I bet your walk-in pantry looks just like the one in the photo. Right… Mine too.
What we see on Houzz and Pinterest may be incredibly awesome but they're typically designed for someone else. Someone who lives very different than you and I. These are not the walk-in pantries I want to talk about. You'll find that blog @ milliondollarpantries.com (totally made that up).
Most of us that have walk-in pantries have much smaller, less glamorous spaces that may appear to be providing great storage until you break the space down a bit. The ones we commonly see in homes are usually dominated by negative space (the space our bodies take up); shallow, wire shelves and a lot of air leaving us with less actual storage. Even the wall thickness may be robbing us of space we could be using. The truth is that they were built in order to reduce the amount of kitchen cabinets, counter-top, etc., reducing costs for the builder.
Sometimes we can achieve more efficient storage and a larger kitchen by eliminating the walk-in. It's not the right thing for every kitchen but look at the example "before and after" pictures below. The deletion of the pantry was one of the major contributors that gave us a much improved layout and larger kitchen.
The same concept applies to both walk-in pantries and standard, non-walk-in pantries built out of studs & sheetrock. Cabinet pantries have the flexibility to have roll-out shelves and other customizations inside. The most popular option is installing simple roll-out shelves which means that you can pull the contents of the pantry out to you instead of having to dig through the back to see what's been hiding there since the 90's. Other customization options like vertical storage or areas for small appliances are easy adds as well. Like the above "after" photo, cabinet pantries also provide a cohesive look which adds to the feeling of a larger space since they have cabinet fronts just like the rest of your kitchen.