Hello Fitsme users! As you are using our app and spending more time in the kitchen cooking, I’m sure that all of you could use some tips on organizing the fridge.
Organizing your refrigerator can help you be more efficient by cutting the time it takes to search for ingredients/snacks, save money by avoiding the mistake of buying food you already have, and stay safe by preventing cross contamination and keeping spoiled foods unhidden. In fact—coming from a person who manages a restaurant—proper refrigeration storage is an essential part of food safety inspections (see figure 1). But most of all, a clean and organized fridge simply makes you feel good.
Figure 1- San Francisco Department of Public Health’s guideline for proper refrigeration storage.
Here are some tips to organize your fridge provided by the Food Network:
- Ever wonder where are the coldest spots in the refrigerator? They’re in the back near the freezer compartment. Store foods that require colder temperatures, like dairy, eggs, and raw meat, around there.
- To avoid cross contamination, place raw meat, poultry, and seafood in containers, bins, or tightly sealed bags. This will prevent blood and juices from dripping on foods below. If you have a food allergy in the house and want to be extra careful, place them on the lowest shelf.
- Create shortcuts in your fridge like you would on your desktop and smartphone. Keep the condiments and sauces you use regularly on the door where you have easy access, while stashing items you rarely use in the back of the fridge (just be sure to check on them every now and then).
- You don’t have to go on a scavenger hunt every time you cook. Group similar items together to cut down the time it takes searching for them and avoid mistakenly buying food you already have. Some group examples are: spreads, dressings, pickled items, and ethnic ingredients.
- Have a bunch of knick knacks scattered around your fridge? Bins are also useful for gathering those loose items that don’t stack nicely, like tubes of tomato paste and string cheese.
- Place taller containers in the back and shorter ones in the front so it’s easier to see them.
- Still got half a jar of tomato sauce left? Arrange items that need to be used up towards the front.
- Tight on vertical space? Those wine bottles should fit in your deli drawers
- Invest in containers that are see-through and stack easily. It’ll help you find what you want and make your fridge look more organized.
- Leftovers? Place them in microwave-safe containers and remember to label them with their name and expiration dates. Also, group the leftovers together in one section so that you know where they are as opposed to letting them slowly migrate to the back of the fridge where you’ll forget about them.
Also, if you can’t figure out whether or not something belongs in the refrigerator, here are farmers’ markets tips on storing fruits and vegetables—this will surely free up some space. Now start organizing!
-By Brian Van