There’s nothing quite like a freestanding larder cupboard for keeping foods and crockery neat and organised. Below, read our helpful guide to the perfect kitchen pantry cabinet.
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The kitchen larder cupboard is the Swiss army knife of kitchen storage. Here’s a rundown of the kinds of storage you’re likely to see.
Having a wide pantry cabinet can be an issue if you need to save space, but deep shelves encourage you to shove items to the back of the unit, never to be seen again.
Storage doors are the answer. Storage doors effectively give you more shelves which can be folded away rather than taking up unnecessary room.
Because the doors provide you with more sections, it’s simpler to keep everything organised and harder to bury goods you don’t use as much.
In addition, storage doors are built to take plenty of weight, making them the ideal place for heavy items that come in glass bottles and jars, such as herbs, spices, jams, jellies and condiments.
The unique appeal of baskets is their transportability. You can pull them out of the larder cupboard completely and either place them on the counter or take them elsewhere in the house. Since they are lighter than a wooden drawer, they can be carried effortlessly and are unlikely to damage your floor (or foot!) when dropped.
You can search through them more easily, too. Not only can you take them somewhere with better lighting, you can stand or sit comfortably while hunting, rather than needing to crouch or stoop.
Use larger baskets to stockpile lighter dried goods – anything that won’t burst, break or bruise when items start to stack up.
Finally, baskets are beautiful and well-suited to a contemporary style kitchen, as you can see from our Suffolk buttermilk larder cupboard.
You can easily see what’s on your shelves. This makes them a great place to put foods you use often, since you can see at a glance whether you’ve got enough to throw together a certain dish or for the kids to make fairy cakes. Alternatively, you might prefer to use them for items you need to remember to use up, since you’ll be more likely to notice them.
Shelves are also good place to keep open packets and liquids, since you can stand things upright without fear of spillages.
Shelving of different heights can maximise the use of space in your larder unit. Your tiny jars of herbs and spices won’t be hogging all the room while you’re reluctantly laying larger items on their sides on the shelf below.
Shelf compartments are another great tool for planning your pantry. Rather than cramming lots of different foods together, you can split them into separate sections, making it easier to see what you have – and what you don’t!
Drawers are a good place to store items you don’t need to use regularly, since you can tuck them away from your staple ingredients. They’re a good home for things that are unusually shaped and won’t stand up easily, since a drawer won’t allow them to fall out.
They’re also useful for heavier items like tins and cans of food. Some kitchen larder units feature metal drawer runners, which make drawers even more robust and simpler to pull out.
Mini-drawers are useful places for storing little items which are likely to get lost or buried in a larger drawer – for example, stock and sugar cubes, cocktail sticks and small bags of leftover herbs or spices.
Cupboards are ideal for larger items, such as pots and pans and oven dishes. Some cupboards open separately, sitting above or below the main storage doors, so you won’t have to open the whole pantry cupboard to access their contents.
Some kitchen larder units incorporate a wine rack for added versatility. This means you can store your cooking wines with the rest of your ingredients and see instantly if you’ve got a matching red or white for your meal.
How can you tell which combination of storage will meet your needs? See our advice below.
How much room do you have for your larder cupboard? If you’re just looking to take the strain off your bursting kitchen cupboards, a small unit will provide that little bit of extra space to give your ingredients and crockery some breathing room.
On the other hand, a large larder cupboard is a brilliant option if you lack fixed cabinets or just want to keep absolutely everything in one place.
Consider how you cook and shop before settling on a larder cupboard. If you tend to stockpile certain items over others, choose storage that matches your buying habits.
If you’re the type to buy tons of interesting ingredients but then forget what you have in the house, choose storage that lets you display those items so you know what options you have available.
If you keep lots of different kinds of items in your pantry cupboard, pick something that’s divided into more sections so you can order everything properly.
Finally, factor in whether your larder cupboard is going to be used for essentials or for items you use less often.
Most importantly, however, make sure your pantry is a joy to visit! You’ll probably be dipping into it several times a day, so why not make those trips enjoyable, convenient and stress-free? There are no rules, so use your kitchen larder cupboard for whatever you want, in whatever way works best for you.
With any luck, you’re now well on your way to knowing what your ideal pantry cabinet will be. View our kitchen larder units and see what’s in store for you.