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Freezer Organization 101

I’ve been embarrassed about this for a long time. No, not my weight. Not my relatively recent inability to dance (I used to really shake my tailfeather. Now, I’m kind of like Elaine on Seinfeld, only less rhythmic). Not even the fact that I’ll often wear the same jeans for an entire week. My friends, I’m embarrassed about this:

You just gasped, didn’t you?

That is the inside of my freezer. If you’re old enough you’ll remember what happened every time Fred Flintstone opened his closet—well, that’s precisely what my freezer’s like, only when things fall out they tend to be frozen-solid blocks, and they invariably land on one’s feet. Who knew how important steel-toed boots could be in the kitchen?

If you’ve been reading for a while, you may recall I blogged about my freezer about a year ago. Sometimes I, uh, let things slide for a while, and I’ve found organizing the freezer to be a particularly daunting task. But this month I’m working on the Big Batch chapter of Parents Need to Eat Too, which means I’m cooking a big ol’ pot of something every day, sometimes twice a day, and roughly half of each recipe needs to fit into that overstuffed freezer. Good luck, right? I had no choice. Something had to be done.

Hello, Container Store.

What you see here is that same freezer, reorganized thanks to a Container Store sweater box and a handful of shoe boxes. The sweater box holds almost all our ready-to-go food, things that just need heating, both homemade and store-bought (you can see, it didn’t all fit—there are some Morningstar Farms and Trader Joe’s items nearby). The shoe box at top left holds uncooked meat, and the three lined up on the bottom hold bags of fruit and vegetables.

It ain’t perfect:

  • Because the boxes themselves take up space, I don’t seem to be able to cram quite as much in as I used to.
  • I like to freeze larger quantities of raw meat in zipper-lock bags, and those are too big for the shoe box.
  • There is no official home for popsicles (the horror!).
  • And when I lined up the open bags of frozen fruit on the bottom shelf, it made the freezer look unpleasantly jam-packed again:

But heck, at least nothing’s falling out on my foot now. Maybe someday I’ll get around to peeling all those labels off the boxes, huh?

Now it’s your turn: How do you organize your freezer?

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. DailyChef

    Well done! Cleaning out and reorganizing a freezer can be so intimidating. I have to say, I feel a lot more comfortable with your new freezer than your old one 😛

  2. Zarah Maria

    Ah, the old freezer! You did well, Deb! Ours is a wee bit bigger than yours, and so my tip number one is that I have a note stuck to the freezer door where I jot down everything I put in there (or cross off the list when I take it out) This way, I always know what's in the freezer, even though I may not be able to find it straight away (unless SOMEONE forgot to tick it off the list when they took it out, shame, shame on them! 😉 ) It has really helped me not having things "die" an untimely and cold dead, and it's also great for planning next weeks meals: "hey honey, what's in the freezer? We need to use the…" Dinner planned!

    And of course, I ALWAYS label stuff that I put in. Almost always, ahem. And I try to keep things seperated, we have three drawers, so one is for baby food, one for ready-to-use stuff (already marinated meat, caseroles, meatballs, peas, tomato sauce, frozen pizza dough etc.) and one is for "stuff that needs more work to become edible" ie. frozen tenderloin or chicken carcasses (for stock) That's the plan – a lot of the time it's more a matter of: there's room, I'll just stick this in here…

  3. Sis

    I did gasp. lol.

    But mine's not much better. Especially since my hubby cooks for himself (he's on a low-carb diet) and after I get everything organized and walk away smiling to myself, the next day I open the door and 7 packages of meat fall out on me. LOL

    Looks like you have a fun blog. I linked over here from 17andbaking and am putting you on the "check regularly" list. 🙂

  4. Mrs Allardyce

    Wow I am glad I found your blog 🙂 I am so ashamed of my freezer that I am setting myself a challenge. Not to buy a single item for the freezer until at least until one freezer draw is cleared. I have three draws crammed to the brim with god knows what! In an ideal world I would want one just for baby food, and homemade items, one for BBQ items and the other for frozen veg etc. WISH ME LUCK! xx

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