Tired of finding spoiled food in your fridge or wondering where that smell is coming from? Organize your refrigerator with these tips and ideas to reduce frustration and save money.
We’ve all been there at some point. Pulling out leftovers with mold, searching unsuccessfully for the soy sauce that you know is in there. Throwing away some rapidly decomposing vegetable that looks more like a liquid than anything really recognizable.
Even if you maintain a well-organized kitchen, the refrigerator can be an entirely different matter. Food takes on a life of its own, quite literally, and will spoil, stink, rot, and spill in your fridge no matter how immaculate the rest of your house is.
Having a cluttered, disorganized fridge costs you time and money.
All that time spent looking for the condiment you need is wasted time. Every time you toss rotten or moldy food into the trash can wastes money. It’s time to stop wasting time and money in your fridge.
7 Top Refrigerator Organization Tips You’ll Wish You’d Known Sooner
Here are 7 very practical refrigerator organization ideas to help turn your fridge into an organized zone where you no longer waste time or money.
Designate Areas for Certain Foods
If you take a quick search on the internet for how to organize your refrigerator, you are likely to find many different suggestions for what to put in each section of your refrigerator.
Instead of telling you exactly where to put the ketchup, I think it’s more important to suggest designating certain areas for types of foods.
Storing categories of foods together (dairy, produce, condiments) helps to make it faster and easier to find what you’re looking for.
Additional helpful storage ideas include:
- Putting any uncooked meat in a drawer or on a bottom shelf so that it won’t ruin other foods if juices leak.
- Keeping vegetables in crisper drawers keeps them contained and prevents them from getting “lost”.
- Condiments and small jars store well together and often work well in the shelves of the door.
- Takeout and leftovers work well on a shelf towards the front so that they are easy to see and reach.
- No matter you put things in your fridge, storing similar items together helps keep things organized and easy to find.
Use Clear Containers and Baskets
Another way to help you get (and stay) organized by category is to use clear containers and baskets with labels. This will help keep smaller and loose items together and contained.
“Are these leftovers still ok to eat?” This is where I went wrong for so long. I was asked that same question every single day until I started using labels.
Labels are the key to knowing which foods are older and need to be consumed first.
Use one when you put cheese into a bag, put a salad in a Tupperware container, and more. It also works well for canned foods, fresh foods, and leftovers, too!
Watch The Temperature
The door shelves tend to be the warmest (and most variable) spot in your fridge. When you organize your refrigerator, put juices and condiments in the door as they can handle the temperature variances without spoiling.
Milk and eggs should go on a shelf where they stay cooler (I’ll be right back after I move mine out of the door shelf).
Oldest to the Front
When you buy new items, such as a carton of milk, put the new items toward the back and the older items to the front so they can be used before they go bad. First in, first out.
Your labels will also help you keep an eye on how old your food is so you can be sure to use it before it spoils.
Store Snacks Where Your Kids Can Reach
Stop running to the fridge non-stop to pull out snacks for your children. If you have kids, an essential element to your refrigerator organization is to store snack foods where your kids can reach them independently.
Try using one of your fridge drawers or add a clear container or drawer to hold snacks.
Add a List
This will take a little bit of work on the front end. But it will go a long way toward helping you stay organized and uncluttered. It will even make preparing your grocery list faster.
Add a piece of paper to the front of your fridge (or a dry erase board – something you can write on). Keep track of how many you have of each item.
That way, with a quick glance, you’ll know when you need to buy something… and when you don’t.
If you’re ready to get your refrigerator organization under control, use these 7 tips to organize your refrigerator to help you get started. You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make for your frustration – and your wallet!