And promote healthy eating.
With the cold weather it’s tempting to gorge on simple carbohydrates and fatty comfort foods. But we mustn’t forget to eat our daily fruits and veggies. This is the time of year when it’s especially important to keep the produce we want our families to eat in places where it will stay freshest and be most enticing. I spoke with two certified kitchen designers, Carole Hedstrom of Gilmans Kitchens + Baths and Jodi Tramontin of Dura Supreme Cabinetry, to get their suggestions about where to store your fresh foods.
Dear Lillie, original photo on Houzz
Don’t Overlook the Obvious
It is said that we eat first with our eyes. For that reason it makes sense to place shelf-stable produce in highly visible areas. “A decorative bowl or basket filled with fruits that are easy to grab and eat on the go is ideal for busy families,” Tramontin says. And a delicious-looking fruit or vegetable is a better advertisement for itself to a snack seeker than someone nagging him or her to eat it.
“Many fruits keep well at room temperature too, like apples, pears, bananas, oranges and other citrus,” Hedstrom says. Take advantage of this attribute and keep appropriate produce out in the open. Even the sweetest fruit won’t tempt anyone if no one knows where it is.
“Any countertop space will work,” Hedstrom says, “but the optimal place for such an arrangement might be on an island or command-center area where the family keeps its technology and calendars. If that’s not an option, go with the counter closest to the exit, the idea being that the fruit is in a spot where family members can’t miss it on their way out.”
Choose a basket or bowl that draws attention. The more appealing the display, including the receptacle holding the produce, the more apt it is to entice family members.
The Cross Interior Design, original photo on Houzz
A multitiered basket is great for separating different fruits and making a colorful arrangement.
Custom Closet & Garage, original photo on Houzz
Use the Pantry and Base Cabinets
“Both pantries and base cabinets are great locations for built-in produce storage,” Hedstrom says. But just as with counter displays, make sure the contents can be seen.
If you prefer to not show everything off so conspicuously, wicker basket drawers or wooden crates offer their own artistry while still keeping produce fresh.
Studio Carver Architects, Inc., original photo on Houzz
These colorful crates convey a real summertime produce stand. Who could say no to that feeling on a cold December afternoon?
Worried about having too much drawer space and not enough produce to fill it all? Use a divided drawer that keeps produce in front and other items in back.
Capozzi Design Group, original photo on Houzz
Handy Refrigerator Drawers
This sort of refrigeration system is intended to be an addendum to a regular refrigerator and is perfect for a large kitchen that needs to accommodate lots of hungry bodies.
Designate one or two drawers to cold-storage produce out of the immediate work zone. “That way,” says Tramontin, “people can grab what they want without interfering with dinner preparations. It’s also a great solution for the family’s sous-chef, giving that person easy access to refrigerated produce without getting in the head chef’s way.”
Old World Kitchens & Custom Cabinets, original photo on Houzz
Tramontin suggests adding fridge drawers directly below a countertop, ideally at the end of an island that opens out to a walkway or on the back side of an island in a spot that doesn’t compete for vital workspace. Add a single drawer and have a drawer for pots underneath, or stack two refrigerator doors together for more storage.
Content by Tiffany Carboni of Houzz.com. Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish. From decorating a room to building a custom home, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts, and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world.