Walk in Pantry vs. Cabinetry Pantry
The Battle Between the Walk in Pantry and the Cabinetry Pantry? Which is Better?
I’ve been designing kitchens for almost 7 years and I’ve worked with a lot of clients, all with different styles and personalities. It’s funny though, no matter the personality or the space, one conversation that comes up time and time again is that of the walk-in pantry vs. the cabinetry pantry. Walk-in pantries are nice, there is no denying that, however, it is sometimes necessary and advisable to remove a walk-in pantry in order to open up a space during a kitchen renovation. Sounds simple enough, but so many people are reluctant nay downright terrified to give up their walk-in pantry for fear that storage will be an issue.
There is definitely a time and place for both options, so let’s dig into the pros and cons of each.
Back in the day, there were no designated pantries designed in kitchens. Most people kept their food alongside their dishware in their kitchen cabinets. When the day came that new houses started incorporating walk-in pantries into their designs, people were ecstatic to have a stand alone area specifically dedicated to their food storage. As we’ve talked about before, spaces stay more organized and structured when items and products have a specific home to be stored in time and time again.
However, there can be cons to this approach, one of which is: Location. Typically walk-in pantries are either located inside the kitchen, taking up a fair amount of valuable real estate or they are located outside of the kitchen making them inconvenient to get to when trying to prepare a meal. Going in and out of the kitchen multiple times can be time consuming and annoying. Another con is the amount of space that actually gets used.
While walk-in pantries can feel large and can take up a good bit of space, they aren’t always the most practical for organizing. Most walls in walk-in pantries are lined with shelves. And while shelves can be great for storage, you typically only end up using the front part of the shelf. No matter how deep the shelf, if you stack items behind each other things quickly become impossible to find.
A cabinet pantry is basically where a tall cabinet is designed to be a dedicated pantry right inside the kitchen. These units can vary in size depending on the overall layout of the space, but regardless of the size, the storage opportunities inside the cabinet can be limitless. A lot of people are reluctant to go in this direction because a cabinet pantry can seem (and usually is) smaller than a walk-in pantry.
However, it’s not necessarily the space you have, but how you use it that dictates optimal functionality. By integrating rollouts and other internal cabinetry components inside your cabinet pantry you can capture as much or more storage space in a cabinet pantry than you can in a walk-in pantry, even if it’s actually smaller in size. Think about pulling out a 24″ deep rollout full of cans, by bringing the rollout to you, you can see all of the contents of the shelf without having to move one can to get to the next.
Companies like Richelieu, Rev-A-Shelf, and Hafele all have a large assortment of goodies you can utilize to capture even more space. Items like….door mount spice racks, woven fruit and vegetable and woven fruit and vegetable pullouts to name a few.
At the end of the day, storage is storage and both pantry solutions work for different people. My biggest piece of advice to anyone in the midst of a kitchen remodel is to consider thinking outside the box in which you live. If you’re going to go to the trouble of disrupting your life and spending the money to improve your space, allow professionals to help you make your kitchen the best it can be, even if it is outside your comfort zone!