Finding rotten food at the back of your refrigerator is unpleasant. Coming home from the grocery store with food you already have because your refrigerator is an unorganized mess is frustrating and a waste of money. With some simple organizational tips, you can avoid these issues and increase the efficiency of your refrigerator at the same time. Here are five to get you started:
- Schedule an inventory of your refrigerator contents at regular intervals. This is the ideal time to throw out expired food or combine two half-empty jars of the same thing. If you notice mold or a foul odor when you pick up a food item, err or the side of caution and throw it away.
- Don't place items in the refrigerator so close together that it impedes the free flow of air throughout each compartment. Placing your food efficiently allows the refrigerator motor to run less often, which means that the temperature remains more consistent.
- Consider using a “first in, first out” rotation system. That means placing the newest food items at the back of the refrigerator and the oldest ones in front. You also need to use the oldest food first for this system to work efficiently.
- Place leftover and opened food in tightly sealed containers to prevent the transfer of odor and flavor to other food in your refrigerator. If you don't have enough containers, bags with a zipper lock should do the trick.
- Wipe up food spills immediately with a damp cloth. Baking soda works well for tougher or caked-on stains. Be sure to use a mild or homemade detergent to prevent damaging the interior of your refrigerator.
If you have always taken a haphazard approach to organizing your refrigerator, the new year is the perfect time to implement these tips.