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Organizing Your Fridge with Baskets

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

{Featured at the Pinterest Power Party and at At Home with GCH.}

Are your refrigerator and freezer in need of a little TLC? Maybe you’re constantly throwing away food because you forgot it was there. Or perhaps you don’t have an organization system in place, so everyone ends up putting away items wherever they’ll fit, creating a messy looking fridge in the process. Or (whispering) maybe you know someone who has a science experiment growing in their fridge. (Not you. You would NEVER have moldy food in YOUR fridge. Right?) If you found yourself admitting to any of these things, then this is for you! {Or maybe you have a case of spring fever like me, and are getting a start on your spring cleaning and just want to freshen things up a bit after a cold, dreary winter.}

When I told my oldest daughter what I was blogging about today, she said, “I think we probably have the cutest fridge ever.” My youngest daughter agreed, “I love our fridge! It’s so cute!”

I’ll admit… we have a happy fridge. Like me, it loves the color aqua, and it appreciates that I am OCD enough to use labels and custom fridge mats/coasters/whatever you want to call them. You don’t have to label everything in your refrigerator, but it would love you for it if you did.

Ok, so you want your fridge looking fab? Here’s what you do:
  1. Toss any expired foods and science experiments.
  2. Take EVERYTHING out of your fridge. Put perishables in a cooler to keep cold.
  3. Clean the shelves, walls, and every nook & cranny.
  4. Group like items, and put each “set” of like items in a basket. {Read the FAQs and Helpful Hints to learn what I do.}
  5. Label the basket if you wish.
  6. Repeat steps 4 & 5 until finished.
  7. Repeat the above steps to organize your freezer.
  8. Do a happy dance, ’cause your fridge & freezer look awesome!
Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Q: Where did you get your baskets? A: Dollar Tree. Seriously. I bought 10 baskets for a buck each. Score!

2. Q: Where did you get those labels, and how do they hold up? A: I bought the labels at Staples. They’re from the Martha Stewart Home Office collection, and measure 1 3/4″ x 1 5/8″. They hold up very well – I “laminated” them. Why did I put quotations around ‘laminated’? Because I cheated. I don’t have a fancy schmancy laminator, so I used packing tape. I also used packing tape to affix the labels to the shelves and baskets.

3. Q: What on earth is a fridge mat/coaster/whatever you want to call it? A: Great question! I was perusing Pinterest (of course!) and came across a pin for this blog, and what did I do? Well, I ran right out to the store to buy plastic placemats to make my fridge look cute, too! (Ok, a lot of stores. Eight to be exact! I couldn’t find many places that sell them, and the ones that did didn’t have a pattern or color that I liked, so I ended up getting them at Walmart for $2 each.) They serve double duty, by the way. Not only do they liven the fridge up a bit, but they make clean-up a breeze! And they are easy to make: 1. Take the shelves out of the refrigerator. 2. Trace each piece on a placemat. 3. Cut out. 4. Set it in place. 5. Put shelves back. 6. Smile! {I like these so much, I’m doing the big shelves in my fridge next!}

4. Q: What “categories” did you use for your baskets and shelves? A: I’m happy to answer this. I’ll start on the top shelf and work my way down, then over to the shelves in the door.
  • milk & other beverages (This label is on the interior wall to the left of our milk.)
  • dips & condiment packages (This basket lives on the top shelf and is home to sour cream, ranch dip, cream cheese, and all of the condiment packages we’ve collected from fast food places. Don’t judge.)
  • snacks (This is the basket where we keep individual size snacks, like pudding, applesauce, fruit cups, etc.)
  • sandwich kit (This is a basket filled with deli meat and cheese slices. I have a hubby & school-age daughter that I pack lunches for every morning. Grabbing baskets makes this so easy!)
  • meat (This is the drawer where we keep our ground beef, steaks, roasts, etc.)
  • veggies for lunches (for daughter’s and hubby’s lunches)
  • fruit for lunches (for daughter’s and hubby’s lunches)
  • dinner helpers (This basket is where we store our crescent rolls, and other items that help make up our dinner menu.)
  • cheese (This is the basket where we keep all of our shredded, block, string, and spreadable cheese, and hubby’s cheese curds. We used to live in Wisconsin. Can you tell?)
  • fruit (Our fruit drawer has a bowl in it to separate the citrus & apples from the other fruit.)
  • veggies (This drawer is where we keep our refrigerator-loving veggies.)
  • butter
  • condiments
  • jams/jellies & salad dressing
  • juice
  • pop
…and in our freezer:
  • breakfast foods (basket)
  • frozen veggies (basket)
  • crock pot meals (basket)
  • meat (slide-out bin)
  • juice (shelf in door)
  • cold packs (shelf in door)
  • ice cream (shelf in door)
  • canned goods (shelf in door)

