How to Organize the Fridge and Freezer {The Household Organization Diet}

Hey guys! I hope you all had a great weekend and are ready to continue on with The HouseholdOrganization Diet.  I’m not losing anyone, am I?  You can do it!!!

Great tips for cleaning and organizing the fridge and freezer!
Today we will be working on how to organize the fridge and freezer.  The main idea when re-organizing your fridge is to maximize your space in order to make your food more accessible and minimize food waste.  I did some major fridge re-organization about two years ago but have made a few changes.  Here is my new and improved fridge!

Lots of tips on how to organize your fridge and freezer!  // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
Cleaning Supplies:
  • microfiber cloth
  • Norwex window cloth
  • Bowl of warm water with some dish soap added
To clean out the fridge, I usually just do a couple of shelves at a time so that the food is not out for too long and I don’t have to leave the fridge door open for too long.  Remove food in the section that you are working on.  Remove the shelves and bins and wash in the sink if able.  Wipe the remaining parts on the fridge with your microfiber cloth and warm dish soap water.  Dry with the window cloth.  When you are replacing your food, keep like items together as much as possible.  Make sure you are checking expiry labels and looking for food that may have gone back before replacing it in the fridge.

I love using bins to help organize things.  Bins that run the full depth of the fridge work much better for me than smaller bins as you can pull everything out without having to remove any other items.  It also prevents little items from getting stuck in the back of the fridge and forgotten!  The white bin on the second shelf stores up to two loafs of bread {or a loaf of bread and bagels or buns} as well as tortillas.  No more partially used bread bags stuck in the back of the fridge!

Lots of tips and tricks to organize your fridge and freezer!  // via Clean and Scentsible  #kitchenorganization
The clean bins on the top shelf are from Bed, Bath, and Beyond.  They were not cheap but I just picked up one at a time and they always seem to have 20% off coupons.  I love the egg holder as there is a solid top so you can always place items on top if the fridge is really full.  The other thing that I love about it is that it holds 16 eggs so if you have a few left over and then buy another dozen they still all fit.

Lots of tips and tricks to help you organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
The yogurt bin on the bottom is also from Bed, Bath, and Beyond.  Since my husband is a vegetarian, our protein drawer holds mostly veggie ground “meat”, tofu, and other meat alternatives.  The kids and I do eat a lot of chicken but it is usually frozen.  Raw meat is best stored on the lower shelf to prevent any drips on food below.

Lots of tips and tricks to organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
We store all of our leftovers on the second shelf in these Ikea storage bins.  They have removable dividers to separate food if need be and we can fit four of them in {plus there is still room in front of them}  I also like having the leftovers stored in clear containers so I can see what is in them.  For extra fruits and veggies that do not fit in the crispers, I have an extra crisper unit that fits in this shelf as well{purchased from WalMart}

Lots of tips and tricks to help organize your fridge and freezer!
I like to take my fruit and veggies out of their bags and containers when possible.  I also like the idea of storing lettuce and other cut up vegetables in mason jars like this post from Salad in a Jar.

Lots of tips and tricks to help organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible
It would make it so much easier to take salads for lunches as well!

I know that there are MANY opinions on how to store and preserve shelf life for fruits and vegetables and I won’t really get in to that as it is not my area of expertise.  I usually do two produce runs to the grocery store per week {one big shop and one quickie shop} so I do not have to worry too much about it lasting for long periods of time.

  I try to wash the fruit before putting it away in the fridge after grocery shopping .  I use the Norwex Fruit and Veggie wash and also just found this DIY natural fruit and veggie wash that I want to try.  {**Note: Washing fruits can decrease their shelf life; however, for our family, I find that it is more likely to be eaten if it is washed and ready to go and the fruit wash does help with extending shelf life**}

Lots of tips and tricks to help you organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
I have a basket in the fruit section and also have a couple of berry and grape containers that fit in there as well.  A lot of the fruit can be stored in a fruit bowl outside of the fridge so there is often room in here for extra veggies.

I have a couple of bins in the veggie drawer as well to hold cut up veggies and another one for onions.  Again, cut vegetables will tend to spoil a little quicker but it makes them so much easier to grab and eat that it is worth it for us.

Lots of tips and tricks to help organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
I store my milk in the door as well as many of the condiments.  I have read that it is best to store the milk in the fridge rather than on the door so it is in a colder section of the fridge but it fits so much better in the door and I have never had a problem with it not being cold.  Maybe this is more of an issue in warmer climates or maybe it is because we go through the milk so fast but, in any case, it works great for us.

Lots of tips and tricks to organize your fridge and freezer!
I also like having the lazy susan in the fridge – it really makes it so much easier to reach those items in the back.  Just give it a quick spin!

