How to Clean and Organize Your Refrigerator

A fresh start: cleaning and organizing your refrigerator.

The refrigerator is the heart of any kitchen, responsible for preserving our food and keeping it fresh. However, it can quickly become a chaotic mess if not properly maintained. Regular cleaning and organization not only ensure that your food stays safe to eat but also make cooking and meal planning a breeze. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through a step-by-step process to clean and organize your refrigerator, helping you achieve a clutter-free and efficient kitchen space.

Step 1: Prepare for the Task

Before diving into the cleaning process, set aside some time when you won’t be interrupted. This task may take a while, depending on the state of your refrigerator and the amount of clutter to sort through.

Gather the necessary supplies, including:

  • Gloves (if you prefer)
  • Non-toxic cleaning solution (a mixture of water and mild dish soap and white vinegar works well)
  • Microfiber cloths or sponge
  • Baking soda (for eliminating odors)
  • Storage bins or organizers (optional, for enhancing organization)

Step 2: Empty the Refrigerator

Start by removing all the items from your refrigerator. Place them on the kitchen counter or a nearby table. Discard any expired or spoiled food, and make a note of items that are close to their expiration date so you can prioritize using them soon.

Step 3: Wipe Down the Interior

Take out the shelves, drawers, and other removable parts and wash them with warm, soapy water. Wipe down the interior of the refrigerator with your chosen cleaning solution, paying special attention to any spills or stains. Baking soda mixed with water can help tackle stubborn odors and leave your fridge smelling fresh.

I like to use these clear glass spray bottles and use this natural cleaning solution:

Dawn soap and vinegar can be combined to create an effective and natural cleaner for various household tasks. The mixture is particularly useful for cutting through grease and grime. Here’s a simple recipe and some common uses:


  • Dawn dish soap (or any other mild liquid dish soap)
  • White vinegar
  • Water

In the spray bottle, mix equal parts of Dawn dish soap and white vinegar and then add water. The water helps dilute the solution and prevents it from being too harsh on certain surfaces.

Gently shake the spray bottle to mix the ingredients thoroughly.

Step 4: Organize with Zones

An organized fridge helps you quickly locate what you need and prevents food from getting lost at the back. Create different zones for specific food categories, such as fruits, vegetables, dairy, condiments, and leftovers. Place the most frequently used items at eye level for easy access.

Step 5: Utilize Clear Containers

Transfer loose items like berries, deli meats, or cheeses into clear, airtight containers. This not only keeps your fridge looking neat but also helps preserve the freshness of the food. Label the containers with their contents and expiration dates for added convenience.

Step 6: Maximize Space with Organizers

Consider investing in refrigerator organizers, such as lazy Susans, egg holders, and can dispensers.

These nifty gadgets optimize space and prevent items from getting lost or buried in the back. // Hoojo refrigerator organizer bins // 2 pack Egg holders for fridge // 18-piece glass food storage containers

Step 7: Clean the Exterior

Don’t forget to clean the exterior of your refrigerator, including the handle and doors. Use an appropriate cleaner to remove fingerprints and smudges, giving your fridge a polished look.

This is my all-time favorite stainless-steel cleaner. It is plant based with lavender oil. It doesn’t require very much buffing. It even helps with fingerprints! // Therapy Stainless Steel Cleaner for Appliances

Step 8: Set a Regular Cleaning Schedule

Maintaining a clean and organized refrigerator requires ongoing effort. Set a reminder on your calendar to clean the fridge at least once a month, and make it a habit to toss expired items weekly during meal planning.

A clean and organized refrigerator not only enhances the efficiency of your kitchen but also contributes to food safety and reduces waste. By following these steps and implementing good habits, you’ll be well on your way to maintaining a fresh and organized fridge. Enjoy the benefits of a clutter-free kitchen and keep your food in tip-top shape, ready to create delicious meals whenever inspiration strikes. Happy cleaning!

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