This post introduces my Seasonal Kitchen Pantry planner. It’s a free download of a 9-step process designed for food preservationists.
The information we gain from this planning process will help us plan the 2020 kitchen garden with the intention of creating a seasonal kitchen and seasonal meal plans during the fall and winter months to come.
Be sure to download the Seasonal Kitchen Pantry Planner that supports the 9-step process!
This post contains affiliate links based on my personal experience with products that support a seasonal lifestyle. As an amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I hope you find them useful.
Food pantry organizing and planning is a must for the seasonal kitchen!
I did not plan my pantry this year.
In my defense, there was a wedding.
But now, I’m knee-deep into winter and buying way more produce at the local farmers market and supermarket than I want. My pocketbook is feeling it!
I’m fortunate to have these local resources for winter vegetables, I know. But, homegrown is better. Every time.
You want to plan your pantry so that you have the foods you eat stored for off-season meals. This is more affordable, nutritious, and gentler on the planet that purchasing vegetables from supermarkets.
Besides, you have all those mason jars! You might as well put them to good use.
The Seasonal Kitchen Pantry Planner helps you with the 9-Steps of Organizing and Planning the Pantry!
I wrote down my own planning process and did a good bit of research into others. I distilled all that information down into this 9-step process to plan the food pantry for 2020 and beyond.
You can download the Seasonal Kitchen Pantry Planner here!
What follows is the detailed how-to. It supports the free planner that has worksheets for each of the 9 steps.
Yes, that’s my thing…planners, journals, trackers!
If you want to see all the seasonal living resources, simply join our Facebook Group and click the ‘Files’ tab for free and easy access.
1. Get clean and organized.
My pantry, fridge, fermentation fridge, and freezer are a catastrophe! Again, I plead wedding! I was a little distracted in 2019, and my pantry shows it!
The best way to get organized with big projects like this is to empty everything out. Then review each item and see if it is worth keeping or should be discarded.
Yeah, those canned beans from 2009…toss ’em!
Chipped mason jars? Move them to a separate pile for non-canning uses, like flower vases.
I discovered that on top of having a bit of an issue with hoarding jars, I stockpile pectin! That’s what happens when you find out what’s lurking in pantry shadows.
2. Inventory current preserved foods.
As you put preserved foods back, inventory them.
Then, when canning season begins, you can look for what you can too much of, not enough, off, and what was completely missing in your canning pantry.
Since I ferment a lot, this will include inventorying my fermentation fridge. I honestly hate that it is in the basement because I forget to use the items quickly. This year, I think I’ll move it closer to the kitchen for easier access.
I freeze a lot more than ever these days, so the freezer gets a once-over for inventory as well.
Use the Inventory Sheet in the Food Preservation Pantry Planner to stay organized.
3. Inventory supplies and equipment.
Your food preservation pantry should include equipment like jars, rings, lids, canners, canning utensils, and the like.
Clean, organize, inspect, and inventory those items as well.
You may notice that a specific piece of equipment is aging and needs repair or replacement. This happened to me last summer. I completely cooked the bottom out of my oldest hot water bath canner (the only way to do tomatoes!). I was caught off-guard because I didn’t do this process last winter.
There’s a Worksheet for this in the Planner, too!
4. Keep track of the vegetables you are buying at the supermarket.
Keep track of what you are buying at the supermarket during the off season.
This year, we are buying a whole bunch of broccoli because mine didn’t take in the fall garden. We had a drought in August and September and I didn’t keep up with the watering. Now, I’m buying frozen organic broccoli every week and cringing every time I do.
What’s in your shopping cart?
5. Learn traditional methods of food preservation in the off season.
Now is the time to read and study traditional methods of food preservation.
Whether it’s my courses, or something more in-depth, do it now!
I find it pretty impossible to learn these methods when the food starts coming in like an avalanche.
Here are my trusted and recommended resources:
And, these are must-have books for the seasonal kitchen:
6. Use seed catalogs to expand the variety of foods you will preserve in 2020.
Expand your sense of what’s possible for your food preservation pantry by reviewing your seed catalogs with an eye focused on the pantry.
Use the preserving calendar in the Planner to help focus when seed-overwhelm sets in. It’s a thing. Be prepared!
7. Learn about fall and winter vegetable gardening.
Here are my trusted resources for season extension in the kitchen garden:
8. Begin collecting recipes and other resources in advance of the canning season.
Again, you can’t start too soon with preparation.
Anyone who has canned tomatoes in August knows the produce won’t wait for you to figure things out. They sit and overripen right before your bleary eyes!
There’s a recipe card template in the Planner. I think a spreadsheet with hotlinks to online recipes is a useful way to organize canning recipes as well.
9. Get the Seasonal Kitchen Pantry Planner!
Download the entire planner and use this final worksheet to create your seasonal kitchen pantry plan for 2020.
Use it with this post to make a plan for your 2020 pantry that will reliably feed your family through the off season.
Follow along with the 52 Weeks of Seasonal Eating project
That’s right! We’re creating a seasonal eating meal plan every week of 2020. The meal plans are delivered with the Sunday newsletter and always available in the Facebook Group.
The weekly pots are accompanied by a shopping list and recipes. It’s my real-time, real life meal plan for the year and I think you’ll find it helpful!
Use the 2020 Seasonal Living Planner to create your seasonal life!
This 50+ page planner will help you create your seasonal life in 2020!
It begins with journal prompts to help with goal setting. It then offers planning forms, trackers, and calendars to get you aligned with nature’s time and rhythms for a deep and profound sense of wellness.