fridge storage
Reduce food waste, keep abreast of inventory and cook faster, with a clutter-free, organised fridge. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Pretty and functional: your refrigerator can be aesthetically pleasing inside out, according to the latest social media trend. The hashtag '#fridgeorganisation' has over 1.9 billion views on TikTok, rife with non-verbal videos of people unpacking their grocery haul, washing their produce and wordlessly stocking their fridge using uniform, see-through bins of varying sizes.

The satisfying clatter of containers sliding back into the shelf, filled to the brim, has been an ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) of sorts for TikTok users, but there’s more to the appeal. You’re rewarded with a neat, colour-coded and space-saving refrigerator, where neither soggy lettuce nor rotten fruit hides from the eye.

Are fridge organisers worth it?

fridge storage
Storage solutions help you take stock of your inventory at a glance. Image Credit: Shutterstock

A Dubai-based licensed home organiser tells us how to steal the look and why you might want to add storage solutions to your fridge shelves. "I always say that every space in the house, be it the pantry or the fridge, needs to be organised to make inventory checks easier," said Sarah Nassar, who runs the home organising services So Neat by Sarah.

It only takes a quick peek inside the refrigerator to figure out what you need more of (or less!) before a grocery run. "For instance, I can look at the eggs container and note down if I need to replenish stock. Your fruit, dairy products, sauces and condiments all have a dedicated space - the bottles are not hidden at the back, so you get to see your fridge contents clearly," she added.

Not only does this help you reduce food waste but makes the fridge functional for the entire family. Because everything has its own rightful corner, cooking becomes a breeze, children know their snacks are grouped separately and everyone always has a clear idea of what item to put back where.

How do I organise my fridge?

fridge storage
Categorise your fridge and then buy containers accordingly, says our expert. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Before we start bulk ordering containers for produce and snacks, it's important to assess the kind of fridge you own. "The process begins with taking measurements of the fridge - is it wide or narrow? This helps you figure out how many containers it can fit. See if you can adjust the shelves to make room for more vertical space and stack up bins," said Nassar.

Then, divide each tier into sections for different food items. Nassar explained: "My first shelf always has ready-to-eat items, leftovers, freshly chopped fruit and vegetables that are for grab-and-go. The next shelf has my eggs tray, dairy products like butter and yoghurt, and cold cuts in stackable drawers with a specific one for cheese sticks for the kids. Then comes the cut fruit and vegetables in airtight containers; kale, spinach and herbs have their own special containers to keep them fresh for longer".

Make sure your storage solutions are cohesive. If your containers are clear and labelled, stick to the theme. There's no pressure to decant every item, though, like pouring milk into a clear flask, says Nassar. It all depends on whether you're capable of maintaining a regular system. The expiration dates, of course, have to be dutifully noted down on each decanted bottle.

It’s a commitment, but the end results make the time and effort all worth it. Another tip from Nassar is to always consume older produce first by pushing it to the front or top, when restocking. 

We drew up a list of storage solutions from Amazon that will help you achieve a TikTok-famous fridge overnight. Bag 10 per cent savings if you're a Citibank cardholder with the checkout code CB10DEC. Become a Prime member for free, speedy delivery.

1. Get lidless storage bins for snacks

fridge storage
These bins double as dispensers for packaged snacks. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Heyuzb Refrigerator Organiser Bins, Set of 8

FOOYOO Clear Fridge Organiser Bins Set, 10 Pieces

Greenco Clear Bins Stackable Storage Containers, Set of 8

Juice boxes, small yoghurt servings, chocolate bars and smoothies that come in their own original packaging would do well in lidless storage bins. Once filled, these clear bins can be stacked on top of each other to save space, while still offering a clear view to any peckish family member. "We want to make sure that the kids can reach the snacks they want easily," said Nassar. You could also use a few as dividers inside the crisp box to keep the vegetables and fruit separate. We've picked multiple sets of these bins that come with a pull-out design.

2. Decant berries and grapes into airtight containers

fridge storage
Get airtight containers with vent sliders. Image Credit: Shutterstock

LUXEAR Fresh Container, 3 Pack 

Progressive Fruit Vegetable Container, Clear, 1.1 Litres

Rubbermaid FreshWorks Produce Saver Food Storage Container, 4-Piece 

Give your finger food a good wash and rinse, and transfer it into sealed containers to keep the contents fresh for longer. You can extend the shelf life of produce like strawberries, blueberries and grapes in certain airtight fridge containers. Some of our picks come with colanders to wash your fruit in; others have a base water reservoir to keep herbs and radishes from drying out. These also come in handy with pre-cut vegetables that you might want to use for the week's meal plan.

