Before this pantry challenge kicked off, it was time to clean out and inventory my freezer. I’ve mentioned the inventory list I keep on the fridge before, and every few weeks, it needs to be rewritten due to the scribbles and cross-outs that result from using up items. It really helps me remember what I have and what I need to use up. Here is my five step process for getting ready for a pantry clean out:
1. Remove everything from the freezer, sorting the items as you remove them. I make piles of fruits and vegetables, sauces and stocks, meats, nuts, and herbs.
2. Give the freezer a good wipe down. There’s a lot of grossness that winds up in there.
3. Working from your sorted piles, write each item down on your inventory list. Indicate the quantity, both in weight and in number. I find it’s easiest to do this with tick marks so you can cross one tick off when you use one item. For example, my list tells me I have two 1/2# packages of ground chicken, I have one six pound pork shoulder.
4. After you’ve written down the item, return it to the freezer. Stack like items so that you don’t have to dig around. I know if I’m looking for my edamame, it’s going to be with the berries and spinach. No need to tear everything out of the freezer to find it, I just look in that general area.
5. Hang your inventory list on the outside of the fridge for easy reference.
6. Bonus: Enjoy a clean and organized freezer.