A clean, organized fridge filled mostly with produce

Every January, I like to do a fridge deep clean. It just happens to coincide with the time of the year when we are all craving a bit more organization and a few more veggies—so it really is the perfect time to dive into such a project.

It’s a perfect mental, visual, and literal reset for your eating. Trust me, it’s a lot easier to eat a well-balanced diet when your fridge doesn’t look like this.

Brunette woman sitting in front of an open fridge with a mop bucket and bottle of cleaner

So grab your rubber gloves and a wicked big trash bag (you know you have some science experiments hanging out in there), and let’s get to work. First up, we gotta get to cleaning.

Empty it all out

Out with the old, in with the new! You need to literally pull every single thing out of that fridge. Toss anything that is expired or iffy. I also recommend tossing anything you don’t want to eat (or donating if it isn’t opened). We feed a lot of stuff to our chickens and the compost gods during fridge clean-out day.

Open empty fridge, with all the contents on the floor in front of it

Clean it all up

While everything is out, go ahead and do a deep clean. I fill up a bucket and go to town, washing every surface in the fridge.

You might be tempted to skip this step, but trust me, there is something about a sparkling clean fridge that just inspires better eating. And while it’s all empty, you might as well, right?

Empty refrigerator shelves that have been cleaned

Get Organized

Now it’s time to put everything back in. To organize my fridge, I stocked up on all shapes and sizes of clear fridge bins. These bins are great because they help divide up the space while still keeping the goodies in clear view.

Refrigerator shelf with herbs in a jar, mini bell peppers in a clear bin, and a carton of almond milk

Break Out of the Crisper

These clear bins also help you expand past your crisper drawer.  Fruits and veggies are supposed to be at least half of what’s on our plate, but the crisper drawers are maybe 20% of the fridge—it doesn’t make sense! So don’t limit yourself to just the crisper drawers. Use bins and shelves to store fruits and veggies throughout the fridge.

Close-up of crisper drawers filled with vegetables

Also, if you happen to have a fridge with an opaque crisper (I did at my last house), use those drawers for other foods—cheese, meats, eggs—and move the fruits and veggies up and out to the light of day! Every time you open that fridge, you want to be inspired by all the colorful produce waiting for you. Opaque crispers are where produce goes to die.

Store Fruits and Veggies at Eye Level

I highly recommend prepping your snacking fruits and veggies when you get home from the grocery store. Wash them, chop them, and store them in clear glass food storage containers (which I also grabbed at Meijer) at eye level. Just like with the clear bins, having these fresh fruits and veggies ready to go and visible makes them the easy choice—and with all of our busy lives, the easy choice so often wins when it comes to what’s on our plates.

Close up of produce organized into glass containers in a refrigerator

And it’s that simple!

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  1. I’m SO excited right now because I HAVE THAT SAME EXACT FRIDGE! And I’ve been wanting to organize it but struggling to figure out how to do it well. Thanks for being my inspiration!

    May I ask what dimensions those bins are that you have the peppers in? I’m having a lil analysis paralysis in deciding which organizers to buy… =P

    Also, where do your leftovers go?

    1. Hi, Brandie! You can find the square bins that the bell peppers are in here, and the tall bins that the sweet peppers are in here. Unfortunately neither listing has the dimensions, but similar products are showing 8x8x6 for the square bins and 12x6x8 for the tall bins. Hopefully that helps! Also, any leftovers get stored in glass food storage containers throughout the week. Have fun with your fridge organization! =)

        1. You’re welcome to put things behind the bins, but make sure it’s something you won’t forget about! Or you can use more of the long bins to give yourself deeper storage space instead of the square ones. Hope this helps!

  2. When I lived in Illinois, I discovered Meijer! And I fell in love! Definitely one stop shopping! I now live in Tennessee and I missthat store so much!