Cleaning the refrigerator is a pain in the ass. Period. It is. It takes time. I move fast and I can’t get it done right in under 45 minutes.
Alas, it must be done because there are few things grosser than a dirty, cluttered fridge. I try to do it monthly, but, honestly, it probably gets done once a quarter. Having seen some other refrigerators, though, I think I’m doing ok.
So, this is your assignment: Let’s get that bugger clean. We’ll feel SO shiny and superior when we do. Let’s get started.
- Choose a date and time to do this task and put it on your calendar. I do mine on Saturday mornings and reward myself with lunch at my favorite Greek place. (Are you seeing a pattern to my work/reward strategy? Without the gyro, I’d never get a thing done.)
- On the appointed day, set your clock for one hour and get to work with no distractions.
- Remove all items from the door’s shelves. Throw away anything that’s old and that you’re not going to use. Wipe down the bottoms of things you plan to keep with a damp paper towel.
- Take out the shelves and wash them in soapy warm water. Dry and replace. Put the stuff back in.
- Starting with the top shelf of the main compartment, remove all items. Discard anything old or that you’re not so fond of anymore. Wipe down the keepers.
- If you can remove the shelves, do so. Muck collects everywhere in the fridge. Wash in soapy warm water. If you can’t remove the shelves, wipe them down well with damp cloth. Replace the keeper items.
- Take out all drawers. Throw away anything old. Be brutal. If you wrinkle your nose at anything, don’t keep it, you’re not going to eat it. Wash the drawers in soapy warm water.
- Wipe down the area under the drawers. You know, the place the random broccoli bit gets to and you can see it all week but can’t reach it and it irritates you? Get that sucker now.
- Wipe down the inside walls of the fridge.
- Finally, use some disinfectant to give the outside of the fridge a good wiping down, including both sides of the handle. You’d be amazed how dirty the handles of your fridge and freezer get with use. If you have a stainless steel refrigerator, finish by buffing it with a small amount of baby oil. Removes the fingerprints, I’ve heard. (My fridge is just boring black, so I’ll live vicariously through your stainless steel baby oil buffing, for now.)
Stand back, gaze admiringly at the freshly clean appliance that holds and protects most of your food. Speak to it in a low and loving tone. Tell it you love it and appreciate all it does for you.
Good job, Penelope. Go eat a gyro. You deserve it.