Having a clean and organized fridge has made all of my meal preparations so much easier! Before we had our kitchen renovated I will admit that my fridge organization was rather sloppy (cringe). I used to store vegetables in freezer bags, there were leftovers in various containers and little bags of things stuffed in the drawers and shelves. Not good!
I found myself rummaging through the fridge trying to find the bits and pieces I needed to make dinner. This meant I was constantly wasting precious time and feeling frustrated. After being at work all day, the last thing I wanted to do was spend more time in the kitchen than necessary.
I promised myself that once I got my new kitchen, all this was going to change. Happily, I can report that I have lifted my fridge and kitchen organization game!!
Benefits of a Clean and Organized Fridge~
There are so many benefits to having a clean and organized fridge, these are just a few
1.Your Fridge will be more energy efficient
Keeping a fridge clean and organized will boost its cooling efficiency. If you fill your fridge until it is over flowing you will run the risk of blocking the air vents and impeding the airflow. This means that your poor fridge will quite possibly have a shorter life span.
2.You Will Save Money
Now, that’s a great reason if I ever heard one! When my fridge is clean and organised I can clearly see what food I have and what food I need to buy. Now, when I shop I don’t double up on things like vegetables which don’t have a very long life span.
I love mushrooms but because I used to store them incorrectly, they would get lost amongst the clutter and they would often go bad. I was constantly buying more mushrooms then finding poor dead mushrooms in the back of the fridge drawers.
The same applies to leftovers. Leftover food in small containers is hard to see if the fridge is full. It’s no fun finding these ‘science experiments’ weeks later, trust me!
3. You will feel ‘Good’
Having a clean and organized fridge gives me the same good feelings I get when the rooms in my home are tidy. I don’t feel annoyed and frustrated when I open my fridge anymore. I can easily find the ingredients I need and I’m not wasting time looking. Nothing sends my frustration level from zero to one hundred quicker than not being able to find something. just ask my family!
4. It’s Healthier For You
I think THE most important reason for keeping a fridge clean is to prevent the breeding of germs and bacteria. These nasties will cause food poisoning. Wiping up any spills straight away means my fridge won’t smell. In addition, I don’t waste time and energy scrubbing a spill that has been left to dry. Yuck!
5. Your Food Will Always Taste The Way It Should
Having a clean and organized fridge means there is less chance that overlooked food items will be left to rot. I know how awful rotting food smells especially anything containing dairy. Food like eggs can absorb the smells in the fridge and that’s bad news if things are smelling off in there. Food will taste fresh when there is no bad smell to contaminate it.
What I Do To Keep My Fridge Clean and Organized
1. Invest in good quality storage containers
Earlier this year when we bought our new fridge I also invested in some good quality storage containers. I was hesitant about spending so much money on plastic containers but I am so glad I did. It has been worth every cent!
Having nice proper storage containers for the fridge means that it is very easy to see what food items I actually have. In the past, I would just store most things in ugly freezer bags. I would ultimately overlook some things and then they would have to be thrown away.
All of the nice fridge containers I bought came from a shop in Sydney called Howards Storage World. They stock every conceivable storage container you could ever need.
Celery Container~ I always keep celery in the fridge as I love using it in my cooking, but I was always throwing away poor old limp celery into the bin. I found this fantastic celery container and although it is on the pricey side, I am happy to report that I have not thrown away any celery since! It keeps my celery fresh and crisp!! that’s right crisp. truly amazing!!
Berry/Grape Container~ Another container I bought is this one for grapes and berries. It has this cute basket insert which means that once the berries or grapes are washed and placed into the container they stay dry. The berries or grapes won’t be sitting in a puddle of water in the container causing them to deteriorate.
Lettuce Container~ I use this square container for lettuce. It keeps it fresh and crisp for a much longer period of time than just regular freezer bags. The other bonus is that there is no risk of ending up with smooshed lettuce underneath a pile of other things in the fridge. These square containers come with a lid and they are stackable, making everything fit and look nice inside the fridge.
Bits and Pieces Container~ I bought this cube container which I use to keep cheese, butter or other packaged food that has not been opened yet. That way I know exactly what I have and what I need to add to the shopping list. Everything sits neatly in this cube and that means there are no small packages of food floating around in different places around the fridge.
Shallow Tray for Fruit~ I use this shallow tray for fruit like apples, pears, and oranges. Because It’s shallow this means it’s easy for me and everyone else to reach inside the fridge without having to open any drawers or pull anything out to grab a piece of fruit.
2. Wipe Down Bottles and Jars
This is a simple but useful tip. We all know jars and bottles can get pretty sticky (Hello Tomato and BBQ sauce!!) so giving them a quick wipe before putting them in the fridge will stop the shelves from getting dirty.
3. Throw Things Out
Before I do a big shop I always go through my fridge and throw anything out that needs to go. I then give the shelves and interior a quick wipe with a damp microfiber cloth. Everything looks sparkly fresh and it means I don’t have to spend more time doing a deep clean.
Cleaning and throwing out old produce beforehand makes it easier for me when I get home from the shops. I get my things put away so much faster
Washing and Storing Fruit and Vegetables in the fridge
I like to wash my fruit and vegetables before I store them in the fridge. As soon as I get home from the supermarket I make sure I do this. I know some people go a step further and cut up vegetables etc and store them in containers. I’m not keen on this as I think that it might mean they perish faster, or turn brown.
Washing most of my vegetables and all of my fruit first saves me time. When I’m cooking, I know that whatever I pull out of the fridge is ready to be used. If someone feels like a piece of fruit, they can just take it out of the fridge and munch away!!
A Final Thought~
It’s very easy to get into bad habits and overlook important things like the fridge. But once you get into a routine and rhythm you will find that it is much easier to regularly maintain a clean and organized fridge, it will just become a daily habit. If you wait until it needs a deep clean, the job will be so much harder and way more time-consuming.
I’m a big believer in the saying “Inch by inch is a cinch. Yard by Yard is too hard”. If we break down the housework into smaller regular tasks it really is much more manageable!
Click here if you would like to read my tips for maintaining a neat and tidy home