Make a weekly meal plan. Keep a running list of meals that your household enjoys.
Check your fridge, freezer, and pantry for any ingredients you already have before you go shopping.
Use a shopping list phone app or use this smart shopping list of what you need for your meal plan. Include quantities so you buy only what you need. Avoid large containers of produce unless you know you have plans to eat it all.
Wash, chop, peel, cook, or portion ingredients for your weekly meals and snacks after you get home from the store or on the weekend. Store prepped food in clear containers and place them near the front of your fridge. Label the container with the prep date using masking tape.
Prepare and cook perishable items, then freeze them for use throughout the month. For example, bake and freeze chicken breasts or fry and freeze taco meat.
Befriend your freezer and visit it often. Freeze food such as bread, sliced fruit, or meat that you know you won’t be able to eat in time.
Write the name of the item and the freeze date on the bag or container.
Keep of list of what is in your freezer on the outside of the fridge. Include the date you froze each item. Cross out items as you use them.
Print this handy fruit and vegetable storage guide (pdf) to learn where to store the fruits and vegetables you buy to keep them fresher longer.
Use the Still Tasty Shelf Life Guide (external link) to learn the best way to store your favorite foods.
As some fruits ripen, they give off a gas that causes other produce to ripen quickly and go bad. Store fruits like ripe bananas, avocados, apples, and tomatos away from other produce. Store veggies and fruit in separate fridge drawers.
Designate an “eat soon” area in your fridge by moving food that's likely to spoil soon to the front of a shelf. Print and attach this label to the shelf, on a shoebox or other container to corral food that needs to be eaten soon.