• Use bins: One of the biggest problems with a standard-size fridge is the fact that it’s easy to forget about the items hiding in the back. Use bins that are the depth of your fridge so you can easily organize the smaller items that are easy to lose track of. Label the bins for quick access to what’s inside.

  • Keep track of items that may spoil soon: Set aside one bin or an area in the fridge for items you expect to spoil soon. Check this area when you start cooking or are reaching for a snack to make sure nothing goes bad before you can eat it.

  • Label everything:Labeling food will help you keep track of what’s in your refrigerator and how long it’s been there – taking the guesswork out of leftovers. We recommend keeping painter’s tape and a permanent marker near the fridge for labeling. Painter’s tape comes off containers easily for simple cleanup. Take a cue from professional kitchens, and be sure to date your labels so you won’t have to remember which day you made chili for dinner.

  • Organize like the pros:Professional kitchens organize refrigerator space in two ways. First, they keep what needs to be used first closer to the front of the fridge. If you keep multiple containers of one product in the fridge, organize based on the sell-by dates, with the closest dates in the front. Second, they organize based on what will actually be cooked – meat and other raw items to be cooked are kept at the bottom of the fridge so any accidental leaks don’t contaminate something that won’t be cooked. Keep drinks and anything meant to be eaten without cooking at a higher level.

  • Line the shelves for easy cleaning:Line your fridge shelves with plastic wrap or fridge mats for easy fridge cleanup. Just remove and replace plastic wrap or wash the mats in the sink.

  • Know your fridge zones: The center is the coldest section of the fridge, so use this space to store your most perishable items. The door storage is always a little warmer than the rest of the fridge, meaning you should save that space for the least perishable items.

  • Use the freezer: A lot of leftovers can easily be frozen, so if you know it might be a while before you’ll eat something, put it in the freezer. Don’t forget to label and date it so you’ll remember what’s inside that container!

  • Clean it out regularly: At least once a month, set aside some time to go through the refrigerator and get rid of anything that has gone bad or that you know you won’t use in time.

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