From TikTok cooking hacks to ChatGPT-made recipes, it’s an awesome time for people who like to experiment with their cooking. Some surprisingly work, while others are just plain lies that would create a mess in your kitchen.
To help you with your cooking responsibilities and goals, here are 31 unconventional hacks to level up your kitchen skills.
1. Have an AeroGarden at Home
An AeroGarden is a useful component in the kitchen, especially if you’re into using herbs. You can conveniently use fresh herbs like basil and dill on your favorite meals. Elevate your pizzas and salads using only the freshest ingredients.
Do you want to feel like a Michelin-star chef? Get an AeroGarden.
2. Maximize the Use of a Waffle Maker
A waffle maker is an incredible investment, and you don’t have to limit its use to waffles. Get your potatoes and create your own hash browns with lots of cheese. The key is to think of meals you can flatten using the kitchen device. Wear your thinking cap, dig deep into your creativity, and make unique meals to maximize the use of your waffle maker.
3. Substitute Coffee for Water in Cakes and Brownies
Everything is better with coffee, but that’s if you can’t get through a day without a cup. Instead of using water in baking cakes and brownies, use your favorite coffee instead. They will have a richer and more delicious flavor. Make sure to allow your brewed coffee to cool down before adding it to the mix.
4. A Little Extra Salt in Desserts
However weird it sounds, salt works wonderfully in desserts and can bring out the addicting sweetness in them. You can add them to brownies, cakes, cookies, and pies.
Sprinkle just a little bit before baking for optimal deliciousness. Don’t go overboard with the salt, though; then it wouldn’t be a dessert anymore.
5. Add Espresso Powder to Any Dessert
Do you have leftover espresso powder that’s not enough for a cup of coffee anymore? Add half a teaspoon of espresso powder to any chocolate dessert you’re baking.
Espresso powder is not just limited to a cup of coffee. It elevates the flavor and adds more sinfulness to your dessert.
6. Tricks to Serving Meals on Warm Plate
Nothing beats the freshness of a warm plate of meal. Have a better dining experience by warming your plates before serving the meals.
You can pour hot water on the plates or run it in the microwave with a cup of water on the plates. But never run it empty! It can damage your microwave if you do.
7. Putting Butter in Tomato Sauce
The acidity and tartness in a tomato sauce are what sets it apart, but a little creaminess doesn’t hurt either. Add butter to get this creamy and tomatoey sauce that leaves a lovely taste in the mouth. Experimenting is the key. You can try to incorporate butter into other dishes too.
8. Perfect Tomato in a Vinaigrette
Adding the perfect tomato in a vinaigrette means preparing the tomatoes in the best way possible.
Season the tomatoes first, and then let them drain. Use the drained juice in your vinaigrette. The added juice can contribute to the acidity of the vinaigrette.
9. Grate Butter When It’s Too Hard and Cold
Grating it is your best option if you like butter but are impatient to wait for it to soften enough for use. Get your butter from the freezer and grate it in a bowl. Guarantee, it almost instantly thaws out. No more wasting time just waiting for the butter to be soft.
10. Using a Potato Masher to Grind Beef
A potato masher is great for making creamy mash, but that’s not all it does. You can also use it when cooking ground beef in a skillet.
Get your potato masher, put your ground beef in, and just work your way with it. You’ll get even pieces of meat in just 10 seconds.
11. Eyeballing Measurements by Following the Recipe First
The trick to eyeballing measurements is getting a feel out of their weight and counting drops by following the original recipe.
For example, when using an oil drizzler, count the number of seconds it takes to fill a tablespoon. The next time you use it, you won’t need a spoon; just stick with the number of seconds. With the spices, see how a tablespoon feels in your palms. The next time, just try to recreate the feeling.
12. Toasted Bread Crumbs on Mac and Cheese
OG mac and cheese tastes delicious on its own, but adding toasted bread crumbs turns it into a whole new level of dish. Sprinkling bread crumbs on top will add a new texture to the usually creamy and soft mac and cheese. You can add the bread crumbs before serving the dish or quickly put them in an oven for a toasted crust.
13. More Shredded Cheese and Parm on Top of Mac and Cheese
If you’re not into bread crumbs, you can make your mac and cheese “cheesier.” You don’t have to change the ratio of all your cheese in the dish. Just sprinkle some parmesan and shredded cheese, and you’re good. You also have the freedom to choose your favorite cheese as an add-on!
14. Pre-peel Garlic in Bulk and Keep Them in the Freezer
Garlic is a must-have in the kitchen, and peeling is not really enjoyable. The trick is to either buy pre-peeled garlic or peel regular garlic all in one go, mince them, and then stick them in the freezer in a zip back and divide in cubes. Whenever you need garlic, you just need to smash a cube.
15. Add Miso Paste on Your Buttered Noodles
Buttered noodles taste good, but if you’re looking for something to spice up your vanilla recipe, miso paste is the way to go. It will also taste perfectly with egg noodles. To top everything, add a little fresh parm to elevate the dish further.
16. Best Cooked Onion Ever
Onion is one of the most underrated vegetables. Simply cut a small hole in an onion and place a bouillon cube inside with a tablespoon of butter. Wrap the onion in foil and place it in the oven at 400 degrees for about an hour.
