What’s up everyone?! Time to talk about one of my favorite things- ORGANIZATION. We all know that I have a touch of OCD. Okay, well maybe more than a touch. Things have to be a certain way or it drives me nuts. I have been known to reorganize a closet or bedroom just because I can’t sleep. Organizing is relaxing and therapeutic for me. If I can turn an unorganized messy area into a more functional, useful area, I feel so accomplished. So, today I’m sharing one of my latest organization overhauls. One afternoon I decided it was time to reorganize the kitchen refrigerator. The fridge can be a black hole for some people. Some people come home from the grocery store, take everything out of the bags and just shove it in there. That’s not functional for me. I can’t find things when I need them and it’s hard to take an inventory of what you have and what you need to pick up when you run out to the store next. You know, I can be a little OCD and crazy about things like that. If you read my Laundry Room Closet Organization post, you’ll get an idea 😉
So, everyone will organize their refrigerator a little differently than other people. But, there are a few things that every person should know about how you lay out your food and drink. Time to get to the refrigerator cleaning and organizing hacks!
- Items that need constant cold, in order to remain in full quality, like milk, should not be placed on the door shelving units. Every time you open the door, you would be swinging that milk into room temperature air. If you have a child, toddler, or lazy husband, you know that those fridge doors can remain open for EVER while they try to decide what they want. Sometimes they get left open in general. Your milk should stay towards the back of the fridge. Those doors cause too much fluctuation in the temperature of the milk and it will go bad faster.
- If you have the humidity controlled crisper drawers, use them. Things that tend to rot need to go in the low humidity setting. Things like apples, ripe bananas, avocados and pears should be kept in those drawers. Keeping them in the drawers closed, keeps the gases that those kinds of foods like to emit, trapped inside. Essentially, this is supposed to keep them fresher longer since the gas can not escape.
The drawers that have a higher humidity setting should contain items that like to wilt. These would be things like strawberries, cucumber, lettuce, spinach and other leafy foods. Keeping the high humidity drawer closed with these items in, will keep the moisture locked in the drawer and help those foods stay crisp longer.
- Raw Meat should always be stored on the lowest shelf space possible. Do not store raw meat on the top shelf of the fridge. The risk for contamination increases greatly. Just think about what could happen if that ground beef starts dripping down the fridge. Think about how many other things it could ruin and spoil. The higher up it is, the more area you’ll have to clean up too!
- Keep your fridge at 40 degrees F or lower. If you keep it any warmer, you increase the risk of bacteria growing. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
- Keep your refrigerator as decluttered as possible. In order for the fridge to work and do its job. The air needs to move throughout the fridge freely, so it can keep the items inside nice and cold.
- Keep foods whole until you’re ready to use them. Cutting up the fruit, veggies, etc, exposes them and decreases the amount of time needed to make them go bad or spoil.
Now, for three of my own personal organizing tips!
- Try to keep drinks in one area. This helps limit the time spent searching for a drink.
- Organize by food groups. We keep all the cheese items, such as, cheese slices, sticks and shredded cheese all in a bin together. All of our deli meats and other sandwich meats all stay tucked in the refrigerator bin together as well. I can easily pull out the bin and make whatever kind of sandwich anybody needs.
- Organize everything with the label facing outward. This helps for many reasons. Inventory can be taken in a flash. Items usually have their expiration date on the front of the label as well. This helps you know what items need to be used and by what date.
- Use organization bins. These make organizing and storing even easier. Plus, they’re much more aesthetically pleasing. I’ll link to the ones we use in the bottom of the post!
- Use labels on the bins. We don’t currently use labels on them…… ONLY because I’m pretty sure my husband would ship me off to the looney bin. He makes fun of my organizing and persistent placement of things, but, that’s how I operate. I’m completely honest about it though 😉
- Use fridge mats or liners! These are cleaning and time life savers. I am currently in the middle of switching mine out, so you won’t see them in the post. But, I will link to a couple of the ones that I have used at the bottom.
- One of the things I have started doing to help while I am grocery shopping: Take a picture of the items in your refrigerator or pantry before you leave. This will help you make sure you don’t buy an item if you already have it. I can’t tell you how many times I have bought butter sticks because I just couldn’t remember how many I had left. I do the same things with items in the pantry. So, I make sure to snap a picture of that too before I head to the car.
- If you have a Stainless Steel Refrigerator, I am sure you know that they smudge in no time. If you have children, they smudge even faster. I know when I am in the kitchen cooking, my hands get dirty and I always seem to need something from the fridge and I’ll end up leaving finger prints on there. So, I’ve tried so many cleaners out there to keep the fridge looking clean. Nothing seemed to work as good as something I had already had in the house. To find out what item that is and to rid yourself of the endless cleaning of the stainless steel appliances, check out the magical stainless steel appliance cleaner post! Our daughter is on the move now and loves running through the kitchen in her walker and smearing her little fingers all over everything! This cleaner is a L-I-F-E-S-A-V-E-R!!!!!
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