How To Organise Your Fridge
How to store food in a fridge can be a bit of a minefield, especially when you have a busy household and want to avoid food waste. We’ve teamed up with the super-tidy Nicola Lewis of This Girl Can Organise to put together a 101 on how to master fridge perfection, from making the most of your fridge layout to storing food in a way that’s safe to eat.
Little things can go a long way when it comes to keeping your fridge tip-top…
Layout of a domestic refrigerator – You can optimise both the space in your fridge and the life of products by choosing a regular place for everything.
Fridge Friday – Pick a day of the week to go through your fridge and dispose of anything that is out of date or no longer edible. This will help keep your fridge fresh and avoid the growth of mould or harmful bacteria.
Room temperature – Not everything benefits from being in the fridge, so consider what really needs to be in there. Tomatoes and onions, for example, can be left out of the fridge. A less cluttered fridge will also be a healthier one.
Food safety – Keep raw and cooked foods separate as much as possible. By refrigerating raw meat and fish, as well as fruits and vegetables in the correct way, you can minimise the risk of food poisoning.
Temperature settings – Having a fridge set too cold can result in the surfaces freezing over and condensation forming every time the fridge door opens and warm air gets in.
Clean your fridge weekly – Wipe down drawers and surfaces with a disinfectant every week. This prevents a build-up of old food and consequently bacteria.
Hot food – Never put hot food in the fridge as this will cause the temperature level to rise and result in food spoilage. Wait until the food has cooled before placing it in the fridge.
How to store eggs?
Some people store eggs outside the fridge, but they can be kept inside on the middle shelf. A cool, stable temperature helps to avoid bacteria growth. They can also be left in their cardboard container, preventing breakage and keeping the shells clean and dry. Due to naturally occurring air bubbles in eggs, turning each egg upside down (with the more pointy end facing downwards) can also keep them fresher for longer. Finally, avoid putting empty eggshells back in the box as this can lead to harmful bacteria on the remaining eggs, making them unsafe to eat.
How to store snacks
Snacks for the week ahead can be prepped the day before so that they’re ready to go: chop vegetables like celery and carrots, and store in jars filled with water, to keep their crunch.
How to store drinks and condiments
Drinks and condiments are best stored in the side door. These items last the longest, and the warmer temperature here won’t impact them too much.
How to store leftovers
Leftovers are best stored on the top shelf. It’s slightly warmer than the middle shelf, but that’s OK for prepared food eaten within three to four days after being made. Store them in an airtight plastic container or in a bowl covered with cling film or a reusable air-tight lid. Some leftovers require special attention if you are planning on keeping them for later. Rice, for example, can develop harmful bacteria so it’s important to let it cool completely before refrigerating and it also shouldn’t be kept for longer than 24 hours.
How to store milk
Milk belongs in the coldest part of the fridge, to extend its life use the back corner of the bottom shelf, not the side door
How to store deli and dairy
Deli and dairy should be stored on the bottom shelf in a container to keep them away from everything else. Raw meat is also best stored on the bottom shelf; it’s vital to keep it away from other foods, including other raw meat, so wrap securely or place in a sealed container.
How to store vegetables and fruit
Vegetables and fruit keep best in the bottom drawers as it’s the spot where there’s the least humidity. If your vegetables tend to go bad, try washing and drying them before storing.
What should you not put in the fridge?
Onions, bananas, potatoes and garlic shouldn’t go in the fridge as the extra moisture can cause them to rot. Tomatoes should be left out to ripen.
Whatever the size of your fridge or how much you need to store in it, by following these simple tips and getting your fridge routine down, you can keep food fresher for longer while making everything easier to find. Fridgetastic!