Tidy the Store Cupboard Challenge Day 1: Quick clean & categorise

Hello and welcome to a new Store Cupboard Challenge for October 2019! We’re going to whip our kitchen food stores into shape, tidy them up and fill in any important gaps, getting ourselves organised as we go along.

It’s Day One, so it’s time to get started with the basics of getting things clean and shiny. It’s also a useful moment to think about how to categorise items so that you can find them more easily when you’re in a hurry.

Today’s activity is very simple to follow and should only take a few minutes, so you might as well make a cup of tea, stick on the radio or a podcast and get the task done and out of the way in a speedy fashion.

Here’s the general list to work through:

  • Get everything out of your main food cupboard. If you have more than one cupboard you use for food storage then work through them one at a time.
  • As you’re taking foods out of the cupboard, be on the look out for musty ripped packets, leaking cartons, or rusty, dented or swollen cans. Get their contents into your food recycling bin, it’s not worth taking the risk of getting food poisoning.
  • Clean your cupboards from top to bottom with a damp cloth and mild detergent, then wipe with a dry, lint free cloth. Remember to clean the undersides of shelves, both sides of the doors, and all around any door handles. Give it a few minutes to air dry.
  • Think about the contents you’ve emptied out of the cupboards. Does it give you a good idea of the store cupboard foods you regularly use and like? Are they grouped together in a sensible way? Can you get to your most commonly used foods quickly? Make a note if anything springs to mind, we can work on that later in the week.
  • Put your groceries back into the cupboards, making sure the bottoms of any packets, boxes, jars, bottles and cans are clean before you place them back down.
  • If you’ve noticed anything you’re especially short of during this quick cleaning exercise, write it down on your shopping list.

Don’t worry too much about the organising side of things today, just focus on getting the area clean and get rid of anything that’s very obviously gone off.


That’s it for today. We’ll be back tomorrow specifically looking at use-by dates, and older and newer foodstuffs.


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