20 Quick and Easy Cooking Hacks

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I'm not going to lie back in the day before I moved out on my own I was a horrible cook I even burned uncooked rice.  Seriously how does someone even do that?  Well I managed to.  Growing up I always watched my Mom, Grandma, Aunts and even a few men cook in the kitchen and picked up some valuable knowledge I would use later in life while I was out on my own.  I've learned everything from what substitutes to use in a recipe to how to have almost zero kitchen waste.  I figure I should share some of my knowledge especially with the holiday season coming up and everyone baking and cooking away in the kitchen!

20 quick and easy cooking hacks

20 Quick and Easy Cooking Hacks

  1. Don’t add too much baking powder: Your cake or quickbread will actually rise less; not more. And taste bitter.
  2. When making holiday meals, first clear your counters. Remove unnecessary items to give yourself maximum work space.
  3. If you plan to freeze a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables, invest in a vacuum sealer.
  4. An envelope cut diagonally, with the remaining point also cut off, makes a handy impromptu funnel for dry ingredients.
  5. Substitute coconut milk for condensed milk, if you’re making a vegan-friendly cake.

 

buttermilk

  1. Ready to peel the shells off eggs? Wet your fingers first—the peels won’t stick.
  2. Stock your kitchen with staples so you can quickly whip up anything: Flour, bouillon cubes, spices, sugar, salt and olive oil to start with.
  3. Use a griddle iron or heavy fry pan for pancakes. If you use cast iron, never wash it—wipe and season it with oil after every use.
  4. Worried that your eggs have been in the fridge too long? Put one in a bowl of water. If it sinks, it’s still fresh.
  5. When freezing anything, be sure to mark the date frozen on the bag.

baking-powder-substitute

  1. Can’t reach items on your top kitchen shelves? If stepping stools feel unstable, buy a long-arm grabber instead.
  2. Keep all your cake decorating utensils and ingredients in one small plastic tub with a lid. You’ll never lose a cake icing tip, that way.
  3. Did you know that frozen bananas make wonderful, creamy “ice cream”, when puréed in a food processor?
  4. Put a few grains of rice in your salt shaker, if you live in a humid climate. This will stop your salt from clumping.
  5. If you want to prevent cookies from hardening, store them in a sealed cookie jar with a slice of apple.

butter-soft

 

  1. Save time by pre-prepping ingredients for recipes you often make, and storing them , sealed, in your refrigerator or freezer.
  2. For gluten-free gravy, throw away the flour. Try cornstarch, arrowroot powder or tapioca starch instead.
  3. Blanch vegetables before freezing to stop sugars turning to starch—which does happen quickly after picking.
  4. Make sure you put all leftovers back in the fridge within two hours of serving. After that, food can begin to spoil.
  5. Make up salads in a jar for lunch: Heavy items like carrot slices at the bottom; grains, fruit and nuts in the middle, greens at the top.

 

Want a printable list?  These two lists have a permanent home in my cupboard, measurement conversions and baking substitutions, print them out you'll be happy you did!

What's your best cooking hack?

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