These free printable food inventory templates for the pantry, refrigerator, and freezer will help organize your kitchen and prevent food waste!
We’ve all experienced going to the store and picking up some ingredients, only to realize we already had a bunch of that same ingredient at home.
The reverse scenario is also a pain. We assume we have an ingredient at home so we don’t buy it, just to realize we’ve run out as we’re going to make dinner!
To avoid these inconvenient scenarios, it’s helpful to keep track of what we have in our pantry, refrigerator, and freezer. The free printable food inventory templates in this post can help do just that!
Kitchen inventory printables are helpful for any household but can be particularly useful for those people who do a lot of stocking up and bulk buying.
Along with sharing free printable inventory sheets (in two cute color schemes!) in this post, we will also walk you through the process of performing a food inventory so you can improve the overall organization of your kitchen. Let’s do it!
Why a Food Inventory Checklist Is Helpful
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Before we jump into how to complete a kitchen inventory, let’s take a minute to pinpoint exactly why a food inventory checklist would be helpful.
Creating Meal Plans
First, food inventory sheets are helpful for creating a menu for the week. We can easily see what we have and can plan our meals around those ingredients.
We often have more food than we realize, so having a detailed food inventory sheet helps us to use the food we already have in a smarter way.
Planning Grocery Trips
Making a grocery shopping list will be a lot quicker and easier when we have a detailed list of everything we already have.
As we’re putting ingredients on the list for the meals we’ve planned, we can see at a glance what we have in the refrigerator, freezer, and pantry and what we may need to pick up at the store.
Avoiding Food Waste
Because food inventory templates let us know what we have, we waste less food.
We can use up the food that’s already in our home. And we can avoid buying items we don’t need so we don’t have excess that goes to waste.
Buying in Bulk or Creating a Stockpile
Whether you have a large family, are skilled at scoring deals, or just like to be prepared, there can be a lot of upsides to buying in bulk and creating a stockpile of food in your home.
Dealing with large quantities of food makes it extra important to have an organized system for keeping track of it all, and the kitchen inventory pages are perfect for that.
And speaking of our free food inventory printables…
Free Printable Kitchen Inventory Templates
First things first– print out the food inventory templates. We offer them in two cute color schemes so you can choose the one that best fits your mood, preference, or kitchen color palette.
Download the free food inventory printables by clicking the button below!
This free printable pack includes a refrigerator inventory, pantry inventory, and freezer inventory so you can keep track of your food no matter where you store it in your kitchen.
Now that you have your pretty printables, let’s talk about how to use them!
How to Inventory Your Kitchen
Since the contents and quantities of food in our kitchen change often, we want to make our inventory as easy to update as possible. We like to laminate the inventory printables and use a wet erase marker to make updates. That way we’re not always trying to erase with a pencil or having to print out new sheets.
Our Favorite Laminator
We’ve had this thermal laminator for years and use it all the time to help make our printables reusable!
Our printables conveniently break down the food in our kitchen into three zones– the fridge, the freezer, and the pantry. Let’s tackle one at a time.
What’s in my fridge? – How to Complete a Refrigerator Inventory
Since we need to take stock of everything in the refrigerator anyway, this is a great time to clean it out and create a fresh, organized space.
1. Take everything out of the refrigerator.
Start by removing everything from the fridge and separating items into categories, placing perishable items in a cooler while you work so they don’t go bad.
All like items should be together– all condiments together, lunch meat together, cheeses together, fruits together, etc.
As you’re separating items, be sure to check expiration dates and discard anything that is out of date or no longer usable.
2. Clean the refrigerator drawers and shelves.
When the refrigerator is empty, take the time to wipe down shelves and drawers so your food items are returning to a clean space.
3. Refill the fridge in an organized way.
Return items to the fridge, storing items by category so you can easily find what you need.
Items that are temperature sensitive, like milk and meats, should be placed deeper into the refrigerator so they stay cold and fresh.
Items that are less temperature sensitive, like condiments, can be stored in the door of the refrigerator, which tends to get the warmest.
4. Fill out the refrigerator inventory template.
As you’re putting items back, make note of what you have in your refrigerator on your inventory sheet. The refrigerator inventory sheet includes space for the following information:
- Name of item
- Quantity of item
- Expiration date
- Need column- Use this column to indicate the quantity of this item you need to purchase the next time you go grocery shopping. This will make populating your grocery list oh-so-easy!
Since you’ve already separated items by category, it will be easy to track the same categories on your inventory template as well.
5. Keep the refrigerator inventory printable up to date.
As you use up items, be sure to update the inventory printable so it stays accurate. This is really easy if you use the laminator/wet erase maker strategy!
Putting groceries away after a shopping trip is another great time to take a few minutes to update the refrigerator inventory sheet so you always know what you have in stock.
How to Complete a Freezer Inventory
Freezer inventories can be especially helpful if you keep a chest freezer for extra meats, frozen veggies, ice cream, or other common freezer items you may buy in bulk.
The freezer inventory process follows the same steps as the refrigerator inventory:
- Empty the freezer, separating items into categories.
- Clean the inside of the freezer.
- Refill the freezer, organizing like items together in zones.
- Fill out the freezer inventory printable, noting the items you have, quantities of each item, expiration dates, and shopping needs.
- Keep your freezer inventory up to date by changing quantities as you use up or buy more items.
Since freezers can sometimes feel like a deep, endless pit, the freezer inventory template is an easy way to see what we have at a glance without having to dig through everything.
Using Food Inventory Templates for a Pantry Inventory
Because pantries are deep and often hold a lot of different types of items, it can definitely be a challenge to keep track of everything that we have!
Food inventory printables to the rescue! The pantry inventory printable will be especially helpful if you stock up on a lot of bulk canned goods and dry goods.
Again, the pantry inventory process is very similar to the process for the refrigerator and the freezer:
- Empty out the pantry, dividing items into categories. (All canned goods together, all baking items together, all spices together, etc.)
- Wipe down the pantry shelves and toss anything that has expired.
- Refill the pantry, keeping each category of items together. (Simple bins can help corral various categories.)
- Fill out the pantry inventory printable, noting the items you have, quantities of each item, expiration dates, and shopping needs.
- Keep your pantry inventory up to date by changing quantities as you deplete or restock items.
No matter the size of your pantry, the pantry inventory printable can help make sure it’s well organized at al times!
Kitchen Inventory Printables: Final Thoughts
Do we think that every single kitchen needs to utilize food inventories? Nope. If you already have a good system going, don’t feel like you need to add an extra step just because it’s available.
But if you struggle with knowing what you have in your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry and/or are keeping track of a large quantity of food, these printables were created with you in mind.
We hope the free printable food inventory templates will help you create the streamlined, organized kitchen you’ve been dreaming of!
Related: Free Printable Holiday Menu Planner
Free Printable Food Inventory Templates: Frequently Asked Questions
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This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see our disclosures here.