Lots of tips and tricks to organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
I used some vinyl and my Silhouette machine to create all of the labels for the bins…

Lots of tips and tricks to help you organize the fridge and freezer!
….and also have one on the outside of the fridge.

Lots of tips and tricks to help keep your fridge and freezer clean and organized!
To clean the stainless steel, I use the Norwex window cloth and a little bit of water.  It works better than any of the other cleaners that I have tried and is quick and easy to do.

Freezer
For our freezer we have two pull out bins {we also have a deep freeze but that is another post all in itself!}.  The bottom one is the biggest and holds most of the food.  I just added the blue stackable bins – one for frozen veggies…

Lots of tips and tricks to help keep your fridge and freezer organized!
…and one for frozen fruit.

Lots of tips and tricks to help keep you fridge and freezer organized!
These little packaging toppers are a favorite of mine – no more peas and corn all over the bottom of the freezer!

Lots of tips and tricks to help keep your fridge organized!
I received these as a gift but I have seen them at Safeway and Home Sense.
I also saw a DIY version on Pinterest.  Unfortunately it just leads to a photo link but if you happen to know where this is from, please let me know!  It seems fairly self-explanatory though.

Lots of tips and tricks to help organize your fridge and freezer!
{source}

The top pull out shelf mostly just holds the ice, frozen juices, and some ice cream treats.

Lots of tips and tricks to help keep your fridge and freezer organized!
Maintenance
As with all organization projects, the key is always in the maintenance!  I find that the best time to do fridge maintenance is right before I head to the grocery store.  Here are a few things to do before you go:
  • Do a quick clean up of expired or spoiled food.  This also gives you a good idea of what you need to buy at the store.
  • Give shelves and bins a quick wipe down when they are less full.
  • Look for foods that need to be used up in the next couple of days.  You can then plan meals that will use those foods so they don’t go to waste.
  • Try to grocery shop when you know that you will have time to put things away properly {yes, I know that this is not always possible!}
  • Store newer items towards the back so that the old items get used up first.
Lots of tips and tricks to organize your fridge and freezer! // via Clean and Scentsible #kitchenorganization
Hopefully that isn’t fridge overload!!  Any other fridge organizing tips that you have found helpful?  Let us know!

**This post is part of my Household Organization Diet series.  You can join in anytime – just start with these two posts here and here.  If you are looking for past projects, you can find them all on my Pinterest board.**

Happy Organizing!
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Comments

  1. says

    like the idea of the labels:) might have to make some! I’ll be honest..I spot shop the grocery store once or even twice a week so we never have an excessive amount of food..so it’s easier to organize and keep clean. Also..side by side fridges are SO small! I’m not sure the containers would give more or less space.

  2. says

    Well this came at the perfect time. Today is my fridge and freezer clean up day. Gave me some nice ideas. Thanks again for this wonderful Household Diet! It’s working perfectly.

  3. says

    Great ideas! I am looking forward to seeing how you organize your deep freeze. Mine is always a disaster and I have to move piles of things to get to any item.

  4. says

    I am so amazed- what a nice and neat fridge. Mine definitely has order to it already – but could never look like this based on the sole fact that our ENTIRE top shelf is drinks- milk, tea cooler, iced tea, OJ and water.. so impressive

  5. says

    I guess I need to find some pull out bins. Everything hides in the back and I am also short and have to look under the glass shelves to find things. I have to wait till saturday to do this, but I am looking forward to trying out the lazy susan also.

  6. says

    You have such great tips! I think that if I ever did get my fridge looking that nice, my family would mess it up in no time! Who knows though, maybe it would inspire them to keep it clean!

  7. says

    It is SO smart to use the lazy susan! Who would have thought! I am drooling over your wonderfully organized fridge! You may have just inspired me!!!
    :o)
    Jaime

  8. says

    My fridge isn’t very wide – in fact, it’s not large enough for us, but our kitchen isn’t very big and we don’t fancy having a large appliance like that anywhere else. I’ve tried the separate storage compartments, but it didn’t work well for our unit. I like the idea of cutting the screw tops off plastic bottles to make re-sealable spouts for bagged foods. I would label the tops so I can spot the contents easily.

  9. says

    I’ve looked at lots of images of frig. Organization over the last couple of days (spring cleaning) and yours is my fav!:) Love it!! Where did you get the white baskets??

  10. Linda Carr says

    I love so many of your ideas, the mason jars, the sliding trays, the storage bins and the turntable. I have a lot of these already, just never thought of using them in this manner. I also love that you find these things at affordable places where I already shop and not some expensive shops. The economy, the creativity, you’re the best. I love your blog.

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