The refrigerator is one of those areas in the house that likes to fall into chaos. Simply put the shopping away quickly without a system, put the rest of the dinner in the tin randomly on the shelf and next time you won’t find what you are looking for, some of the products cannot be reached because they are delivered or you forget complete them until they spoil. It’s maddening! Are you fed up with this mess and finally want to organize your refrigerator? We would like to help you with a few tips and tricks!
Creating order in the refrigerator – the preparation
Before you can even tidy up the refrigerator, you need to prepare it. To do this, do the following:
Of course, you cannot keep the refrigerator clean and tidy if all the products are still inside and you just push them back and forth. So start with the refrigerator as you would with any other cupboard – you clear everything out! This is the only way you can then easily re-sort and, above all:
Clean the refrigerator!
This is the next important step. The refrigerator should be cleaned thoroughly on a regular basis anyway and of course that works best when it is completely empty. Rinse the glass inserts and the eggshell, wipe all compartments and walls and also pay attention to the corners. Use your usual cleaner or a solution of vinegar and water if you prefer natural cleaning products. It is important that it is an antibacterial agent. You now have the best foundation for keeping your refrigerator tidy. Here’s how you can do it:
Fridge tidiness – tips
Now you come to the actual tidying up, sorting and ordering. This is how quick and easy it is to organize your refrigerator:
Sort out the existing products
Go through all of the products you took out of the refrigerator earlier. Even if some do not want to admit it, there are always products such as barbecue sauces or opened tomato paste that have lingered in the refrigerator for a while and have been forgotten. You can dispose of all such products and, of course, all other spoiled products. Please note, however, that an expired best-before date does not mean that the food can actually no longer be eaten (exceptions are those with the indication “use by”). By the way, you can read here how long unrefrigerated food can be kept.
You can also clean sauces and other products in screw-top jars and bottles that you will still be storing. What is meant is that which has dried on, which you simply wipe off the bottle necks and lids. Think of the inside as well. This is important not only to keep the refrigerator tidy, but also to maintain basic hygiene.
Arrange the refrigerator in the right order
Now group all the products that you have kept in order to create the right order in the refrigerator. As you probably know, every food group has its place in the refrigerator: The vegetable drawer naturally stores fruit and vegetables, and meat, sausage and other perishable foods just above it, because this is the coldest place in the refrigerator. All other dairy products are placed in the middle and at the top, where it is warmest, food that has already been prepared and opened and partially opened can be stowed away. Cheese is also allowed there.
And what about the compartments in the door? The area in the door is exposed to small temperature fluctuations from time to time when it is opened and closed. For this reason, you should keep products there that do not mind. Usually this is where the eggs, drinks and sauces are located. The butter can also be stored there. Most of the time the temperature there is 8 degrees, but that can of course vary depending on the individual settings.
You can now divide your products into these groups on the kitchen table or in another convenient place in order to get an overview and easier to organize in the refrigerator.
I want everything back in the fridge?
Before you start tidying up the fridge, here are a few more tips:
- Products that you probably have several of (e.g. butter, cream, sausage, cheese) should be placed in the refrigerator in the correct order. This means that those that will expire sooner should be placed earlier so that you can use them up sooner. Always keep this refrigerator organization system when you buy new groceries and put them in the refrigerator.
- Many products that you put in the refrigerator out of habit actually have no place there or do not need to be stowed there. Tomatoes, potatoes, aubergines, avocados, cucumbers and onions, for example, also last a long time outside. Tomatoes also emit gases that make other vegetables spoil faster. Berries and citrus fruits lose their aroma in the cold, while eggs even lose their vitamins. Eggs can easily be stored outside the refrigerator for three weeks. After that, however, these must also be cooled.
Tidying up the fridge – hacks
We have just explained the right refrigerator organization systems to you. Are there any other handy tricks you can use to keep your refrigerator tidy??
- Even though open products always come first, do you keep forgetting to eat them first? Use boxes to keep the fridge tidy! For example, label them with “eat this first” and put open or perishable food in there.
- Want to keep the sauces upside down in the fridge door so you can use them faster, but that way you always fall over when you open and close the door? Put them in an egg box!
- There’s still an open yogurt, but you don’t remember how long it was open? No more forgetting, because you can mark any product with simple labels. Or you can just use a marker pen to write the date on the packaging. But you should always do this if you want to keep your refrigerator tidy.
- You have now created a system and everything is finally in order in the refrigerator. But that doesn’t help if everyone in the house doesn’t pull along. To ensure that everyone really adheres to the system, it can be helpful to label the compartments and drawers with sticky notes or labels. So everyone knows where the dairy products, sausages and sauces belong.
- As much as you plan, it happens again and again that products are added that were not planned in this way. Therefore, try to leave an empty space in the refrigerator where you can stow spontaneous purchases or leftovers without falling into chaos again because all other products have to be rearranged as well.
Was there a power failure? This is how long the food can be kept in the refrigerator.