Fall Back in Love With Cooking With These Kitchen Hacks
- Fundamentals of Meal Prep
- Time-Saving Kitchen Hacks
- Creative Ways To Reuse Ingredients
- Ways To Streamline Cleanup
Cooking can be a very rewarding experience; you get to learn new recipes, create delicious meals, and make your family and friends happy with great food. But for a lot of people, it’s also a source of stress and frustration. We understand — that’s why we’re here to help you fall back in love with cooking with these tried-and-true kitchen hacks.
In this post, we’ll share the top cooking tips and tricks to make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. We’ll also provide you with helpful suggestions on how to make the most of your time, how to plan meals ahead of time, and how to make seemingly difficult recipes much easier. So, if you’ve been feeling frustrated in the kitchen, read on and get ready to give cooking another chance!
Fundamentals of Meal Prep
Meal prep not only saves time and energy during the week, but it also ensures that you have healthy food readily available when hunger strikes. Follow these basic steps to stay on track with your meal prep:
Plan Your Meals
It’s a good idea to take some time each week to plan out your meals. Make a grocery list accordingly and add any items that you may need for the week’s recipes. This will help save time and money at the store since you won’t have to spend extra time looking for random ingredients or get sidetracked by those tempting impulse buys!
Portion Out Snacks
Once you are home from the store, take some time to prep and portion out any snacks into individual containers. This will keep your refrigerator and pantry organized and make snack time a breeze!
Do Prep Work in Advance
Do as much prep work as possible in advance. For example, washing and chopping veggies ahead of time or marinating meat overnight. Investing in tools like an electric food chopper will also help speed up the process of slicing, chopping, and dicing ingredients.
Cook in Batches
Save more time by cooking your meals in large batches. This will ensure that you have enough food for the entire week, limiting how often you have to cook throughout the week. You can store your prepped meals in the fridge in airtight containers for several days and freeze extras to last even longer.
Time-Saving Kitchen Hacks
When it comes to preparing a delicious meal, no one wants to be stuck in the kitchen all night long! Here are a few handy hacks that you can use to save time while cooking:
Crack Eggs With One Hand
This will come in handy when cooking multiple eggs at once! Place your egg on a flat surface and use your dominant hand to press down onto the eggshell with your index finger. The shell will easily crack open, leaving all of the yolks inside.
Reheat Leftovers Faster
Reduce microwave cooking time by placing a wet paper towel or damp dishcloth over dishes with leftovers before heating them up. The moisture trapped by the towel or cloth helps disperse heat evenly throughout whatever dish is being reheated, allowing it to heat up faster and more thoroughly than without it!
Soften Butter Quickly
You can soften butter without waiting hours or risking it melting by using this simple hack. Cut the butter into cubes and place them on a plate so they are spaced out evenly. Microwave them at medium power for 15-second intervals until they reach desired consistency.
Peel Garlic Efficiently
If you’re ever short on time but need garlic for a recipe, place unpeeled cloves into an airtight container and shake vigorously for about 30 seconds or until cloves are peeled — no knife needed!
Creative Ways To Reuse Ingredients
Leftover ingredients don’t have to go to waste! Here are some creative ways to use those extra bits from last night’s dinner:
Whip up Delicious Sauces
If you find yourself with some extra herbs or vegetables on hand, whip up a tasty sauce made from whatever is leftover! Simply add your ingredients into a blender with some olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper (or whatever spices you prefer!), then blend until the desired consistency is reached — voila!
Make Flavorful Syrups
Got fruit that’s ripe but not exactly at its peak for eating? Turn it into an ingredient-saving syrup! Boil down any combination of fruit with white sugar or honey until thickened, then let cool. Use it as a condiment or topping on ice cream or pancakes!
Soup It Up
If there’s anything better than soup during cold weather seasons, it’s a delicious soup made with whatever ingredients you have handy! Start by sautéing some aromatics like onions and garlic, then add in any proteins like shredded chicken as well as chopped veggies along with some broth and simmer until everything is cooked through. Serve hot, and enjoy.
Ways To Streamline Cleanup
The last thing anyone wants after enjoying a nice meal is to deal with a lengthy clean-up process! Here are a few simple tips that will make cleaning up easier and quicker:
Line Baking Sheets With Parchment Paper Before Baking
Lining your baking sheets with parchment paper prevents food from sticking, which eliminates labor-intensive scrubbing when washing baking sheets after cooking. Plus, there’s no risk of plastic toxins leaching into food either like with non-stick cookware or foil liners which makes this a healthy, eco-friendly option too!
Soak Stubborn Messes
Dealing with grease splatters that won’t budge? Put any greasy dishes or cookware in the sink with some hot water and dish soap, then let it soak for about 10 minutes before rinsing it clean. It’ll save hours of elbow grease scrubbing later on after everything has fully cooked onto pans and dishes!
Use Rags Instead of Sponges or Paper Towels
Invest in some reusable rags to save money and clean in a more sustainable way. They won’t wear out as quickly as sponges do and don’t need to be disposed of like paper towels which means fewer trips to the grocery store for more cleaning tools every other week! Rags also absorb more water compared to sponges so they will help speed up the drying process, too.
Cooking is a wonderful way to express your creativity, unwind after a long day, and nourish your soul. With the right tools and techniques, you can easily make it a pleasurable experience. These kitchen hacks can help you organize and plan your meals, save time in the kitchen, and even reuse leftover ingredients.
Most importantly, these tips and tricks can help you fall back in love with cooking. So, if you’ve been feeling frustrated in the kitchen, give it another chance with these strategies to make cooking a joyful experience again.