cheese just for funsies and, um, we, we really, we don't really don't keep much on hand, so it's, um, You know, like I could make a couple full meals out of the things that we keep on hand, but I don't like we'd maybe be able to eat for a week only out of our cupboard. 

Riley: Yeah. Um, so Ron Roni lives, what? Probably 15 minutes from a grocery store, maybe like 10 minutes from the grill.

Roni: uh, probably 10. Yeah. probably 

Riley: Yeah. Yeah. I live about 45 to 50 minutes from the grocery store and we actually live at a pretty high elevation. And so one of the reasons why we keep a few more things on hand, as far as canned goods, canned chicken rice, things like that is, um, is just for the, like, particularly through the winter. Like we, I, you know, I've mentioned this on the podcast before, but I typically have.

A few recipes, just kinda like [00:22:00] Roni just said, you could probably eat for a week off of what you've got and you're not necessarily making full meals off of that. Um, but can of beans can attune to that kind of thing. I keep a few like meals on hand. So at any given point, we can just put that together.

If we get a big snow storm and don't, can't, don't leave or can't leave. You know, because we live so far, it's not. Easy to just run out and get an ingredient. So we tend to keep things on hand, you know, Plan to Eat. So revolutionized my meal planning because I don't forget things at the grocery store anymore.

You know, I don't have that moment of. Oh, no, I forgot the main ingredient or, oh no, we don't have this essential spice. Because I shop at home before I go to the grocery store, it really eliminates that issue. So the reason why I tend to have things on hand is, you know, I've mentioned this before I buy things when they're on sale so that I can save money on future grocery lists.

Um, but a lot of ours has to do with just being a long way from town. And, you know, we end up having meals here, spontaneously if we'd planned to go out. [00:23:00] Or maybe I haven't done my meal planning yet. And so we've got options. But kinda like you, we keep, you know, pasta sauce, pasta, rice, canned chicken or tuna.

You know, we keep enchilada sauce, coconut milk, um, you know, things along those lines really kind of like meal maker kind of items.

Roni: I definitely think that that's a difference between, uh, probably my ability to store food and just probably the majority of people who are able to have like a pantry storage is like, ours is literally. Just for our everyday meal planning and our everyday recipes. It's, there's very little of it that is, you know, like food storage for, you know, a bad time or something, you know?

Riley: Yeah. Yeah. 

Roni: As I say, unlike you, I organized my spices as well. And I found that to be hugely helpful, uh, in just like my organization, because I did actually have a lot of spices that were expired. [00:24:00] Because there, you know, You know, nutmeg or cloves or whatever that, like I only use around the holidays.

And so it's like, I probably have been using these same spices for the last, like three to five years. And so it was, it was really good to kind of, you know, get rid of some of those things that are old because similar to loose leaf tea, like they just, they lose their potency and they don't taste as good in your recipes if they're super old.

Uh, my mom is one of those people. Who's like a really big stickler on expired spices. And she writes like the date that she opened a spice on and 

stuff. I am, I'm not that kind of a person. I just went through and found the ones that were expired. And then, and then just did some reorganizing of, you know, like we have an extra, we always have like an extra cumin and we have an extra onion powder or whatever.

And so I just kind of pushed those ones to the back instead of, you know, accidentally opening the ones. Is like the backup, you know? And so I've moved to the other ones to the front. And so that was really nice to go through and organize that as well. And I got rid of.

like some old like sprinkles and like some cookie sprinkles and that kind of stuff that it was like, I [00:25:00] don't know if you have those that are, it's like one sprinkle container that has like five different kinds of sprinkles.

It has like five different tops, you know? And it was like, and it was just like, I had used all of the sprinkles except for like one of the colors. And I'm like, what is the point of keeping this? 

Riley: Well, it takes up so much more space, right? Because that whole container takes up so much more space, but you only have the one amount of sprinkles. 

Yeah. 

And particularly for you, you have to be so aware of space. So, 

Roni: yeah, 

Riley: yeah, that's really interesting. I definitely did not do my spice cabinet. Uh, mostly going back to that thing.

I mentioned about the amount of time I had. I just, I did my pantry and I just felt. I felt like I couldn't go any further. I was like, okay, I need to stop here. I did this, I did, I made a major amount of work. And I just didn't feel like I had the, like the time to go through that. And also it was like a big undertaking.

Cause I think that I'll find that it's going to be quite the, quite the task to do the spices. Um, but now that you're saying. I'm just [00:26:00] thinking spices are one of the most expensive things you can buy at the grocery store. Now, obviously they last forever, but when you run out of an ingredient or a spice, sometimes they're very expensive.

You know, like even I'm thinking about vanilla, like vanilla can be so expensive. And so like, to make sure that you're actually using what you have. So you're not throwing things away. I'm also not buying extra, but like just going through it and knowing what you have. So you're, you know, just, you know, you have, I'm just thinking that going through that cabinet would be really beneficial for me.