What do you get after this? The cheapest and best onion snack in the world.
17. Use Scissors to Cut a Pizza
According to FRIENDS’ Joey Tribbiani, the best pizza is two pizzas. Cutting the pie using scissors makes the entire experience more enjoyable and convenient.
It might not be the best choice for a Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, but it’s definitely worth trying for other pizzas.
18. Toast Bread Before Making Your Melt Sandwich
Planning to make a melt sandwich for your midnight snack? Toast the bread first! This will give you a crispier sandwich that doesn’t get soggy even when you add tuna. Make sure to put butter on both sides of the bread for maximum flavor!
19. Use Scissors Instead of Knife
When it comes to the most underrated and underappreciated kitchen tools, the award goes to scissors. All Korean households consider scissors as important as knives. It’s a wonder when the entire world will catch up. Scissors are way easier and safer to use when cutting food!
20. Soak Nuts or Seeds Before Roasting Them
Try soaking the nuts or seeds before roasting them. Ultimately, they’ll get crispier since their shells will soften from the soak. But you know what works best? Soaking them in tea.
The tea flavors can be integrated into your seeds or nuts and taste wonderful. Of course, it’s an entirely different thing if you’re not a fan of teas.
21. Use Your Broiler to the Full Potential
Do you have a broiler at home? Try cooking potatoes, chicken, and steaks in your broiler. After that, challenge yourself to broil a fish.
What’s the advantage of broiling everything? No more preheating the oven or wasting a lot of time waiting.
22. Use Baking Soda for a Quick Marinade
Baking soda is such a fantastic kitchen necessity that it goes beyond baking and cleaning. You can use it for a quick marinade that can transform your meat into a tender-licking-good meal.
Try soaking the meat in a baking soda solution for 30 minutes. You can mix the baking soda solution in the marinade, or if you have time, marinade the meat after the soak.
23. Cutting Onions Through Both of the Stems
If you want to make a nice onion wedge, cutting through both stems is the key. Cut the whole onion in half, going through both the stems. Lay it flat on the chopping board and cut it into vertical wedges. You can also cut it into rings.
24. Double the Lemon Juice for the Hollandaise
Are you fond of hollandaise sauce? If you want to put a twist on your hollandaise, double the amount of lemon juice you pour into it. But allow the juices to completely evaporate.
Doing this gives you a more lemony flavor, and the sauce maintains its creamy consistency.
25. Use a Blender to Make a Hollandaise
Make a hollandaise sauce conveniently by using a blender. Do all the mixing for your sauce in a blender rather than a large bowl. You no longer need to whisk your time away to create the perfect hollandaise. And you’ll always use your blender that’s been collecting cobwebs for a long time.
26. Use a Stand Mixer to Shred Meat
You can shred meat with your hands or using forks if they’re tender enough. But why dirty your hands with meat when you can use the stand mixer your friends gifted you on your last birthday? Shred everything using a stand mixer, from rotisserie chicken to salad, in no time.
27. Microwave Rock-Hard Brown Sugar
You left your brown sugar out on the countertop that they’ve become so hard? Put it in the microwave for around 30 seconds. You’ll have your brown sugar flakey like when you first bought it.
28. Use a Meat Thermometer When Baking
You don’t have to limit the use of meat thermometers to meat. They can also test the doneness of baked goods like bread, cakes, and muffins.
Before using them for baking, make sure they’re clean and free of meat before using them on baked goods. If you don’t like the idea, just get two thermometers for each.
29. Crush the Garlic Cloves First Then Remove Skin
When peeling garlic gloves, lightly crush them using the knife’s flat side—this makes removing the skin easier.
Adding a little salt will also help when chopping the cloves. This will prevent the pieces of garlic from sticking to your fingers. And they will taste more delicious too.
30. Add Some Acids to a Sauce
When making a sauce, elevate the taste by adding some acidity to the mix. You can use cider vinegar, white, or red wine. It’s really your choice.
The addition makes a huge difference in taste! However, consider the compatibility with the flavors, and don’t just add it for the sake of adding something.
31. Use Mayo Instead of Butter for Grilled Cheese
If you’re tired of using butter, mayo can be a fantastic alternative. This is best applied when making grilled cheese. Apply mayo on both sides of the bread for optimal taste. It also looks good since it turns into a delicate brown color.
11 Quirky Items That Confuse Non-Americans About American Homes
Behold the internet’s treasure trove of knowledge! Amidst my casual scrolling, I stumbled upon an interesting question: “non-Americans, what do you reckon resides within the four walls of every American’s home?”
As I looked into the answers, I found many interesting comments that made me even more curious. And now, I’m excited to share them with you.
MSN Writer, Radical FIRE
Expertise: Entertainment, Travel, Interior Design, and Personal Improvement Niches
Education: Bachelor of Science in Tourism, Major in Development Tourism Management at Ateneo de Naga University
Experience: Marisa Bolivar is a content writer with 10 years of experience in creating blogs and articles across different industries on the web. She has explored many niches in her years working as a content specialist with her favorite zeroing on entertainment, from books to movies and TV shows. Marisa is also a bookworm, who has a fondness for personal improvement and philosophical authors like Paulo Coelho and Mitch Albom.