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How to Organize Your Fridge for the Holidays — and the One Upgrade That Makes It Easy

updated Nov 23, 2022
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Credit: Photo: Christopher Broe; Stylist: Vanessa Vazquez

Nothing tests our kitchens’ capacities — or our stamina — quite like holiday cooking. We’re making more food for more people than at any other time of the year. Even when you love cooking (and we do!), the cycle of shopping-cooking-entertaining can get overwhelming. And when that happens, we like to organize the fridge.

Seriously! Organizing your fridge is a practical matter, sure, but it’s also a gift for your peace of mind. There’s no more frustration because you can’t spot the bowl of whipped cream behind the jug of egg nog; no more spilled cranberry sauce because it was balanced too precariously atop a takeout container. Spend a few minutes getting situated now, and you’ll be thanking your Past Self all season long.

While there’s no one-size-fits-all way to create order from your particular type of kitchen chaos, these tips set you up for success, as demonstrated by a fridge that’s the stuff of dream kitchens: the Smart InstaView® Counter-Depth MAX French Door Refrigerator from LG.

There’s a lot of advice out there about how to organize your fridge around uneven cold and hot spots (hello, frozen jar of pickles). But that’s a nonissue with the Counter-Depth MAX. It uses three cooling systems to keep a consistent temperature that’s accurate to within 1ºF everywhere, so you can store whatever you want wherever you want. And with a slim counter-depth design and 26 cubic feet of strategically designed storage space, it easily handles even the biggest holiday feasts while keeping everything accessible. Let’s take a peek inside — and get organized.

Credit: Photo: Christopher Broe; Stylist: Vanessa Vazquez

Create zones that make sense for you.

We like to think of the fridge as a small grocery store with “aisles” and “departments” of related items. Keeping things grouped in zones makes it much easier to see what you have and helps you stay on track when it’s meal prep time. Keep it simple by using basic categories like dairy, berries, and snacks. Then, for the busy holiday season, do yourself a favor by storing all the ingredients for one meal or recipe together. (As an added bonus, this might prevent your spouse from snacking on the cheese you have earmarked for gougères.)

Credit: Photo: Christopher Broe; Stylist: Vanessa Vazquez

Put food safety first!

While this fridge’s cooling system really does let you put anything anywhere you want, we are going to politely suggest that you keep raw meat and seafood on the bottom shelf. Storing these items as low as possible prevents juice from dripping onto other foods, and keeping them in a dedicated clear bin or tray adds extra cross-contamination insurance. Now is also a good time to make sure your shelves can accommodate those extra-large cuts of meat that can dominate our refrigerators this time of year. The Counter-Depth MAX‘s modular shelves make plenty of room for your Christmas turkey and your New Year’s rib roast.

Credit: Photo: Christopher Broe; Stylist: Vanessa Vazquez

Think at eye level.

It’s easy to lose sight of leftovers and smaller items amidst all the holiday groceries — which could mean some unpleasant discoveries in January. Store any foods that you don’t want to forget about, like your favorite dessert, right at eye level to keep them top of mind. The Counter-Depth MAX takes this logic to the next level with its InstaView® window: Just knock on the door for an LED-lit, edge-to-edge look inside. (Hi there, little cornichons.)

Credit: Photo: Christopher Broe; Stylist: Vanessa Vazquez

Let your freezer help you plan ahead.

From extra batches of pie dough to heat-and-eat party snacks, our freezers are also working overtime this season. That goes double if you’re the kind of cook who preps ahead. This fridge has the most storage space of any counter-depth design out there, which includes its double-decker drawer freezer.

We like to group frozen snacks and ice cream together in the top drawer, then fill the bottom with prepped ingredients for a freeze en place that’s ready to go when you are. And because you never want to run out of ice during a party, make sure you’ve made room for extra trays — or just rely on the Counter-Depth MAX‘s dual ice makers to keep everyone’s glasses filled.