We could all use a few hacks in the kitchen. Whether you’re an amateur cook, a professional chef, or this is your first time in the kitchen – there are always new hacks and tricks to learn, and they’ll make your life in the kitchen a lot easier. Anything to make that nightly meal just a bit easier is worth it! Here are ten kitchen hacks that are sure to alleviate some of that stress.
#1: Keep it within reach. Invest in a set of ramekins to have your spices, herbs, onion, and garlic on hand close by. Cooking happens quickly, and using ramekins takes up very little counter space. They also keep you from forgetting a key ingredient.
#2: Plan your meal the day before. With a bit of pre-planning, you can avoid trying to thaw frozen meat quickly and make sure you have everything you need to avoid a trip to the grocery store at the last minute.
#3: Clean as you go. Kitchens get messy quickly and tidying up as you go really helps. If you’re using veggies, throw scraps into the bag they came in while you chop!
#4: Zest your garlic instead of using pre-minced or having to mince it yourself. Using a zester or small grater is a lot quicker than chopping garlic up into tiny pieces. Fresh garlic also tastes much better than that little jar in your fridge.
#5: Keep your most-used spices out, and put the rest away. Having easy access to what you use most often keeps you from rummaging around your spice cabinet looking for a specific one. It also takes just a glance to see what you’re running low on and need to get from the grocery store.
#6: Keep those knives sharp! A dull blade can obliterate a lump of meat or veggie before you even use it and make cutting and chopping a chore. By keeping your knives sharp, the whole process will go much quicker.
#7: Use jasmine rice. Unlike its cousins, it’s ready in 12 minutes instead of 20. That’s a huge time saver! It’s also super yummy, and your family won’t even notice the difference if you don’t point it out. It even uses less water than the average 1:2 ratio; it uses a 1:1.5!
#8: Put your veggies in the door and your condiments in the drawer. Condiments last forever when refrigerated, but those veggies can spoil quickly. By seeing them every time you open the fridge instead of hiding them away, you’ll know you need to use them soon or throw them out!
#9: Keep a weekly theme. Buying groceries is expensive, and cooking means you need lots of ingredients. By theming your week, you can reduce the need for different elements and practice different ways of cooking the same items. For instance, choose cauliflower as your theme and find five different ways to cook it. Variety is great, but lots of foods are very versatile, and you don’t always use the entirety of what you bought for one meal. Try broccoli the week after!
#10: Devote a day to leftovers. You’ve spent money and time cooking up food, and you probably have Tupperware in your fridge waiting for someone to eat it. By having a leftover night, it gets used up, you get the evening off, and your fridge gets emptied!
We hope these kitchen hacks are helpful for you! Remember, cooking is a learning process, and you’re not going to land every meal perfectly. It’s okay; you can try again next time!