Having the windows open and enjoying slightly cooler temperatures the past couple days has jump started my fall cleaning fever. Have you caught it yet?
I decided it’s high time I cleaned out my refrigerator again…
10 Steps to Cleaning the Refrigerator
1. Enlist help. Technically, you can skip this step, but if you can get your husband or kids to help the job will go much faster, which means your food will be out of the refrigerator less time.
2. Take everything out of the refrigerator. Everything. All the food, the shelves, the drawers and whatever else you can remove. While you are doing this, throw out any rotten or forgotten food.
3. Store “fragile” food in a cooler. I like to store the food that really needs to stay cold (i.e. meat, dairy products, etc.) in a cooler while I’m cleaning. I place all other food on the counters and the shelves and drawers in (or near) the sink to wash later.
4. Scrub the inside of the refrigerator. I prefer to use natural cleaners around my food, so I use baking soda and water to clean most things in the kitchen.
5. Wash the shelves and drawers. In the sink. You can use baking soda again or dish liquid soap. While you are doing this the refrigerator will have a little time to cool back down.
6. Evaluate and organize. Decide what items will go back in and where you want to store them. A few storing safety tips I got from this article:
- Keep similar foods together.
- Store raw meat on the lowest shelf, preferably in a bag or on a plate to avoid leaking.
- Place vegetables in the warmest part of the refrigerator (the bottom drawers).
- Keep eggs in their original container and store on the top shelve.
7. Check and set temperature. The best temperature range for safe food storage in a refrigerator is between 35F and 40F degrees.
8. Restock the refrigerator. Replace all shelves and drawers, then place food items in their proper place. You may want to consider adding a box of baking soda (opened) on a shelf or attach one of these cool things to the wall to absorb odors.
9. Clean the outside of the refrigerator. Wipe down the front and sides (if you can get to them!), disinfect the handles, and dust the top.
10. Pat yourself on the back. Congratulations on a job well done!
As simple as this chore is, it never gets done nearly as often as I would like. But, at least it gets done eventually, right?
When’s the last time you cleaned your refrigerator?
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