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A clean refrigerator is not only is nice to look at but it also helps make cooking, meal planning and prepping a little easier. Put this task on a weekly schedule with your menu planning and grocery shopping and your refrigerator will be clean and it’ll be easy to see what you have on hand.
Empty the refrigerator – take everything out and check dates and decide if there is anything that you aren’t going to use.
Toss anything with expired expiration dates and anything that is past its prime. Bring your garbage can over to the fridge if you need to.
- Put items that will return to the fridge categories: fruit, veggies, beverages, leftovers, meal prep, condiments (I separate these by savory and sweet), dairy – whatever makes sense for your family.
- Remove drawers and shelves if needed/possible – bring them to the sink and wash or wipe clean and thoroughly dry.
QUICK TIP: If you cannot figure out how to remove a shelf or drawer, do a quick internet search of your refrigerator model – you can usually find a YouTube video of someone showing how to do it.
- Wipe the refrigerator thoroughly. I use a bowl with a drop of dish soap and warm water – if the fridge is stinky, add a sprinkle (a teaspoon or so) of baking soda to the water/soap mixture.
- Vacuum with a CLEAN vacuum cleaner attachment if needed. Wipe the attachment clean with rubbing alcohol before using in the fridge/freezer. This method gets all the crumbs, dog hair, whatever else you find in the crevices and crannies of the fridge.
- Use a toothpick for tough spots – If you can’t get stuff stuck in the seals or crevices, a toothpick works well. Make sure you are using it almost parallel to the crevice so it doesn’t break off or puncture anything.
- Put everything back – as you put your food back, take care to put it back in zones that make sense for your food needs. This works best before you fill up the refrigerator with your weekly groceries. Now I’m ready to head to the store and fill the shelves back up!
QUICK TIP: Moving forward, wipe down your refrigerator weekly as you’re doing a grocery list/menu planning. You’ll be able to maintain your clean fridge status and you won’t have nearly as much food waste. I do this on Friday as part of my Catch-All Day Routine.