Everyone in the Family Will Appreciate an Organized Refrigerator!
How many times do you open the refrigerator on a given day? The average American opens the fridge 22 times a day. How often does someone in your family say they can’t find something that you know is actually in the refrigerator? Do you ever feel a tad embarrassed when a guest opens your refrigerator? It’s true, filling space with groceries can easily take precedence over appearance and function when it comes to the fridge. However, with upfront planning, you can get – and keep your refrigerator neat and organized.
Organizing the Refrigerator Step-by-Step
Follow these steps to get your refrigerator organized. The end goals are functionality and maintainability, to be able to find what you are looking for when you need it and to keep your food fresh.
Our tips can also help keep the appearance tidy and maximize space. Use smart systems to keep organized. With an organized refrigerator, cooking, meal planning, and grocery shopping all become easier. Let’s get started!
1. Set aside some time to do the job right. You don’t want to feel rushed. Acknowledge you’re making an investment of time in a task that will bring rewards for everyone in the family.
2. A core principle at Getting it Done Organizing is to start with a clean slate. Remove everything from the refrigerator. Throw out anything that has expired. Use Clorox wipes or a disinfectant spray to wipe down all surfaces and clean out crumbs, sticky messes, or bacteria.
3. Establish “zones” for your food. Group like items, i.e. designate areas for sauces, condiments, grab-and-go snacks, cheese, fruits, vegetables, leftovers, drinks, etc.
Consider accessibility. For example, you might want the kids’ snacks to be low enough for self-serve.
Place commonly used items in the front of the shelves.
Milk and meat should be placed low, in the coldest area.
The door shelves are great for storing easy-to-grab snacks and condiments.
4. Invest in some smart storage. We recommend using clear containers in the refrigerator so you can easily see contents. You can find these in every shape and size and at every price point, but these are a few of our favorites.Find what works for your family. We like a tall cup to hold cheese sticks and long bins to hold apples.
We prefer specially designed produce keepers keep specific foods, like lettuce, fresh longer and are generally great stackers. Beverage can dispensers can save space and make for easy access. Drawer dividers are excellent for separating items in the big refrigerator drawers. Lazy Susans work great in deep spaces.
Invest in matching Tupperware or other food storage systems for easy stacking. Rectangular and square shaped containers maximize space better than round-shaped containers.
Don’t be afraid to use labels in the refrigerator. They can help everyone – young and old – recall what goes where.
5. Commit to doing a deep cleaning every few months to remind yourself of the satisfaction that comes with a clean refrigerator. The job will be easier after the first time given your new organizational system. If you stay with your every-few-months cleaning cadence, you’ll find you have fewer expired items to sort out as well.
6. Finally, establish the habit with your family. Educate everyone on the zones and ask for their help in keeping the order. Create habits that items go back to the same place every time and make sure each person does their part to maintain the zones. Don’t switch things around on everybody!
Looking for some virtual encouragement before you begin? Check out Jenny’s recent appearance on Dallas-based WFAA’s morning show where gave her Refrigerator Organization 101 rundown.
Take some time to organize your refrigerator this week. You deserve those 22 daily door opens to result in pleasant, efficient experiences. Don’t underestimate the value of an organized fridge. Everyone in the family will benefit from the order and cleanliness – especially you!