There’s apparently no such thing as being “too prepared” in all matters of meal prep, as evidenced by the thunderous applause one New York woman’s super-simple fridge organization hack has received on Facebook.
Sarah Hornung of Buffalo recently admitted that she is “shocked” at how viral her basic refrigerator organization tip has become during the back-to-school season. Two weeks ago, the school administrator and blogger behind The Eager Teacher shared a photo of her fridge door online, featuring clementines, string cheese, fruit snacks, carrots, grapes and more separated neatly in plastic quarts for easy, healthy snacking for her family of four.
"Sunday self-serve is ready for the week,” Hornung said of the snacks, which she said she always washes and preps before putting out.
“Self-serve for my kiddos means help yourself without asking and it’s always an okay snack (any time of day, bedtime snacks, etc.,)" the mom of two explained. “It also helps me when I’m packing lunches and snacks, or as a side dish when dinner doesn’t include something they will definitely eat or if we have a busy/late night.”
“There’s something about having things truly ready to grab that makes kids eat it. I could leave the baby carrots in a bag or leave the grapes on the stems but they wouldn’t eat it,” Hornung said.
In the days since, the teacher’s straightforward advice has since gone massively viral with over 84,000 likes, 32,000 comments and more than 115,000 shares on Facebook, not to mention over 2,900 “hearts” on Instagram. Many commenters agreed that they were inspired to copy the genius meal prep trick, or sounded off on how they similarly keep the kitchen organized for their own busy, healthy families.
“I love this! I have a big family, and we are always on the go! I might need to restock each night, but at least they’d know where to find healthy snacks all day!” one fan said.
“I do this and it works great...kids can pack their lunches,” another offered.
“As long as things are cleaned and cut up or prepared kids and even adults are more apt to [eat] more healthy snacks. Best thing to do!!” one chimed in.
Hornung said in an Oct. 1 interview that she can’t believe that her post has gone as far and wide as it has.
“I am shocked at how viral it became, but the more I read the comments from people, the more I understand it,” she told Today. “Everyone can relate to throwing out untouched produce at the end of the week and most parents find themselves in some kind of negotiation with kids over food on the regular."
“It's not an expensive or complicated hack. All you need is some old quart containers and your normal grocery haul,” the educator said.
Hornung also said she suspects her post “appealed to the masses” because it looked like a real-life family’s fridge, not a “picture-perfect” shot of expensive, fancy food like those sometimes seen on Instagram or Pinterest.
"I think it's something that regardless of how old your kids are, what they like to eat or how much money you make, it is a doable idea. I think this is why it went viral,” Hornung mused.