What’s in your fridge? When you commit to clean and healthy eating, taking care of your fridge is just as important as taking care of your body for your fitness journey. It houses your fuel. And… a lot of the time, many things that don’t need to be in there. It’s time to spring clean your way to a healthy fridge.
Step 1: Purge for a healthy fridge
I like to do this step before I go to the grocery store to make sure I don’t buy things I already have. (Does anyone else sometimes end up with three jars of mustard or multiple salad dressing bottles?) The best way to surround yourself with healthy food is to make room for it by purging your fridge and cupboards of unhealthy items.
Take an inventory of the things you already have on your grocery list. Make sure to check all the expiry dates and toss out anything that is past due. And remember to check the freezer! I know this isn’t a fun step but once it is done, it’s done. Make sure that anything you put in your fridge after that will serve your health goals.
If you struggle with where to start, try the condiment shelves first. I guarantee you will find a few expired dressings that need to be tossed. Take a glance at the labels and see if these foods are better left for cheat days or once in a blue moon. It is so easy to add tons of calories to an otherwise healthy meal by drenching it with condiments. I’m not saying that you should never use them, just to use them moderately.
Step 2: Deep clean for a sparkling fridge
Give your fridge a good clean. After your purge, remove everything that remains and set it aside so you can take out the shelves and drawers. Scrub those down with warm soapy water. This is also not so fun, but trust me it’s so refreshing to start this process with a proper clean fridge. And it will become a habit. You don’t have to do this every week but I like to do a deep clean every three months.
Step 3: Organize for ease of use
Having the fridge organized keeps me on track and helps me to remember what I have in stock. Glass storage containers are sometimes the easiest for leftovers so you can see what you have. Post-Its or labels are also helpful.
Step 4: Prep your produce
Once a week you’ll want to prep your produce. I usually chop up some veggies for a go-to big salad to keep my day-to-day prep time at a minimum. Chopping up a pepper and putting it in a container or grating a carrot or some cabbage to have on hand in the fridge will help you quickly add those veggies to your meals. Any fresh herbs you buy, cut the ends and place them in a mason jar with water in the fridge.
Something also key for me is make a mental or physical note on my calendar when I do this prep. This will help you remember to use your produce before things start to go bad. Most prepped raw veggies will last 3-5 days.
Time to clean the fridge!