The 5 Best Fridge and Freezer Organizing Lessons We Learned in 2021

published Dec 5, 2021
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A fully-stocked, well-organized refrigerator is a thing of beauty. And we’re not the only ones who think so. There’s an entire hashtag devoted to gorgeous fridge interiors. With many of us still working (and eating) from home, a fridge is one of the most trafficked areas of the entire kitchen. So, naturally, we spent a lot of time this year learning about ways to better store our perishable groceries. These are the top five fridge — and freezer — organizing lessons we learned in 2021.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Prop Styling: Tom Hoerup

1. Condiments don’t necessarily belong on the fridge door.

Most fridge doors we open up are loaded condiments. (Too many condiments, if you ask us. You probably don’t need all those open jars of mustard!) But back in September, a TikTok video went viral because @domesticblisters had a better idea: She keeps her condiments in the crisper drawer and puts her fruits, veggies, snacks, and drinks front and center on the side door.

Read more: The Smart Fridge Hack That’ll Help You Eat Your Fruits & Veggies (and Waste Less Produce!)

Credit: Heather McClees Williams

2. You can use a cutting board to create more shelf space.

Wish you had just one more shelf in your fridge? Make one by placing a cutting board on top of similarly tall items.

Read more: I Started Keeping a Cutting Board in the Fridge — And You Should Too

3. Your top freezer has built-in organizers.

If you have the type of fridge-freezer combo with the freezer on top, be prepared to have your mind blown. Ready? Those freezers have little ridges along the bottom. And they’re meant to help you file packages of meat vertically.

Credit: Sarah Crowley

4. Butter boxes can be upcycled as organizers for your fridge door.

Don’t be so fast to toss your empty butter boxes in the cardboard recycling. Instead, you can rip off the tabs on the end and use them to hold string cheese, yogurt tubes, ketchup packets, and other small items that somehow manage to make quite a mess.

Read more: The Last Thing You Should Do with the Cardboard Box Your Sticks of Butter Came In

Credit: Joe Lingeman

5. Your freezer should be divided up into zones.

John and Sherri Monte, owners of Elegant Simplicity, an interior design and professional home organizing firm in Seattle, gave us their best tips for wrangling a messy freezer. They had a few really smart ideas, but the one that stands out the most is the idea to think of your freezer in zones and group food accordingly. Some of their most-used zones: premade meals, soups, fish, meat, veggies, fruits, and desserts.

Read more: 5 Easy-to-Steal Freezer Tips from Professional Organizers

Did you come across any brilliant tips for organizing your fridge or freezer this year? Tell us in the comments below.