Our fridge has big responsibilities. Keep the food for the six hungry souls that live in my house cold, not rotten, and looking good. Most days our fridge is bursting at the seams with fresh food, leftovers, homemade playdough, and, thanks our new bearded dragon named Spike, some mealworms!
You know the feeling. Open the fridge door, pray something doesn’t fall out, search around for what you think may be in there, grab it, carefully balancing the surrounding items, quickly shut the door, and pray nothing falls out! But as the first of my Small Steps Spring Clean Up, my fridge got a deep clean! I created 4 simple to follow steps for you to spring clean yours!
Step 1: Take everything out!
Remove every single item from your fridge. Every bottle of dressing, piece of produce, container of unknown leftovers. Everything. Out on the counter. Unsure of how long something can stay in your fridge? Check the “use by” date or look it up on Foodsaftey.gov!
Be realistic on what you are actually going to use. A tube of fancy schmancy tomato paste was taking up precious space in our fridge and deep down I knew it was never going to make it’s way into a recipe again. It made it’s way into the trash! Throw out what you aren’t going use, compost the half dead produce.
Step 2: Clean every nook and cranny of your empty fridge.
Once all of the contents were on my kitchen countertop, I cleaned with my Norwex cloth and some Thieves cleaner. I’m a believer. Don’t judge. Or get yourself some Clorox…just be sure it’s safe to put your food back in.
Wipe down all the shelves, remove the drawers and wash, wipe down the “body” of the fridge. Make that thing sparkle!
Step 3: Put it all back together!
When putting all of the goods back into the fridge, place healthy good for you eats on the middle shelves. When you are looking to grab a quick bite to eat having healthy options at eye level is key!
Cut fruits and veggies, hardboiled eggs are quick and simple snacks to have on hand!
Step Four: Be sure to utilize your crisper drawers correctly!
I had never paid attention to what goes where in those produce drawers. Anything went where it could fit. But I sat down, educated myself on why there are two different settings “vegetable” and “fruit”, and now I’m teaching you! The vegetable setting does not allow air to circulate, increasing humidity levels, thus causing higher levels of ethylene gas (emitted by some fruits and vegetables) to accumulate. Higher ethylene gas levels are perfect to help some fruits and veggies stay fresh but can cause others to rot more easily. Here’s a simple graphic to help decide which produce goes in which drawer!
Now that your fridge is sparkly clean, your fruits and veggies are housed properly, you are ready to eat well!
If you want even more fridge clean out tips, check out these refrigerator organization hacks!!