What are Pantry Pests, and How Do You Get Rid of Them?

There’s nothing as distressing as finding pests in places where you store your food. The creatures are a nuisance and very destructive. Some of the areas that are more susceptible to pest infestation are cupboards and pantries since their contents tend to stay without being moved around often.

 While pantry pests don’t predispose any severe infections, they can damage your food and make it unconsumable. In this article, we’ll discuss everything about these critters, including what they are, the type of food they attack, and how to banish them from your kitchen.

What are Pantry Pests?

Also known as “Stored product Pests,” pastry pests are a group of insects that attack dry or stored food products in your home. These critters joyfully nibble through sweet and fatty food products.

Some of the pantry pests you’ll often find in your kitchen are weevils, moths, and beetles. The creatures may not cause any diseases, sting, or bite you but are more of a nuisance and food destroyers. Eradicating pantry pests can be a daunting task, but it’s achievable if you know what to do.

What Do Pantry Pests Look Like?


A study by Penn State University’s Department of Entomology found that the Indian Meal Moth, Plodia interpunctella, is the typical type of moth that attacks dry foods in the US. The critters are about 1/2 -inch long and can easily be identified by their reddish-brown forewings. The outer parts of the wings have a copper luster and are whitish-gray on the inner side.

The pale-yellow-brown Angoumois Grain Moth is the other type of moth found in the pantry, although not regularly.


The most common beetles you’ll likely find in your food storage unit are saw-tooth grained beetles, cigarette beetles, and flour beetles. They feed on loose or open products such as cereals, candies, and dried fruits.


Typically found in cereal and flour, Weevils have long snouts and brown distinguish weevils to black bodies. They are several kinds of weevils, including maize weevil, rice weevil, and granary weevil.

Commons Foods that Pantry Pests can Infest

  • Cereal and cereal products include rice, maize, flour, crackers, spaghetti, and cake mix.
  • Nuts
  • Powdered milk
  • Chocolate
  • Spices
  • Raisins and other dried fruits
  • Tea
  • Birdseed
  • Dry pet food
  • Cheese
  • Dried Meats

Where do Pantry Pests come from?

The majority of pantry pests make their way into your home inside the food packaging. They’re brought in when inside food packages and spread to other susceptible products. Although the pantry pests may fly in through open windows and doors, they primarily originate from product handling locations such as delivery trucks, during processing, and grocery stores.

How to Control and Get Rid of Pantry Pests?

Find the Source

The first step to controlling and getting rid of pests in your pantry is to find out their source. This is not an easy feat since these pesky critters might hitch a ride to your home while inside the food products or fly in through the windows and doors.

However, you can control and eradicate the pantry pests only when you know the source of infestation.

Sterilize Dry Food Products

If you discover that pests are coming with the food package, make sure you sterilize the products before storage. You can also do the same to food products that are already infested by pests.

Regular Cleaning

When one of the food packages in your pantry is infected, it can spill the pests on the shelves. The insects can move to other products and make the problem worse. Always clean your cabinets and shelves regularly, and store dry foods in metal and glass containers with tightly fitting lids and seals. 

Insecticides and Pesticides

While pesticides and insecticides can help you get rid of pantry pests, they can be harmful if not mixed or used without professional help. Therefore, please don’t use them unless you’re guided by a professional.

Final Verdict

Pantry pests are a nuisance and can cause considerable damage if not adequately controlled and eradicated. Although there are several techniques that homeowners can use to prevent and get rid of pantry pests, the whole process can be daunting and time-consuming.

For this reason, it is crucial to seek the services of experienced pest exterminators from Domain Pest Control if you detect pantry pests in your home.

Call the professionals today for a free quote!  

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