Simplified Menu Planning: Day 4 – What’s in Your Fridge?

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31 Days to Simplify Your Menu Planning

31 Easy Steps to Real Food Meals Every Day

It’s easy to collect excess stuff and food in the kitchen and pantry, and it’s easy to lose focus and forget how to set up an efficient kitchen or a useful, healthy menu plan. So, during 31 Days to Simplified Menu Planning, we’ll take the necessary steps to simplify and streamline our food-related efforts.

Now that you have purged and organized the food in the cupboards and drawers, it’s time to evaluate the cold foods.

Step Four: Go Through Your Fridge

So, open up that fridge and explore the back, the drawers, and the dark corners. Don’t let it get you down; you’re dealing with it all now and it will feel great when it’s all out in the open, cleaned up, and dealt with.

Again, the best way to figure out what you have and what you should do is to

  • empty the fridge
  • wash it out
  • label (even just with a Sharpie!) the shelves and drawers
  • return things in a more orderly way

So, what is in your fridge now? Probably you found stuff to toss as you peered through the contents.

Sometimes it seems that because I feel bad throwing out perfectly good food when it is perfectly good, I put it in the fridge so that it has a chance to go bad. Then I don’t have to feel guilty tossing it out after it has a mold crust. When I stick it in the fridge I tell myself that I will use it, but the truth is that I’ll just conveniently forget about it until it’s useless.

Keeping less food, keeping the fridge organized, and keeping a plan really does help with this scenario. Let’s start now!

  • What do you need to use up soon? Make a plan to do so.
  • What belongs on your master pantry list? Add it to the inventory list.
  • What day of the week will you commit to confronting the contents of your fridge? The day before grocery shopping or on kitchen-cleaning day are good options.

Next up: The Freezer(s)!


Mystie Winckler began menu planning at 11 years old when her mom delegated one dinner a week to her. Marrying at 19, she’s had a lot of practice over the years. But between growing and homeschooling her family, meal planning often requires brain power that just isn’t there any more. Simplified Dinners is her solution to take the effort and thought out of healthy, frugal cooking. And now it is available for you, too! During the month of October only, while this series is running, use discount code 31days and receive $4 off!

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