No one likes to open their refrigerator and see a bunch of clutter. You’ve been looking for a way to organize your fridge and finally, you’re starting to pull everything out. You find yourself in the dreaded “fridge purgatory” where nothing is organized and there’s no clear path forward. It’s frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be this way. We have some great tips that will help you on your journey of getting your fridge back in order.
What Are the Things to Put Inside Your Fridge
When you’re organizing your fridge, it’s important to know what should go inside.
The first thing that we recommend is a list of the things that are often in our fridges:
- Drinks (soda, coffee)
- Oatmeal and other breakfast cereals
- Herbs, spices, sauces, or condiments like ketchup or mustard for dipping fries into from time to time.
Once you have these items on hand they’re easy enough to put back with ease. This will help you stay organized when cooking because all of your ingredients will be at arm’s reach without having to get up again–or bend over awkwardly–to find them. It also ensures that they’ll stay fresh and last longer.
- The next thing to consider is the type of food items you have in your fridge. If it’s just breakfast foods, keep them all together on one shelf or drawer–unless they’re more likely to spoil if left too close. You can also separate certain types of produce by color (e.g., vegetables versus berries) so that everything stays fresher for a little bit longer. This will allow you to see what needs replacing without having to dig around through everything else first like eggs or lunch meat that might be hiding inside a different section with other similar products tucked away from sight.
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In the freezer, you should keep food that doesn’t need to be cooked before eating like frozen vegetables or prepared dinners. It’s also a great place for ice cream. The only exception is if it’s an open-freezer (not insulated) as freezing can cause foods to get soggy and lose their original flavor.
One thing I love about my fridge is how much space there is in it. There are so many ways you could use this extra room too: storing more fruits and veggies than usual, going crazy with your condiment collection, organizing school lunches–the possibilities are endless. What do people think?
It might seem daunting at first but don’t worry because we’re here to help you take on the challenge. Get ready to take your fridge from cluttered and hard to navigate, to a place of ease where everything is in its proper place.
How to Organize Your Fridge
- Take everything out of the fridge and start organizing from there. Get rid of old leftovers or veggies that are past their prime. You’ll find yourself more apt to throw things away, rather than toss them into a half-empty drawer in the fridge and forget about them again next week when you’re looking for something else.
- Organize sauces with lids on one shelf so they don’t get lost at the back of the top shelf where condiments typically go. Add small containers to keep bottles upright and separated by type (ketchup, mayonnaise).
- Put all produce together in one area – fruits near fruit, vegetables near vegetables, etc. This will help prevent unnecessary food waste due to spoilage.
- Keep a list of what needs to be used up on the fridge so you can easily check your grocery list and remove anything that’s already past its expiration date or is no longer edible
- Get rid of any old containers from take-out food, condiments, or other items such as butter.
- Put all refrigerated medications together in one area for easy access – oftentimes they are not stored in an optimal manner due to lack of space but this will help make them easier to find when needed. Remember they’re proper storage requirements.
- Cleaning helps prevent mold building up which could lead to dangerous health risks; clean once per week with baking soda and water. Rinse well then dry thoroughly using a paper towel
- Prevent messes by storing produce in containers (such as old take-out food boxes) instead of plastic bags or loose on the shelf. This will also help keep them fresher, and longer.
- Store leftovers like sauces and soup at a higher temperature to slow down bacteria growth; either store them upright in an insulated container if space allows or place them into the freezer for later use.
- Keep items that are used daily within arm’s reach – they’re more likely to be eaten when you can easily grab them from your fridge door rather than opening up all the shelves just to get one thing.
- If you’re low on space, try storing your most used items in the freezer for easy access.
- Keep an inventory of what’s inside so that you know how to shop more efficiently and avoid duplicates.
- Especially if you have fresh produce like berries that are quickly spoiling, they can be frozen immediately after purchase for future use. This is also great for other perishables such as bread, cheese sticks, chicken breasts, etc.
- Don’t forget about organizing outside of your refrigerator too: try using a few hanging baskets or keeping other small items stored in a nearby pantry or cabinet.
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Quick Tips for You
Organizing your refrigerator can be so much easier if you know what’s going on inside it all year long.
- Schedule one day each season for deep cleaning (ex: Spring)
- Eat more leftovers during dinner time instead of buying extra food at the grocery store (saves money + less waste)
- Find an organizing system that works for you – this may require some trial and error before finding something that satisfies both functionality and aesthetic needs. You don’t have to follow “conventional wisdom” when deciding how space is used.
- Give your fridge a quick wipe down with some warm water and soap every week to help avoid smells or bacteria buildup
- Try keeping pantry items in the refrigerator, either by storing them inside containers within the shelves of your main appliance, or using separate storage bins for each category (ex: produce)
- Add labels. Labels will make everything easier to find – just be sure that they’re easy enough to remove when you want fresh-looking appliances again. To make this task quicker, use chalkboard paint on stickers so that you can reuse them over time without damaging any painted surfaces. Using label makers is also an option if labeling manually sounds too overwhelming.