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Pantry Shelf Height: How High Should Pantry Shelves Be?

Storing food has always been a big concern and having a pantry is the best solution for this. But even if you are fortunate enough to own a pantry, all your problems related to food storage will not disappear. There are many things you have to consider when you build a pantry.

To organize your food, maintaining proper shelf height can help a lot. It will make things easier when you label your foods. Naturally, it is frequently asked about the pantry shelf height. 

Let us do a deep dive into the matter and provide you with the information that you are looking for regarding this matter.

Pantry shelf height

Pantry shelf height depends on the type of goods you are storing. The height generally ranges from 6.5 inches to 24 inches. More specifically, the pantry shelf height should be 6.5 to 7 inches for canned goods, 14 to 16 inches for cereal boxes, and 18 to 24 inches for large items.

Two of the most common pantry shelves nowadays are standard pantry shelf and walk-in pantry shelf. You can choose any of these two and cannot go wrong. But if you want to find the best option for you, then stick with us. 

To make things easier for you, we have done all the research and made the pieces of information ready for you.

The height of the pantry shelf usually varies based on the type of pantry shelf that you are using. The type that will be suitable will vary based on your use case. If you are using the pantry shelf to store canned goods, the height would be around 6.5 – 7 inches. 

But on the other hand, if you are using cereal boxes, the height would be ideally around 14 – 16 inches.

It can be said that the pantry shelf height is primarily dependent on the things you may store in it. Another thing that varies the height of the pantry shelf is the type of pantry shelf that you will be using in your house or kitchen. 

If you are using a standard pantry shelf, it may range around 6.5 – 20 inches. But on the other hand, it will vary a lot in terms of the walk-in pantry shelf.

You may ask what the standard pantry shelf height of the popular pantry shelf is popular around. In the current world, standard pantry shelves and walk-in pantry shelves are the two most widely used pantry shelves, according to statistics. 

Let us provide you with the essential information regarding the ideal pantry shelf height for these two so that you can better understand them.

Standard pantry shelf:

As for the height of your standard pantry shelf, it ranges from 6.5 to 20 inches, depending on the type of the goods. It would be best if you sorted the shelf heights in descending order. 

Keep the bottom-most shelf height 18 to 20 inches and keep the lower-height shelves in the upper area. As this pantry shelf is known as a cabinet pantry, it usually has plenty of space to store different food and kitchen items of your need.

Walk-in pantry shelf:

A Walk-in pantry shelf usually has a height of around 18 – 24 inches. As for the height of your walk-in pantry shelves, you will have a lot more freedom here as the pantry is usually enormous. You can store some big items or kitchen appliances here. 

You can install some smaller height shelves ranging from 6.5 to 16 inches. It will cover most of the items you need to keep in your pantry.

How many inches is between pantry shelves? 

The standard space between shelves is mostly around 18 to 24 inches. But experts suggest that pantry shelves’ space between the shelves can vary based on the items that you will keep. You can adjust the space between the shelves according to your need.

For a satisfying pantry, shelf spacing is pretty important. Having the right spacing for your pantry will prove quite important for you. You may get puzzled figuring out the correct spacing for your pantry shelves and to be frank it can be complicated to plan for.

As for our suggestions, try to keep the depths low to the upper shelves where it is hard to reach. For the shelves where you can easily reach, you can decide to put more space in those shelves. It will help you keep more goods in one place and provide you ease of access to them.

What is the code for pantry shelf height? 

The code for pantry shelf height is that you should have at least 2 inches of extra space above the height of the tallest item. The shelf height should be 6.5 inches to 24 inches. Most kitchen items and goods can be stored in the shelf height within this mentioned range.

Pantry shelf height is an essential factor for a pantry. It would be best if you had the correct shelf height to use your pantry optimally. You will have trouble organizing your goods and items if you do not have the right shelf height. That is why there is a code for pantry shelf height.

For large and bulky goods, the ideal height of your shelves should be 16-24 inches, 12 to 14 inches for cereals, general storage, and wine bottles, and 6.5 to 8 inches for bottled and canned goods. 

Be sure to maintain the code for pantry shelf height and you will be satisfied with your pantry.

3 factors that determine the pantry shelf height

There are some key factors that determine the pantry shelf height. You need to be conscious of these factors as without considering these factors you cannot decide on the pantry shelf height. Here are the factors that you need to keep in mind.

To store canned goods:

The average height of canned goods is 4 inches. If you want a shelf dedicated to canned goods, you need to ensure the shelf has a height of 6.5 inches to 8 inches.

It will be easy to find the canned goods all on the same shelf and it will help you organize the goods immensely. 

For General storage:

Cereal boxes usually are around 12 inches in height. Baskets that are best for pantries are generally around 8 inches in height. Mason jars are approximately 7 inches in height. These are some examples of general kitchen goods. 

So it is appropriate to say that a 12 to 14 inches height pantry shelf is the way to go for general storage. 

For large items:

Large goods such as pet food containers, potatoes, sparkling water etc have varying shapes. To store large items, you need a good clearance of height. That being said, the ideal height to store large goods should be 16 to 24 inches. 

It would be better to stick around the upper range in this case. That way, you can store most large items on the shelf.

How to measure the proper pantry shelf height and install it?

The following steps will help you out to measure the proper pantry shelf height and install it –

Measure the proper pantry height:

Depending on the goods you want to store on the particular shelf, measure the shelf height. For canned goods, it will be 6.5 to 8 inches. For general storage, it will be 12-14 inches. Finally, for large storage, it will be 16 to 24 inches.

Plan your shelf placement:

How you want your shelves to be installed in the pantry, depending on that, create a plan. Plan out the height of the shelf you want to install in what placement. Keep markings where you will be placing support boards and shelves.

Cut the support boards and shelves:

You should buy the shelves precut. However, you need to customize the length of the shelves to fit in your pantry. Measure the length of the walls. After that, cut the shelves to size. 

As you are installing shelves on adjacent walls, you need to consider the corners in your measurement. After that, cut the support boards to size as well.

Install support boards and shelves:

Attach the support board along with the marks you have made previously. Make sure to attach them evenly. Use drills and screws to ensure that the support boards are securely attached to the wall. Then install the shelves. 

Use a drill machine and screws to attach them to the support board.

Install shelf bracket:

The support brackets should be aligned vertically with the help of screws and using a drill. You can use a cordless drill if you need it. This will make your pantry shelves better.

Final Thoughts 

Pantry shelf height mainly depends on the goods you are going to store. To accommodate these goods, pantry shelf height may vary from 6.5 to 8 inches, 12 to 14 inches, and 16 to 24 inches. If you choose the right size for your pantry shelves, you can own a functional pleasant-looking pantry.