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

updated Apr 22, 2021
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Credit: Kitchn

Last year, when the pandemic hit, it was clear that grocery shopping habits would change for many of us. For me, it meant fewer trips to the store and bigger-than-usual hauls. And this, in turn, meant a very full refrigerator. I quickly realized that I needed a new, creative way to keep my fridge both stocked and organized at the same time.

Which brings me to my greatest aha moment yet: I added an entire extra shelf to my fridge just by sliding in a cutting board! Not only does this create additional storage space out of thin air, but it also helps me see everything I have so nothing goes to waste. Let’s take a look.

Credit: Heather McClees Williams

As you can see, I tend to stock up on the things I know I’ll use (such as organic kefir, organic grass-fed milk, and lots of yogurt). I also always have lots of fruits, vegetables, and salad greens. And these things can fill up a fridge … quickly.

By placing a cutting board toward the back of the fridge on top of the tall items — like milk or kefir in my case — I’ve created an extra shelf just like that! (You can even a cute kitchen tray or a half or quarter baking sheet.)

I make my “shelf” even more useful by making a rule for it: The only things that can go on it are the things that need to be used ASAP. For example, I use it for yogurts that are dated to expire soon, freshly cut fruit or vegetables I need to eat right now, or leftovers that should be prioritized.

Maybe you don’t buy quite as many milks at once as I do. I get it. You can still use this tip! Just put the cutting board across a few similarly shaped things. You can span the board over a few yogurts, or a couple of leftover containers, or even a full casserole dish.

It’s been more than a year and I can happily say that I’m still using this cutting-board-as-shelf storage method. And I don’t see that changing anytime soon — even if I do eventually start grocery shopping more frequently.

Do you have any super-smart fridge organizing tips? Tell us in the comments below!