3. Give your herbs a new home

herbs
Prolong your herbs in special containers. Image Credit: Unsplash/Thomas Rehehäuser

Prepara Herb Saver Storage Pods, Set of 3

Cole & Mason Fresh Herb Range Cut Herb Keeper

Progressive International ProKeeper Herb Keeper, 1 Piece

Speaking of herbs, greens such as coriander, parsley and mint spoil fast in the plastic bags they come in, quickly becoming soggy. Nassar uses special containers that have a water reservoir to keep the herbs hydrated and prolong their life. You could use cylindrical pods or tall bins, both of which easily fit in the door compartment of the fridge. Make sure to replace the water every three days to help the herbs last for weeks. Reviewers say their weeks-old dill and parsley keep as green as the day they were bought.

4. Separate your vegetables in stackable drawers

fridge storage
Tomatoes, carrots, capsicum and more can be stocked in separate drawers. Image Credit: Shutterstock

YekouMax Pantry Organisation and Storage Bins (2 Pack, Extra Large and Medium)

BINO Stackable Storage Drawer 

Opexscal Stackable Refrigerator Organiser Bins, Set of 2

Give each produce a home in individual stackable drawers. Unlike lidless storage bins, these containers are closed off and so make sliding drawers in and out much easier when stacked. Separating your produce by like items is a good way of preventing items from cross-contaminating each other. Add these to your main shelf space for cheeses, yoghurt, cold cuts, produce and anything that needs to grabbed quickly for use. Our YekouMax pick even has a lid vent to control humidity inside the drawers. Buyers have used the neat Opexscal stackable bins for their deli storage, too.

5. Add dispensers for bottles and canned beverages

beverages stock
Convert a section of your fridge into a mini vending machine. Image Credit: Unsplash/Shayna Douglas

Display Technologies Visi-FAST (Pack of 1)

mDesign Can Holder, Set of 2

Puricon 2 Pack Water Bottle Dispenser Organiser for Refrigerator

While you could stack your soda cans in neat rows, there's a good chance you might knock them down when reaching around for other items. Most TikTok users dedicate a corner of the top shelf for their refreshing beverages, using a dispenser or a crate. A dispenser works a lot like a vending machine, its mechanism pushing the rest of the drinks to the front as soon as one is taken out. The Display Technologies dispenser has 10 detachable rows that can be taken apart and customised to fit your fridge. Another budget-friendly option includes a clear can holder that can be stocked horizontally, with up to nine cans.

6. Replace milk and juice cartons with clear pitchers

milk pitcher
This organisation hack takes out the jarring colours of your packaging and replaces them with clear flasks. Image Credit: Unsplash/Charlotte May

Glass Monger Clear Glass Milk Bottles Set, 2 Pieces

Stock Your Home Glass Milk Bottles (4 Pack), 8 White Caps

Prodyne Acrylic Juice Jar, Black

To reduce "eye clutter", invest in glass pitchers for your juices and milk. Decanting is a lot of work and does need labelling where necessary, but this is just an extra step you could take to elevate your refrigerator. Plus, it makes it easier for you to tell what drinks you're running low on. Nassar says that if you go through your milk fast, then frequent refills could be a hassle in this case. However, these pitchers do come in handy for storing homemade lemonade, nut milk, iced tea and more. Experiment with elegant containers or go for uniform pitchers for all - we've picked them out for you.

7. Treat your condiments and miscellaneous sauces to a turntable

turntable trays stock
Add a large turntable to house your condiments, if they have nowhere else to go. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Puricon Lazy Susan Turntable Organiser, 2 Pack

mDesign Fluted Lazy Susan Turntable, 11.5" Round, 2 Pack

iDesign Linus Turntable Kitchen, 14-Inch

Most of our sauce bottles go into the door compartment but these fill up fast with pitchers and cartons. Nassar suggests stationing a Lazy Susan on one of the fridge main shelves, instead. "When you have a big family, you end up collecting a wide range of cooking sauces, spreads and condiments. Just get a turntable to store these if there's limited space in the door," she said. The 360-degree rotation gives you easy access to everything on the tray. Pick the size that's right for your fridge.

8. Invest in a label maker

fridge storage
Labels help the entire family keep the fridge organised. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Cricut Joy

Pros

  • Compact - only weighs 1.75kgs
  • Personalise your own labels for condiments and bins
  • Connects to phone via Bluetooth
  • App has some free templates

Cons

  • Cutting material is sold separately

Nassar finds labelling her bins and drawers a surefire way of letting her family know which food item goes into what container. This keeps the organisation system intact, especially when kids are around. "Someone would just take the ketchup bottle or yoghurt and toss it in without knowing where to put it back. It's easier with labelled bins," she added. Her choice of label maker is the Cricut Joy machine which cuts over 50 paper materials into any shape or form. Nassar says the mobile app has preloaded options, and it writes out whatever you want. You will need to buy the writing material separately, which is a peel-and-stick smart label by Cricut.

Bonus: Buy with 0% installments and pay Dh56.58 for 12 months with select banks.

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