This is day 9 of How to Live on One Income Guide. To read all the post in order start on Day 1 here.
Having a clean an organized fridge is crucial to easy meal preparation. Start by taking all the items out of the fridge. Next with warm soap and water, wash all of the surfaces and clean all the shelves and the drawers. Don’t forget to clean the front of the doors. Once the fridge is clean and sparkling from top to bottom, start loading the fridge with your items.
Tips to Creating an Organized Fridge
Before placing anything back in the fridge check the expiration date and toss anything that is old. Take special note of any condiments, these tend to sit in the fridge unattended for a while. Take care how and where you place the items back in the fridge. Condiments are usually on the side shelves, cheese and dairy in the cheese drawer and fruits and veggies in the bottom drawers for freshness.
In order to keep the fridge nice and tidy, it may be necessary to label each shelf to let others know where items belong. This saves time when preparing a meal if everyone puts items back where they are supposed to go. Here is a Fridge Inventory Printable you can use to make an inventory of items in the fridge. See my clean eating guide to learn how to create a clean eating fridge to eat healthier.
10 Tips to Creating an Organized Fridge
- Remove all items from the fridge before you start (cooler is helpful)
- Clean the shelves and side shelves. Wipe down all surfaces
- Place fruits and veggies in the bottom drawer (or best place for your fridge)
- Place dairy cheese, lunch meat in the cheese drawer
- Place condiments and small bottles in the door
- Label shelves so everyone knows where to put things back
- Clean the freezer. Wipe down all surfaces.
- Stack frozen veggies in a neat pile
- Meat should be placed at the bottom
- Label and keep track of freezer meals
Tips to Creating an Organized Freezer
Now do the same for the freezer part of the refrigerator. Clean out the ice try if you have an automatic ice maker. Especially that little tray that collects water in the fridge door. Load the freezer with meat on bottom shelf, frozen veggies on another and the snacks and treats on another if you have room. Also don’t forget if you have a deep freezer to clean and rotate items in there. Here is an easy way to defrost a freezer.
Make a list of any of the meals already prepared in the freezer. Having a well stocked freezer will save money to prevent going out to eat. Keep a list to know what is in the freezer and cross it off after that meal is finished. I like to bake and make extra meals on the weekends and freeze them for an easy go to meal. This way when I don’t feel like cooking I can just pull from my freezer instead of spending money at the drive thru.
[Go to day 10 of How to Live on One Income]