The changing of seasons calls for different types of meals – at least at my house. During the summer we do a lot of grilling, but when the temperatures drop, we love having soups, chilis, and warm, hearty meals!
To make my life easier (and fall more enjoyable), I lean on four annual rhythms that reset my kitchen. Let’s do it!
1. Crockpot Quick Fix
Is your crockpot tucked away in a hard-to-reach place? In the fall, move it onto the counter for easy every day access.
This small adjustment in the function of my kitchen makes a HUGE difference in my daily routine. Crockpot meal options are limitless and practically cook themselves! What’s better than that?!!! We’re always cooking my favorite fall chili. (Join the UOL Community to get your recipe here!)
If the crockpot isn’t your jam, is there a convenience item you can make more accessible this fall? Your instant pot, tea kettle, etc?
2. Tupperware Refreshment
I can’t say I look forward to going through my Tupperware each fall. But the rewards!!
We tend to have more leftovers and busier schedules this time of year, so having an army of USABLE Tupperware at my fingertips makes meal prep and food storage work for me (rather than the other way around).
First, make sure every container has a lid. Throw out cracked or broken containers. Throw out those lids without matching containers.
Look at your remaining pile. Do you use each piece? Are there containers who’ve never seen the light of day? Do any of your regular food needs actually fit or fill that container? No? It’s just taking up space in your home. Say goodbye.
Next, pay attention next time you’re prepping meals or wrapping up dinner. Are you constantly washing and re-washing a particular size, shape or material of container? Invest in those pieces of Tupperware that TRULY meet your needs.
3. Freezer Clean Out (you can do it!)
Get in that freezer and clean it out! Chances are you’ll find things that you can use in an upcoming meal right next to things that should have been thrown out long ago. (Here’s looking at you, pot roast from 2003.)
Make it your goal to use up the good stuff this fall.
Let’s pause here. Let’s say every freezer item left is teeeeeechnically edible. But are there any you’ve looked over for months or years? If you’re not still not reaching for that frozen spinach, consider texting a friend to take good food off your hands.
Why make room in the freezer at all? Two things: meal prep and leftovers. As life picks up pace this fall, a roomy freezer allows you to store meal prepped foods for easy cooking later AND offers leftover storage for when you want something warm but you just. can’t. cook. anymore.
Check out our favorite freezer organizer here. Perfect for bags of veggies + fruit.
4. Snack Stock-Up
Keeping simple, simple, simple snacks on hand is a mental and emotional game-changer for my family. When planning back-to-school snacks, my musts are:
- easy to grab
- easy to store
Bananas, cuties, grapes, applesauce pouches, and bars are great (and you can find great options ALL at Walmart!).
Store snacks on lower shelves or in kitchen drawers for kiddos. Clear, appropriately-sized bins help you see when you’re running low. No snack emergencies! For kids, avoid boxes with complicated lids or square bins with high walls. We love these wooden reach-in bins from the Container Store and these drawer dividers for customizable sections.
1-2-3-4 Kitchen Refreshers
Say it with me: crockpot, Tupperware, freezer, snacks.
What simple changes can you make to work with your kitchen this fall rather than against?
Throw on your favorite podcast, audio book, or TV show and knock it out. I can’t wait to see what rhythms you find in your own seasonal transition!