Organize Your Food Storage
Are you struggling to organize your food storage?
One of the many changes brought about by the pandemic is that a lot of us are going to stores less often. We are also buying more or buying in bulk when we do. It’s not just toilet paper! Instead of buying one package of cheese, we buy three. Instead of buying small jars of tomato sauce, we’re buying two large ones. We’re trying to make sure we have everything we need to make more food at home without having to go back to the store too quickly.
Bulk Food Storage Organization
If you buy in bulk, make sure the items you buy can either be frozen or can last long enough for you to eat them. For example, if you buy an extra bag of shredded cheese, that’s ok, because hard cheese and shredded cheese can most often be frozen. So can tortillas, bread, and of course, meats, poultry, and so many other foods. However, mayonnaise, eggs (whole eggs in the shell – raw or boiled), raw potatoes, and soft cheeses (like mozzarella or brie) will be destroyed in the freezer.
- If you buy bulk meats, like a family pack of boneless chicken breasts, break them into smaller packages. Wrap them in plastic wrap and foil before freezing. That way, you only have to un-thaw the portion you need for a meal.
- Before storing freezer bags, use a sharpie to write the date and contents on the bag.
- When all of your meat is wrapped in foil, it can be difficult to tell what’s what. Use masking tape and label packages with the type of meat.
Buying more food only works if it doesn’t go to waste because you have to throw it out because it went bad. To prevent this, follow these tips:
- Write the date you open a container (like yogurt, tomato sauce, or salsa) on the lid; you’ll know how long it’s been in there.
- Always rotate. For example, when you buy a new gallon of milk, put it behind the one that expires sooner so that you use them in order.
- Store things in clear jars and plastic storage bags labeled with the date opened or the throw out date; this way you can see what you have and how much you have left without having to open up every container and check it each time.
- Each week, go through and see what’s getting close to expiring and push that on the family for snacks and meals to prevent waste.
Organize Your Food Storage Pantry
While dry bulk goods will last longer, it’s still important to keep track of expiration dates. Rotate the supply so that you’re always using the food that is expiring the soonest first. It’s a really great time to do a pantry organizing project. Start by tossing out anything that is expired or has not been used in over a year. Organize the pantry so that you can see what you have.
Our new grocery habits may be here to stay for a while. It’s a good time to organize your food storage and develop habits that will keep you from wasting money on the bulk purchases you make.