Get rid of the old stuff and just make sure I'm actually utilizing what I have. Cause I don't want that. Not stuff. I want it to go to waste

Roni: Well, I highly recommend it too, because you've always talked about this thing where you buy seven chili powders at the grocery store. And so, and so, and just, even in that regard, then like refreshing your memory of like, oh, these are the spices that I do have, and you could even do a situation where it's like, you know, like I have some in Marsala season, senior seasoning.

And so it's like, Plan more recipes that use that seasoning [00:27:00] or something, you know, like it's kind of a refresher that, or like an inspiration piece to be like, oh Yeah.

Let's plan some recipes to like, use this flavor. 

Riley: Yeah, that's great. A great reminder to me to do that. We have, I don't know how you keep your spices, but we have ours on one of those lazy Susans, those little turntables. Um, and I actually don't find it to be very helpful because, because it's like six inches deep. Wait, why are you laughing to me? 

Roni: I just think that it's funny that you don't find it very useful. 

Riley: I don't because it's about six inches deep and a little spice container. They get buried on the inside. And so I find, I used like, I'll find the ones we use a lot are on the outside, but the ones on the inside get buried in that turntable. And so it's kind of hard to find them inside the cabinet and on the turntable cause they're kind of buried and um, I think I would prefer one of those.

You know, graduated shelves with them on it. Cause then you can kind of all see [00:28:00] all their faces instead of, um, kind of having to like dig through this, dig through the lazy, lazy Susan to find the one that's on the inside of the turntable. I just struggled that cabinets a little bit higher up. And then once you have, it's like higher up than, than spices on the inside of that turntable, they just kinda to get easily get overlooked.

So you're right. I definitely need to go through it and then maybe come up with a better solution for the cabinet.

Roni: I don't have a good solution to recommend to you because I just have. A cupboard and they just get like stacked on top of each other in there. I basically just had try to have to have to try and remember what I do have, or I have to actually look through the spices before I go shopping. If I'm going to like wondering if I actually have something now, my husband is a custom home builder and they make these really cool cupboard that are specifically for spices.

And it's this like really skinny, little, little cupboard and you pull it out and then your, your, um, Spices or like all displayed. Like they just have, it's like specifically made for a little spice [00:29:00] racks 

and it's just like this really thin, it almost looks like a cupboard that you would pull out and have, um, like you would open it up and it would look like there would be like a cutting board storage or something, except that.

you pull it out and then there's, uh, you know, like racks in there for all your spices.

So you can view everything at once. So if you, if anybody is building a home, build this kind of stuff, Cabinet cupboard thing into your kitchen because. 

Riley: Yeah. If you're a foodie and you use a variety of spices, you know, We are really, I think both of us would say that we're very at pretty adventurous eaters and chefs. And so like, we have a wide variety of spices that we're working with. You know, there's nothing wrong with this, but I just know people who tend to stick to like maybe maybe 10 spices or less in like what they cook with.

And so, but I have a significantly larger amount of spices than that. Um, we just tend to have a variety of these kinds of things and we cook with those things. And so having a really. [00:30:00] Display for them would be really helpful. That cabinet sounds awesome. 

I'm going to call your husband and see if he'll build me one or mine. I guess ask him if he'll build me one. Um, just add it to the list of all the things that I want him to build me all the time.

Uh, so I, another thing that I ran into, which I don't know if other people will have this problem or not, my daughter loves to cook with me. Um, but I also did this clean out before lunch. And so my daughter kept coming over and wanted to eat the snacks or eat the food, or she'd be like, oh, let's cook this.

Like, she'd pull out the mix or the pasta and be like, I want to cook it. I want to stir. That's what she always says. I want to stir. Uh, part of my, um, my recommendation to other people who are reorganizing, the things that they have on hand is do what, when your kids distracted or do it when they go to bed or, you know, just because I found that she was [00:31:00] disorganizing as I was organizing or kind of trying to derail the situation, which she honestly did really well.

But we, there were a few moments where I'm like, Hey, no, we're not going to eat this right now. No, I'm not gonna cook this right now. Okay. We'll stir something later. Um, just because I was trying to get, you know, my task done. So that was just a funny little thing that happened.

Roni: I bet she was adorable when she did that. 

Riley: She's such a cutie. It's hard to, you know, sometimes it's hard to be like, no, we're not going to cook that right now. Cause I know you really want to, and I do love that you like to help me in the kitchen, One thing I did not do after my food storage clean-out was go to my staples list and update it.

Um, but that's something that I think actually would be really helpful for me is to just go through. and say, I've got three cans of coconut milk. I've got rice, I've got all these things because when I've got those moments in the, and I do really shop at home most of the time, occasionally I end up at the grocery store when I wasn't planning on it.

