Leftovers gobbling up space in your refrigerator? Here are some tips for keeping things organized, efficient, and tasty.
A well-organized refrigerator keeps food fresh longer and lets you grab and go faster. Before you unpack groceries, spend a second thinking about the right place for everything.
Here are common sense ways to declutter and organize your fridge:
- The front of the middle rack, near eye-level, is prime refrigerator real estate. Put priority items there, like leftovers you want eaten soon and healthy snacks. The back of the fridge is the coldest part. Store milk there, and it will stay fresh longer.
- Don’t waste fridge space on food that doesn’t need to be chilled. Examples: fresh eggs from backyard chickens (though store-bought eggs do need refrigerating), ketchup, vinegar, jam, mayonnaise, and butter. Put those items in the pantry. You can store fresh eggs in a bowl on the counter for eight weeks.
- Never put tomatoes in fridge, or they’ll get mushy; onions will soften; honey will thicken; potatoes will turn too starchy. Keep onions and potatoes in separate paper bags and store in a cool, dark place (a lower cabinet drawer is great).
- Rectangular or square bins are your friends (round ones waste space, so don’t use them). Designate one for healthy snacks and another for breakfast foods like bagels and cream cheese. In the freezer, use one big bin for frozen veggies, rather than stuff individual bags into the freezer.
- Use plastic placemats as shelf liners, which makes cleanup easier.
- Place drippy food, like red meat and seafood, on the bottom shelf. That way it won’t drip too far.