Spring is in the air and I decided to tackle deep cleaning my refrigerator this week. I shopped for the popular clear bin organizers that are out now but at 9 bucks a pop I did not want to make that type of investment. (They may be less elsewhere). Sure 9 bucks isn't much if you just need one. But, it could get a little pricey if you want to organize your entire refrigerator. Instead of making that investment, I used a few inexpensive items from the dollar store and got the job done for less than one clear bin.
I am not saying I will never invest in a different system to make my refrigerator more organized. However, I am very happy with the way mine turned out. And my total cost was just $6.25 plus tax. I took a very minimal approach to cleaning, decluttering and organizing my refrigerator. But the result has made things feel so much better.
For this project I purchased 8 midsize baskets from the Dollar Tree and 3 small ones. I actually ended up with one of the midsize baskets left over. I pulled all of the stickers off and cleaned each of the baskets in soap and water. While they were drying I tackled the refrigerator.
I pulled the trash can close and started to take everything out of the refrigerator. As I went, I checked dates and ingredients. This is the perfect time to get rid of items you are wanting to eliminate from your diet. And throw items away that are out dated.
Once I had everything out of the refrigerator it was time to start cleaning and sanitizing. I don't like to use a lot of chemicals in my home so I like to use a vinegar and water solution to sanitize when I can. It doesn't work for everything but it is a good natural option.
I sprayed down all of the surfaces in the refrigerator with the vinegar and water solution. Then I took out all of the shelves, drawers and other pieces (not really sure what you call them)! I then washed all of the pieces in warm soapy water and wiped down the inside of the fridge. I was amazed at how much grime hides under those drawers. It hadn't been that long since I cleaned but it was definitely time to do it again.
One of my main goals in doing this deep clean of my refrigerator was to stop wasting food. I noticed that I would waste food at times because I would forget that I had something on hand. And by the time I saw it again it had gone bad. Since I eat a lot of vegetables, they don't have as long of shelf life as other items. This is still something I am getting used to as a vegan. Now that things are neat and organized I can see what I have on hand quickly.
After I cleaned all of the surfaces of the refrigerator and the parts, I put everything back together. By then the baskets I purchased from Dollar Tree had dried. I was ready to get things organized. I tried to group items together that made sense, but it really depended on the size of the items and how they fit in the baskets. The midsize basket are the perfect size for soda cans and juice boxes. I added those to one basket.
The main thing this helped with was organizing my condiments. That is where the bulk of the clutter was for me. When I organized all of them in the baskets it cleared up so much space. I freed up an entire shelf that I can use for leftovers or new items I purchase.
This is how my refrigerator looked before I started. As you can see it is a mess! There are items everywhere. And there are things that I needed to get rid of. Near empty bottles. Outdated items. And I can't really tell what I have on hand. I would often have to dig around to find anything. This is slightly stressful.
This is how my refrigerator looks after. I didn't get a good picture of the bottom drawers but to see a full view check out the video of how I pulled it all together here
Now I can see everything in the refrigerator. Its clean and organized.
I hope that this inspires you! Thanks for reading.