Hands up if you’ve ever found yourself rushing to the shops in a panic because the ingredient you thought was in the fridge and really, really needed actually wasn’t there?
We’ve all done it (well, most of us!). It’s the kind of stress we could all do without. But you could reduce the chances of that happening, as well as keep your food fresh and reduce waste, by having a more organised fridge.
Read below for some great tips and ideas on how to keep your fridge organised.
The fridge door’s not the best place for milk
Most of us keep milk in the fridge door. But milk actually goes off a lot quicker if you keep it there, as it’s the warmest place in the fridge.
You’re better off keeping dairy products (except butter, which is fine in the fridge door) and other perishables in the middle or lower shelves, where it’s colder and they will stay fresher.
Wait, what? Isn’t the fridge just one temperature?
You’d be forgiven for thinking that your fridge is just one temperature. But it’s not. The coldest part is at the bottom and the warmest is at the top.
Professional kitchens have to be very strict about hygiene − not to mention freshness. So, they arrange food in their fridges according to the principle that the higher the temperature an ingredient needs to be cooked at before it’s safe to eat, then the lower in the fridge it should be stored. So, things like opened jars of marmalade can be kept in the higher parts, while raw meat and fish should go on the bottom shelves.
Keeping meat in the bottom shelves also prevents any unwanted dripping and cross-contamination.
Waste not, want not
It’s awful when lovely food you’d been looking forward to enjoying has to be thrown out because it’s gone out of date.
This can sometimes happen because people have a tendency to accidentally push older items to the back and out-of-view when they put something new in the fridge. Experts recommend rotating fridge items according to their use-by dates. It’s also a good idea to store anything that's already open in plain sight, so that you don’t forget to use it.
Don’t overfill your fridge
We all love a full fridge. And rightly so. But there is such a thing as a fridge being too full.
Air needs to circulate around the fridge to keep everything cool. If a fridge is stuffed, it can create warm spots and increase the chances of spoilage.
If you completely stuff a fridge, there’s also a chance that things towards the back might get forgotten about and go off, which is a crying shame!
Make cleaning easier
It’s never nice when your fridge starts to smell a bit because food has gone off or something has spilled.
Cleaning your fridge the conventional way can be a real hassle. So how about this for a nifty trick? Cover your shelves with plastic wrap or cling film. When spills happen, just peel it off and throw it away! Alternatively, you can use easy-to-wipe mats.
Give it a label
You might know exactly where everything should go in your fridge, but does everyone else in your household? You can remind them and help keep your fridge organised by labelling shelves so that they know where they should be putting (and returning!) things.
Don’t keep vegetables and fruit in the same place
Did you know that some fruits let off a chemical that can cause vegetables to spoil?
Some food can cause broccoli, potatoes, asparagus, carrots and green beans to ripen and then go off quickly, so it’s best to keep fruit and veg in separate drawers in the crisper section of your fridge.
Take a picture
We don’t always have time to make a shopping list. But having the convenience of cameras on our phones means we can quickly take a picture of the inside of the fridge to know what does or doesn’t need buying at the shops.
There’s even new home hub technology - like the Samsung Family Hub™ Fridge Freezer - that allows you to digitally keep track of food expiry dates through an app!