Helpful Hints:

As soon as I get home from the grocery store, I spend 30-60 minutes (it’s well worth it to save time later!) doing the following….

1. Produce is washed and put in different containers. If it’s fruit or veggies for weekday lunches, they get portioned, put into individual baggies, and put in the appropriate basket. If it’s not for lunch, it gets washed and stored in the fruit and veggie drawers.

2. Deli meats get taken out of their packaging, put into baggies, and get placed in the sandwich kit basket.

3. Outer packaging comes off of individually wrapped cheese slices, string cheese, butter, fruit cups, pudding cups, juice boxes, etc.

4. Anything else that needs to be portioned gets portioned, put in a baggie or container, and put away…chips, trail mix, large packages of ground beef that need to get divided in half/thirds, etc.

5. Pasta, cereal, flour, sugar, etc. get put into the appropriate containers in the pantry or baking cabinet.

This really does save time in the following days and weeks! 

I’d love to hear if you’re going to put some of these ideas to use in your home! Also, feel free to share pictures of your new and improved fridge with me! Just send me a message by visiting me on facebook, or emailing me at aprons.n.pearls at icloud dot com.

linked with:
PIN MEmeGrowing HomeChic on a Shoestring DecoratingNo Ordinary Blog HopOr so she saysSixSistersStuff.comPolkadot PrettiesIHeart OrganizingWise-Woman-Builds

18 Responses to “Organizing Your Fridge with Baskets”

  1. OK loving this idea! I'm so going to give this a try. I like the idea of bagging it all up when you get home from grocery shopping to make it easy for the kids to grab and go!

    Stopping by from pin me! Alexis from Running Away? I'll help you pack!

    1. You won't be sorry! I immediately noticed how much easier it made things when I started doing this a few years ago.

      P.S. Your blog's name is hilarious! I must go there now! :)

  2. What a great post! I would love for you to share this or any of your great ideas at the link party going on now (and every Saturday through Tuesday) at 'Or so she says ...' Hope to see you there!

    1. Hi Mariel! Thanks for stopping by :) I'd love to join you. I'll be right over!

  3. Thanks for sharing your wonderful tips and ideas! I love staying organized and the fridge shouldn't be left out of the fun!!

    1. Hi Selene! I agree. In fact, no part of our home should be left out of the fun! :) Thanks for stopping by! Have a great day!

  4. Oh, I am in love...This so beautiful because how many times a day do we open the fridge? To have a happy fridge greet meet would be such a treat!!! Thanks!

    1. Thanks, Lisa :) I just wish I could have snapped a better picture. It's so happy inside, but it's hard to get a good pic of my fridge! LOL Thanks for stopping by! Have a great day!

  5. This is such a great idea! No matter what I do, my fridge ends up a jumbled mess. Heading to Dollar Tree ASAP!

    Thanks so much!!


    1. Hi Christina! Thanks for dropping by :) Let me tell ya... the baskets have helped tremendously with keeping things in order! My family now puts stuff back where it belongs! Imagine that! LOL

  6. Newest follower here! I found you through the six sisters' stuff blog hop :) You have a super cute blog, I can't wait to read more. You can find me at


    1. Hi Melanie! Thank you, and thanks for stopping by! Looking forward to many more visits :) Have a great day!

  7. I want to find a basket (actually several of the same kind and color) that are long enough to span the shelf front to back, so that I don't have baskets in front of other baskets.
    Oh and for my freezer, I have been using plastic dishwashing bins as drawers.

    1. Hi Jenny! Dishwashing bins are a great & economical idea for the freezer! I found some great items at the Container Store that I want to pick up that fit what you're looking for. Might want to check them out :)


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