Let’s face it. For most people, their fridge is the grossest place in their kitchen.
Leftover food piles up all week until you can’t remember how many days it’s been sitting in the fridge. Bottles and jars drip onto the shelves below and make everything sticky and gross.
And then there’s that weird smell that’s been there for ages but you’ve never been able to pinpoint.
Don’t keep stuffing your fridge full of new groceries and leftovers! Get rid of all that clutter and organize your fridge with these 7 easy kitchen hacks!
7 Kitchen Hacks for Your Fridge!
1. Put Your Condiments in Squeeze Bottles
Instead of hassling over oddly shaped squeeze bottles and wide jars in the door shelves of your fridge, distribute your sauces and pastes into generic refillable squeeze bottles to easily store them on the shelves of your fridge door.
Don’t forget to label the bottles, though! You don’t want to confuse cherry sauce with tomato ketchup and ruin your ice cream sundae.
2. Use a Lazy Susan
A Lazy Susan makes it easy to reach jars and leftovers that tend to gravitate toward the back of your fridge… until that weird smell hits you and you realize it expired a week ago.
Put one on both shelves to make your drinks just as easily accessible as your leftovers, condiments, and jars. Never lose something in the back again!
3. Washable Mats for the Shelves
Your refrigerator shelves tend to get pretty gross after a while. Leftover soups and sauces spill over. Bottles and jars drip from above.
And if you have pets or kids, you probably need to be cleaning the shelves off at least once a week.
You can take the hard work out of the process by putting down washable plastic mats on the shelves or wrapping them in plastic wrap.
This way you’re not on your knees scrubbing the back of a fridge, you’re just rinsing off a mat and replacing it.
4. Group Foods Together with Baskets or Shoeboxes
You can group like items together in labeled shoeboxes to keep everything organized and available. If you want to incorporate this with the Lazy Susan idea, you can purchase smaller storage baskets that will fit on a spinner.
This ensures that nothing gets stuck in the back or lost in a random part of the fridge.
Store items that are about to expire in a special basket near the top so you never miss another expiration date.
5. Baking Soda to Keep It Fresh
Baking soda is a popular kitchen hack to get rid of bad smells in your fridge. It works by neutralizing the pH levels in the of the air in its surrounding environment.
Baking soda a base, meaning it has a very high pH level. Most foul food smells are highly acidic, meaning they have a low pH level.
Instead of covering up the smells with a different odor, the molecules released by the baking soda absorb and neutralize the odor particles in the air.
6. Don’t Let the Freezer Overflow
Use fabric shopping bags to organize heavy meats, frozen fruits, and boxed meals separately in the freezer. Don’t forget to label them for even more effective organization!
You can also clip opened vegetable bags under the wire-rack shelf in your freezer to prevent freezer burn and save more space. This also leaves more room open on the bottom of your freezer to store other items.
7. Put Food in the Right Places
Top Left Shelves
The highest half-shelf in your fridge is reserved for quick-expiring leftovers like dressed salads, leftover meats, hard boiled eggs, spaghetti, sandwiches, etc.
Just under this half-shelf, you’ll store your long shelf-life leftovers like dry vegetables, desserts, cheesy pasta, etc.
As a general rule of thumb, you’re storing the items that expire soonest at the top and putting the longest-lasting closer to the bottom. That way, the easiest thing to reach when you open the fridge are the items that are about to expire.
Top Right Shelf
This is the most open place in your fridge, so it’s generally best reserved for your tall bottles, milk jugs, and things that shouldn’t be tipped over.
If your fridge has wire-rack top shelves, you can put down a cutting board underneath your drinks for added stability.
The average-sized fridge typically has one higher drawer on the left side that’s reserved for bagged meats and cheeses.
Your lunch meats or uncooked meats like bacon and ground beef can be stored here but your leftovers should be stored in a separate container.
Always make sure meats and cheeses are stored separately in thoroughly sealed bags or containers to prevent oxygen from spoiling them.
Typically, the left side of your fridge will have a drawer hanging above the bottom shelf that gives you less room on that side. Store eggs and late-expiring short jars (pickles, jams, etc.) in this space.
You have more open space on the right side of this shelf in case you need to thaw a holiday turkey or roast overnight. But when you’re not using it for defrosting you can store any large leftover dishes or overflow from other drawers on this part of the shelf.
Crispers (Your Bottom Drawers)
Store fresh fruit and vegetables SEPARATELY in the lowest part of your fridge, the crisper drawers.
Never store fruit and vegetables in the same drawer and the same goes for meat and cheeses. Cross-contamination causes your foods to expire faster and could cause things to go bad without you realizing it.
The name of the game is Decluttering and Organizing. Don’t let your old foods pile up on you until your fridge is overflowing, use our easy kitchen hacks to save space and make items easily accessible.
A poorly organized fridge is a breeding ground for decaying foods to grow bacteria, and can potentially turn into a major health hazard.
Don’t get sick over something as easily remedied as a messy refrigerator, clean it up with our clever kitchen hacks and you’ll never look back!