8 Fridge Organisation Hacks For Your Endless Supply Of Hotpot Ingredients This CNY

Fridge organisation tips

It’s that time of the year again. Finding space within your fridge at home becomes a challenging game of Tetris because it’s jam-packed with food items for your annual Chinese New Year steamboat.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. With the CNY festivities fast approaching, these organisational fridge tricks you never knew about will help you have stress-free open house visits. Even beyond the new year, applying these tips could be the welcome change your home so desperately needs.

Check out more food organisation tips here:

1. Use egg cartons to store sauce bottles

No more shaking, squeezing or struggling to get your favourite sauce out of their bottle.

A hotpot session at home calls for your own makeshift sauce station. Have all your dipping condiments neatly arranged by having them placed upside down using an egg carton by the door shelf.

Not only does this give you complete knowledge of where they are like a true #SauceBoss, but it will also save you that all-too-familiar struggle of shaking the bottles to squeeze them out.

2. Use a bookend to stack drinks

One thing a good host shouldn’t miss out for their CNY gathering: keeping drinks chilled beforehand.

Do away with bulky styrofoam boxes by using a bookend to stack beverages in your fridge. Be it an ice cold can of beer or a refreshing bottle of water, having them lined up neatly makes them even more accessible, and is sure to impress any guest that’s over your house.

3. Sort out ingredients using magazine holders

Another refrigerator hack you can find from your personal library? Magazine holders.

Instead of using them vertically, insert them in your fridge or freezer sideways to transform them into your very own shelf. Have all that shabu shabu meat portioned out and readily available at a glance.

4. Categorise ingredients accordingly in baskets

We’re all guilty of leaving items around in the fridge at random. Instead of having no clue where you last placed specific ingredients in the fridge, using labelled containers or baskets to help categorise them in order is a Marie Kondo-approved method towards having a decluttered refrigerator.

5. Use a Lazy Susan to access hard-to-reach items

If having easy access to everything in your fridge is your priority, consider using a mini Lazy Susan to display small items like condiments and garnishes.

The ease of spinning it around to get what you want is a cheap thrill that removes the hassle of manoeuvring your hand inside for hard-to-reach items forgotten at the back, while ensuring that you don’t let anything in your fridge go to waste.

6. Store readily-prepared vegetables in mason jars

Image credit: Pinterest

Don’t forget your your greens! Portion out veggies for your guests by preparing them in mason jars, letting them enjoy it on the side if they prefer. Storing salads in such a way also makes them last longer for about 1 to 2 weeks.

7. Repurpose beer cartons for condiments

Beer bottles usually come in a pack of 4 or 6, and their cardboard carriers should not be let go to waste. Give them a new lease of life by keeping your condiment bottles like mustard and ketchup in the slots.

Carriers with handles also mean that you can just bring the whole pack out to the dining table instead of individual bottles.

8. Label a designated space for expiring items

An underrated trick to a cleaner and a more spacious fridge is by simply labelling a compartment solely for expiring products. It is so often that we overlook expiration dates, which lead to both food and money wasted.

If you have leftover ingredients expiring soon, do yourself a favour by chucking them into a designated side shelf in your fridge so the rest of the household know to prioritise them. Chinese New Year is all about spring cleaning, and your fridge shouldn’t be an exception!

Have a mess-free kitchen for Chinese New Year

Every holiday season doesn’t have to end up in a frantic catastrophe in your kitchen. With the right attitude and these fridge hacks, you’ll be well on your way to a completely stress-free situation at home from now on.

Read these articles for more help on choosing a fridge:

Photography by Thaddeus Lim.
Originally published on 4th February 2019. Last updated by Josiah Neo on 8th February 2021.

Bryan Christopher Yeong

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