1. Organise by meals, not ingredients
My number one hack is to organise your fridge based on meals as opposed to types of ingredients. From the moment you open the fridge door you’ll see breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks staring right at you. It not only speeds things up in the kitchen, but helps reduce food waste with each ingredient playing its part in each meal. Meal kit services like HelloFresh make this process even faster and easier by pre-sorting fresh ingredients into meal kit bags delivered to your door. With these you can have dinner on the table in as little as 15 minutes.
2. Magnetic meal planner
To take tip one to the next level - invest in a magnetic meal planner and whiteboard marker for your fridge door. It will not just help you stay organised, but also get you excited about upcoming meals. I have one on my fridge and find it helps save time with decision making after a long day!
3. Have healthy snacks at eye level
While the bottom draw crisper can keep things fresh, you don’t want all your healthy (and often perishable) food hidden out of sight. I encourage you to prep some healthy snacks, such as chopped carrots or celery, in sealed containers and leave them at eye sight at the top of the fridge. Following this approach from top shelf down to bottom will not only help you reach for healthier ingredients more often, but also save on food waste.
4. Eat NOW
Everyone’s favourite sustainable section (in my humble opinion). Having a dedicated ‘eat now’ section helps reduce food waste, and guilt! As the name implies, this area is for food nearing its expiry. Go on, eat it now.
5. Pack and stack using clear containers
Invest in some clear containers in a variety of shapes and sizes. The positives are endless: they create more space, keep food fresh for longer, reduce food waste… need I say more? Small boxes are great for used produce, i.e. half a tomato or avocado, while stackable microwave safe solutions are perfect for leftovers. I find it’s best to stick with one brand so you can easily interchange containers and lids.
6. Lazy Susan: Your best friend
You’re probably all familiar with a lazy Susan. The helpful turntable that helps you reach ingredients at the back of your pantry. But have you ever applied this logic to your fridge? Lazy Susan’s are a great solution for sauces, condiments and products that are banished to the back of the fridge never to be seen again.
7. Never run out of milk again
There’s nothing worse than opening the fridge in the morning to see you’ve run out of milk for your morning coffee. It can throw off your schedule and leave you feeling unprepared for the day ahead. Try keeping a spare bottle of long-life milk in the pantry for those rainy days. And remember - but first, coffee.
8. Clean less
Do you want to spend less time cleaning? I have just the trick for you. Get some clear reusable liners for your fridge shelves. Not only do they protect them from scratches. If there is a spill, simply take the liner out to wash instead of having to lean deep into the cold fridge to clean the mess.