Chest freezers have become integral parts of our kitchens and essentially; our lives. However, most of us are guilty of failing to organize these pieces of kitchenware in such a way that we get the best out of them.
Chest freezer design does not make it any easier to organize the contents you wish to preserve in there. It is just like organizing a deep box. Quite difficult. Right? Though a hard undertaking, you should always strive to get the best out of your chest freezer and this starts with proper organization.
Some chest freezer manufacturers are kind enough to provide tools that help in organizational such as wire baskets. However, in most cases this is just a drop in the vast ocean that is chest freezer organization.
Reading that introductory paragraph, you might wonder why organization of your chest freezer is important and necessary if it is as hard as I am making it sound. It is absolutely necessary and not as hard as it might seem at first. Organization helps save your time as you spend less of it looking around.
You are likely to find what you want faster. In some cases, you might miss some packages in your chest freezer such that they go bad right before your eyes. Such cases can be avoided with proper organization. With that, here are the five best tips that make arranging your chest freezer a stress-free experience:
1. Group your food
Similar types of food share characteristics when it comes to how they behave when stored in a chest freezer. Grouping your food into similar characteristics will help you predict the time frames that are held before the said food can go bad. It also helps if you do not have to go looking for fruit in the meat section of your chest freezer. This is one simple tip that only requires creation of a plan that works best for you.
2. Invest in chest freezer accessories
Organizational accessories for your chest freezer will literally take your organization goals to the next level. Storage bins, chest freezer dividers and wire baskets are some of the simplest accessories you can pick up easily and that are functional. They help you create compartments in a bare box.
It becomes even simpler to organize smaller boxes first before moving on to the bigger box which is the chest freezer. You can also choose to use specific types of food for specific types of food for even better results. Baskets that are provided by manufactures are often hung from the chest freezer top.
These baskets can be used to organize the small tiny bits of food materials that you use often. This will save you from a deep dive every time you want to cook a meal.
This tip heavily relies on the above tip. Label your storage boxes very clearly. The labels are best placed on the lids of these boxes for ease of identification.
As opposed to side labeling for storage boxes in refrigerators, due to the boxy design of a chest freezer, lid labeling is favored. Alternatively, you can go the route of color coding your storage boxes. The choice of colors is usually up to you but always go for what works for you.
There is no point in choosing colors that will confuse you yet you aim at less confusion. It is also important to invest in quality labels. You can get a fairly inexpensive labeling machine. This is because a chest freezer is always moist and a simple marker pen label will not always cut it. You can also include dates on these labels to help you identify expiry dates via a simple glance.
4. Creating an inventory
It is always important to know what you have or do not have in your chest freezer. Picture this; its the weekend, you are dying to go home and make some slow cooked chicken stew.
You make a stopover at the grocery store and purchase the required spices as well as condiments. At this point your mouth is watering as you picture the meal you want to get home for. You have even invited some friends over for chicken and wine.
So you get home and dice those onions but shock on you when you open your chest freezer. You cooked the very chicken you were planning three nights ago when your parents dropped by. Now your friends are disappointed and so are you.
More so, you are disappointed in yourself. How did you not remember that you needed to top up on your chicken? You had made a mental note but you forgot as work had you all stressed up. But there is a note that is hard to forget. A note that is put down on paper.
An inventory helps you know what the contents of your chest freezer and with the other organizational tips above, you know where these food items are inside the chest freezer. This inventory should be placed near the chest freezer. It is also important to note that an inventory will also help you as you make your purchase decisions.
This is a very simple organization trick that involves arranging your food items in layers. Most times, this layer arrangement factors in factors such as expiry dates. The food items that are closest to expiry should be stored on the top layers so that they are easy to get to and use.
After shopping, a rotational schedule should be at hand to help you maintain the authenticity of the layer organization method. Alternatively you can create layers based on the types of food. This method is based on layers but what to be included in these layers is up to you.
The above methods are just a guide that will go a long way in helping you organize your chest freezer. There are many methods out there that also aim at helping you achieve the same organization. Therefore adopt those that work for you.
You can also DIY your way into chest freezer organization. It is not easy to get chest freezer organization wrong. The only way you can get it wrong is by making no effort at all.