We are talking about my favorite hobby- organizing! Today, it’s all about the fridge. Insert doom day music. The refrigerator, I’m sure in many houses, literally houses everything! From drinks, and leftovers, to random hot sauces and even fast food dipping sauces that some people (cough, cough, my husband) like to keep. For me, it just screams chaos, and I need a more zen feeling when opening those doors. You can achieve this with a couple of tricks and some fun containers that keep things organized. Now, I will be completely upfront with you; the fridge in the kitchen caters to pretty much just my husband and me. With the kids at school all day, I created a fresh, grab and go, and prepped meal layout that makes it easy for us during the week. So let me show you how you can transform a busy fridge into a clean and panic-free design using some of my favorite containers and tips and tricks.
Photos by Dayna Studios
Now, if you were like me, I had so much food go to waste. We are the type of household that needs to plan for the week; otherwise, it’s a full fridge of chaos. With so many containers and jars piled up, I often found myself buying dijon mustard for the second time in one week. Or the best is when you think you have something but learn it’s empty. Little hands somehow can’t make it from the fridge to the garbage. I knew there had to be a system that would work for us. This situation may not work for you, but I bet it will! It just takes a little prep, weekly cleanouts, and pretty clear containers. Also, it does help if you have an outside fridge. That is where I keep most of the condiments, drinks, meats for the week, leftovers, back stock, etc.
CLEAN AND THROW OUT!
1st things 1st, clean out your fridge. Take it all out, and organize it. This is the time to get rid of expired items, gross jelly mixed with peanut butter that you let your son make his lunch himself, and any questionable items that are nearing the end. Tip: If you have more than one of the same items, either join together or create a pile of back stock you can put in another fridge. I bet you will have half of what you started with after this step.
INVEST IN CONTAINERS!
Let me ask you something. Do you enjoy looking at plastic wrapped veggies and paper packages in your fridge? How about opening your fridge without seeing all that and an organized bounty of fruits and veggies? This is the time when containers come in. My fridge categories include: fruit, veggies, eggs, infused waters, drinks, snacks, herbs, and prepped meals for the week. Not only will you be able to see all your groceries, but they will all be in a uniformed matter that makes it easy on the eyes. I turn to the Container Store and W&P.
I have to gush a minute on W&P. I’m so in love with their reusable products. Not only are they stylish, but they are BPA-free, dishwasher, microwave safe, and freezer safe too! These are my go-to products to use for our weekly meal prep. I store everything from veggies to grains to fresh cut-up citrus. So we have to get them out and make our bowls for lunch. The same goes for the kids, I will prep mixed berries for them the night before and store them in the Seal Tight Bowls, and they grab them out the following day for breakfast. Along with veggies for a grab and go for lunch in the Porter Bags. Meal prep the night before and storing in the fridge saves a lot of time. W&P has a ton of collections to help you get started; check them out here!
I’m a HORRIBLE water consumer-like HORRIBLE. It has to be infused with herbs and citrus, or there is no chance. So every night, I will prep and make myself infused waters for the next day. For on-the-go bottles, I use the Porter Water Bottle. All I have to do is grab them out of the fridge. Then, for times that I’m just at home, I created a little lazy Susan situation using cups and filling them with fresh herbs from my garden so I can grab and make it at home. Check out W&P insulated cups; they are my everything right now! This infused water has also been an excellent idea for my daughter; she will drink more water with berries and mint.
For storing fresh produce, I like to use The Home Edit’s clear produce and berry bins. Each bin includes a removable drainage tray to keep moisture away from produce, preserving the freshness of fruits and vegetables. Perfectly modular to make the most of refrigerator space and clear, so contents are always viewable. I get home from the store, wash my produce, let them dry on a paper towel, put them in their trays, and tuck them away in a rainbow-colored row. Seeing the produce, there is no chance the fruit and veggies will last more than a few days in my house. They see it; they will come. Also, among those bins are eggs nestled cutely in an egg bin.
DIVIDE YOUR FRUIT AND VEGGIES!
Did you know that most fruits produce a gas that can cause vegetables to decompose faster? So to help with that, I separate everyone. Everyone gets a home. I put all my veggies in the crisp drawers and then all the fruit above in clear containers. I put cherry tomatoes up with the fruit, but my daughter eats them like candy, so they are usually gone in a couple of days. For the veggies, I like to organize them in rainbow style. Why? Cause it’s just pretty, that’s all.
SO with a couple of little tricks and tips, you can achieve this look. For the sides, you can put some condiments over there. Ours is usually filled with juices, everyday sauces, smoothie powders, and meal prep. Since I have been doing this, we have been eating a bounty of fresh goodies every day. That is not to say there are no unhealthy treats for the kids in the garage fridge. Not only will your fridge be clean, pretty, and organized, but you will also find yourself consuming more fresh food and saving money by not hoarding your fridge! One last trick: if you have any outside fridge in which you store more items like leftovers, be sure to clean that out weekly as well!
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