Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Homemaking Tip: Organizing A Deep Freeze

Chest-type deep freezers are arguably more efficient than uprights, but a lot of people avoid them because they don't like having to dig for things that make their way to the bottom.

I keep ours organized by using plastic bins.  I buy these at Dollar General or Big Lots for $2 to $4 each.  I think they are the "sweater box" size.  I don't use lids on all of them, but I do keep the lids around in case I need them.

Ground venison on the left, split chicken breasts on the right, more totes below.

Each container has one kind of food in it.  One for beef; one for pork; one for processed meats like bacon, sausage and hot dogs; one or two for chicken; several for venison.  Right now, most of our veggies are in the freezer of our spare fridge, but if they are in the deep freeze, they get their own container, too.  Any overflow goes into the side baskets.

Baskets hold extra meats on left, shrimp and bags of  fresh-squeezed lemon juice on right.  MIL brought lots of lemons with her when she moved back from AZ last summer.

Organized this way, I just lift out the containers to get to what I need, which somehow is invariably at the bottom.  I don't have to dig, I just have to move a couple of totes out of the way.

Totes in the fridge-top freezer act as pull-out drawers.

I use similar totes in the across-the-top freezer on our main fridge in the kitchen.  These totes hold all those already-opened, partially-used bags of veggies, fries, etc.

Messy upright freezer.  Looks like I busted myself with the chocolate-flavored Cool Whip. It was for a specific Christmas recipe that I ended up not making. :(

Now, I wish I could figure out a better way to organize the freezer side of our side-by-side spare fridge in the garage.  This upright freezer layout is new to me and I just haven't got the hang of it yet.  I just throw things into the pull out baskets, but things just don't seem to stay very well organized in here.


Melynda said...

My little chest freezer is always a mess! I/we cut bins out of those plastic buckets from Costco that held laundry soap and cat litter. But still when grocery day comes around the new stuff gets dumped into the freezer. Sometimes my "helper" doesn't help that much, I am sure we think differently. I think put it away correctly the first time, and the helper prefers to deal with everything later.

Mark said...

I'm with Melynda on this one. Ours is a mess too. But mind you, it's not from me. I really try to organize it but Fred keeps dumping more stuff into it. Thanks for the tips! m.

McVal said...

gREAT ideas! My deep freeze is significantly smaller than yours and I think an ice cream cake is in the sideways right now... SOMEDAY I'll organize things and I will use THESE ideas!