And that's the times when I do [00:32:00] that thing, you mentioned earlier that, oh no, do I have this? And then I buy too, because then I've, I already bought one at the store last time I was there. But if I have. Really updated my, you know, my staples list inside of plan to eat. Um, I could always check there. And so that's something that I should have done and I didn't do, but now that it's organized, it'll be so much easier to go through and do that.

Roni: That's a really good tip actually. And I think that.

that would be a great thing to do, particularly for this spice situation, because then you know that you don't have nutmeg or cumin or chili powder or whatever, and you need to buy those things or that you have five of them and you definitely do not need to buy 

Riley: Yeah. Yeah. I don't think it's quite that bad over here. I make, I probably exaggerate a bit how often I buy chili powder. Um, but it is my real life example of the thing I always questioned, but you're right. I just should go through and actually list all the things. Um, And have a really concise list and paint Plan to Eat.

It allows you to do that. So I should take advantage of that. I just have not, and I just [00:33:00] tend to let my keynote cupboards become a mess. So

Roni: Uh, do you have any other last tips or should we move on to, a recipe chat?

Riley: I don't think I have anything else other than, I just want to reiterate how I feel about my cabinets being organized. My, I really feel like it's, it helps me know what I want a meal plan. It helped me feel a little bit of freedom in that. It's not, you know, every time I open it, it doesn't stress me out.

I want to look at it because it's so organized. And so, you know, if you are feeling like that, the task that you don't want to take on at your house, because it's so overwhelming, I would say take the time, sit down one Saturday morning and just. And I think you'll feel a lot better cause I really, really feel so much better about it.

Roni: I love it. That's great. 

Okay. So, Riley, do you have a recipe on your meal plan that was inspired by your cabinet? Clean out.

Riley: I do, I, um, when I was cleaning out my pantry, I found. Um, [00:34:00] some cans of mango slices and just like mango juice. Now, I typically will buy a fresh mango, but they're a bit out. of season right now for us.

And so I did buy one a couple of weeks ago and it was the hardest thing I've ever peeled. It was so frustrating. I don't feel like I got like my money's worth out of it because it was a frustrating experience to like, get all the meat off of it. Or like the flesh off of it. So. Like when I saw those cans of mango in my pantry, I was like, I know what I'm going to do with this.

So we love this pulled pork. My husband makes this pulled pork in the crock pot. and then we put it on tacos with a mango pineapple salsa. It's so yummy. It has pineapple mango, cilantro, jalapenos, avocado, onion, lime, and salt. I think that's everything. Um, you just mix all that up. It's amazing on this pulled pork, and I think it would be good on a lot of different kinds of tacos, even a vegetarian taco. so, so good. I love it. [00:35:00] So that's like a simple thing that I just like found those cans of mangoes made that Falsa. Cause I had other ingredients that I needed for. So yummy. I'm so glad I found those cans because it was so much easier. 

Roni: Yeah, that sounds amazing. That sounds like I would just want to eat that by itself.

Riley: is really, really good. I'm excited to share that recipe with everybody. Yeah. So what about you? What did you find? What recipes did you make? 

Roni: Okay. So I haven't made this recipe yet, but it's on my meal plan for the week, but it's a beef and cauliflower taco skillet. And so I'm going through all of my cupboards and stuff. I got, obviously had the can of black beans. I had all of the spices needed for this recipe. There's a can of Rotel tomatoes that you need.

And then in my freezer, I have ground beef and rice cauliflower. So like kind of the only thing that I needed to buy at the grocery store for this recipe was an avocado and some cilantro. So I was pretty proud of myself that I was able to then kind of like super sleuths my, [00:36:00] my recipe book to find a recipe that like, I really didn't need to buy much for at all.

And I think that I probably wouldn't have been inspired to plan this recipe. Had it not been for my cabinet clean-out we've had this recipe before and I really like it, but. I just kind of has like fallen off my radar. And 

Riley: Oh, yeah. 

Roni: kind of nice to be reminded of it again, cause it's really yummy.

Riley: I love recipes like that. Like one, you really didn't spend any money on it. to like, you utilized things you had on hand, I've said this on the podcast before, but I really love having a meal or two on hand. So that on those random nights, when we weren't supposed to eat at home or, or maybe I haven't made my meal plan yet, I can just be like, oh, it's fine.

I've got this thing. And we love it. I it's one of my favorite things. So that's one of those things that you can kind of keep on hand. 

Roni: Yeah, totally. Cause really you don't even need like the avocado in cilantro, if you don't, if you don't ha you don't have to have it. Like, those are kind of like the toppings for the skillet. So basically I could make everything for the actual taco skillet with just the things that we have on [00:37:00] hand, which is super great.

Riley: Um, that sounds great. 

Roni: Well, thank you, everyone for listening to another episode of the plan to eat podcast, we hope that you enjoy this and maybe we inspired you to do your own cupboard clean-out in your house. Uh, share this podcast with somebody so they can get some goodies as well, and subscribe and download wherever you get your podcasts.