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Egg-cellent Tips for Cleaning the Refrigerator

After being cooped up inside all winter, we need a fresh start. Here are egg-cellent tips for freshening the refrigerator.

Spring is the time of year that many of us have been waiting for, especially after a freezing winter.

Windows are open, a fresh breeze is blowing in with rays of sunshine, and people are motivated to do an annual deep clean. After being cooped up inside all winter, we need a fresh start. Here are egg-cellent tips for freshening the refrigerator.

The first step is to remove all items to avoid having to reach around objects. This also decreases the possibility of contaminating any food with cleaning supplies.

Cleaning solvents can impact the taste of food and cause damage to the interior of the refrigerator. Instead of a commercial cleaner, try using hot, soapy water.

Next, take out all removable shelves, drawers and other parts. Soak the shelves and drawers in hot, soapy water while you clean the rest of the interior surfaces.

Wipe all inside surface areas thoroughly with hot, soapy water. Rinse the refrigerator with a damp cloth and then dry with a clean cloth. Use a cloth or sponge; these cleaning tools will not fall apart or leave particles behind.

Pay close attention to handles for sticky fingerprints. Also be sure to get in between the door and the door seal, which is a common area for a buildup of crumbs.

Clean the outside of the refrigerator with a stainless-steel surface spray. Make sure to wipe in the direction of the grain.

As you start to put items back into the refrigerator, make a plan for where you want everything. Organize the space into “like” categories; for examples, vegetables in a drawer, fruits in the other drawer, condiments in the door, etc.

If you have multiple bottles of a condiment, combine them. Pay close attention to the expiration date on the bottles. Producers use expiration dates to ensure that the consumer is using the product at its best quality.

Here is a review of what the expiration date means. This is important to prevent food waste.

Sell by: The product should not be sold after that date if the buyer is to have the product at its best quality.

Use by or Best by: This is an estimate as to how long a product will remain at its best quality.

Additional ways to avoid food waste:

  • Don’t buy more food than you and your family can use.
  • Make a shopping list before going to the store.
  • Avoid buying perishable items in bulk quantities.
  • Pay attention to how much food you throw away.
  • Freeze perishable food if you are unable to use it right away.
  • Maintain the cleanliness of your refrigerator by cleaning spills immediately and checking product expiration dates regularly.

By McKenzie Schaffer, Dietetic Intern, NDSU Extension

Filed under: fca newsletter

Sponsored in part by the Sanford Health Foundation.

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