10 Kitchen Hacks You Need to Know





Love to cook but hate all those tedious, time-consuming tasks that seem necessary in order to get anything done in the kitchen? From keeping your cookies soft and chewy to peeling whole heads of garlic in an instant, these ten kitchen hacks will have you looking like a culinary master in no time! Whether you’re the next Alton Brown or you can barely tell the difference between a teaspoon and a tablespoon, you’ll feel like a pro next time you’re slaving away over some French toast or homemade pie crust. Don’t be afraid to throw a few of these gems at your friends next time the subject of cooking comes up and you’re left feeling like the only one who can’t scramble eggs, either, because all is fair in love and baking.

Ready to up your game and wow the family with your handy new skills? Let’s get started!

10. Grated Butter for Perfect Dough


Making anything from pie crusts to biscuits requires skillfully incorporating butter into flour without leaving behind giant clumps of hard butter or a goopy mess from butter that’s too soft. The easiest way to do this is to freeze and then grate the butter before adding to the flour. You’ll end up with the perfect consistency for flawless dough in no time, without all the effort! And don’t worry about the butter being too frozen to incorporate well – the butter will thaw to the perfect temp as you grate. Voila!

The even distribution of butter will ensure a tender, flaky crust every time, and eliminates the common problem of over mixing (which can leave your crust flat and greasy instead of light and airy).

9. Homemade Taco Shells


Sure, you could buy pre-packaged taco shells from the grocery store, but they’re often small, broken, stale and chock full of hydrogenated oils and preservatives. You can easily get much more delicious bang for your buck if you opt to make taco shells yourself at home. Don’t worry – homemade taco shells are easier than you think, and there’s no need to stand over a pan of hot oil frying each one to perfection. Simply microwave a few corn tortillas for about 30 seconds, coat the microwaved tortillas with a light spritz of cooking spray (both sides) and then drape the tortillas over two bars of your oven rack. Bake at 375 degrees for seven to ten minutes.

You can try this with flour tortillas, as well, for a flavorful twist on traditional taco shells. Just be careful not to bake too long, and enjoy your delicious, freshly-made (and much healthier) taco shells!

8. Perfectly Cooked Fish


Cooking fish can be tricky, especially when it seems to stick to any surface you cook it on! Next time you want to bake or grill fish, try slicing up a few lemons to cook the fish on top of. Simply spread the lemon slices over the grill or in your baking dish, and lay the fish on top for perfectly cooked and delicious lemon flavor, without the sticking! This is especially helpful when grilling fish, since keeping the grill greased enough to keep fish from sticking is a difficult task. Now you can enjoy healthy, delicious fish anytime, without the hassle!

7. Egg Freshness Test


Not sure how long those eggs have been in the refrigerator? Not to worry! There’s a fast and simple way to find out whether or not your eggs are fresh enough to eat. Simply fill a glass with cold water and set your egg in the water. If the egg lays flat on the bottom, horizontally, your egg is really fresh and ready to eat! If the egg sinks to the bottom and tilts up vertically a bit, the egg is fresh enough to eat, but should be eaten soon. If the egg floats or stands on end, toss the egg out – it’s no good for eating anymore!

6. Open a Jar With Duct Tape


If you have trouble opening jars, but don’t want to invest in yet another kitchen gadget, just grab yourself a roll of duct tape and you’ll have that jar open in seconds flat. Simply tear off a strip of duct tape and attach it to half the lid, leaving enough of a “handle” for you to grasp firmly. If the duct tape is cheap or not very strong, double up the tape first, by stacking two strips together. Make sure the tape is attached only to the lid and not the jar itself. Once you’ve got everything secured, simply hold the jar firmly in one hand while pulling on the strip of tape you left as a  handle with the other. Just a quick tug should get the lid to pop open.

If that doesn’t work, try tapping the edge of the lid on a countertop or running the lid under hot water to break the seal. You can also use a nail to tap a small hole in the top to release the vacuum seal. In a pinch, wrapping a few rubber bands around the lid will give you more leverage for opening stubborn jars.

Tye started her writing career in journalism and now enjoys writing on a variety of topics, from health and beauty to lifestyle and fitness. Find Tye on LinkedIn!

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