By streamlining your refrigerator organisation, you optimise its efficiency, saving both time and money in the process. This attention to proper food storage promotes a healthier lifestyle, minimising foodborne illness risks. Moreover, conscientious organization techniques foster sustainability and reduce food waste, embodying a greener approach to living.
Unlock freshness and reduce waste — get your fridge organised.
Did you know the longevity and freshness of your food can be significantly enhanced simply by positioning them on the appropriate shelf within your fridge? A well-organised fridge helps you save time and money and ensures that your food stays fresh for longer – a win-win! Efficient organisation can reduce food waste, lower energy consumption, and even simplify meal planning. Read on for our top tips for organising your fridge to optimise space, maintain freshness, and improve overall efficiency.
Clean and declutter
Start by emptying your fridge and giving it a thorough cleaning. Remove all the shelves and drawers, and clean them with warm, soapy water. Wipe down the interior walls and the coils at the back of the fridge (if you have them). Before putting items back in, check expiration dates and dispose of anything that's expired or no longer usable.
Organise by zones
Divide your fridge into different zones based on temperature and usage. This can help maintain food safety and extend the shelf life of your items. Here's a suggested layout:
- Upper shelves: Place ready-to-eat foods, leftovers, and drinks here. This area has a more consistent temperature, making it suitable for cooked and prepared foods.
- Lower shelves: This is the coldest part of the fridge, ideal for raw meat, poultry, and seafood. Store them in sealed containers or plastic bags to prevent cross-contamination.
- Crisper drawers: These are designed to maintain the right level of humidity for fruits and vegetables. Keep them separated into two drawers, as some fruits release ethylene
Efficient Fridge Storage
Store dairy products correctly
Dairy products should be kept in a slightly cooler area of the fridge to maintain their freshness. Place items such as milk, cheese, and yoghurt on the middle shelves or in a designated dairy compartment if your fridge has one. Store butter and soft cheeses in airtight containers to prevent odours from other foods affecting their taste.
Keep condiments and jars in the door
The fridge door is the warmest area, making it suitable for storing condiments, sauces, and pickles. Arrange these items in the door compartments, ensuring that taller jars are on the bottom shelf to prevent them from tipping over. Store frequently used items at eye level for easy access.
Use clear containers and labels
Transparent containers allow you to see their contents without having to open them. This can save time when searching for ingredients and helps you keep track of what's in your fridge.
Labelling containers with the date and contents makes it easier to practice the "first in, first out" method. With clear information about what's inside and when it was stored, you can prioritize consuming items that are nearing their expiration date, ensuring that your food stays fresh and safe to eat.
Keep an inventory
Make a list of what's in your fridge to help track expiration dates and avoid buying duplicates. Including expiration or "best before" dates in your inventory helps you identify items that need to be consumed soon, ensuring food safety and minimizing waste.
Start by choosing a method that works best for you, such as a paper list, whiteboard, or a digital app on your smartphone. Some apps are specifically designed for tracking food inventory and can even send reminders when items are about to expire.
Remember to categorize your inventory list by categories such as fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats, and leftovers. This makes it easier to locate specific items and plan meals accordingly.
Take a few minutes each week to review your inventory and plan meals accordingly. This helps you stay on top of expiration dates and ensures that you're using the items you have on hand.