Monday, May 05, 2014

Assorted Kitchen Tips and Tricks

I have always been one who likes to find the easiest way to do kitchen chores and cooking tasks. I am not lazy per se, but I don’t believe in making things harder than they really need to be. And if it is possible, I like to do things in batches, to save time and resources.

When I turn the oven on to bake squash, for example, I am likely to put in some potatoes to bake alongside.  Or I might have a batch of cookies ready to bake when the squash comes out of the oven.  Once it’s on and hot, I like to make the most of it!

When I roast chicken breasts, I will do several and either refrigerate or freeze them so they are ready to go on days I need to make meals quickly.

I like to use my crock pot to batch cook pulled pork or shredded chicken. I make pots and pots of homemade soups to freeze.

One of my favorite time savers is to peel whole heads of garlic at one time… and then keep the cloves in a glass jar in the fridge, to be used over the next few days.

Assorted Kitchen Tips
I separate the cloves and then slice off the end that was attached.  The I carefully peel the papery skin from each clove and store them in a glass jar till I need to use them.

May kitchen tips 002
Having peeled cloves ready to use is a nice time-saver.

Here are a couple more of my favorite foodie tips:
  • After cutting apples or avocados, coat the exposed flesh with lemon juice to keep it from turning brown due to oxidization.
  • To remove stains from tea cups, put about 1/2 tsp of baking soda in the bottom of the cup and then fill it with hot water. The stains will rub away very easily.
  • To soften brown sugar that has hardened, place it in a sealed container with  small piece of frozen bread. As the bread thaws, the moisture from it will be drawn into the sugar and it will soften in a few hours.
  • When we lived on the boat I started placing a few grains of rice in my salt shaker to keep the salt from getting moist and clumping.  I still do that.
  • When your fingers smell of onions or garlic, sprinkle some lemon juice on them to remove the smell.
  • If you oversalt a dish, add a bit of sugar to it. It will taste less salty.
  • The easiest way to peel a hard boiled egg is to tap the shell all over with a spoon to crack it. Then run the spoon, bowl side down all around between the shell and the egg. 
I polled some of my online Weight Watchers buddies to see if they have anything to share. These are some of their great ideas:

  • Keep your avocado's in the fridge and take them out 1-2 days before you want to use them so that they don't all ripen at the same time.  You can have a steady supply of them this way as they will keep in the fridge for weeks
from MISCHE:
  • Lemons/limes, too hard to squeeze to get juices out? Zap in microwave for about 20 seconds.   Press fruit by rolling out on counter for a couple of rolls. Now, ready for juicing!

from TOPAZ21:
  • To keep bread,rolls, etc. fresh, freeze the slices in baggies.  I do 2 slices in each then remove from the freezer the night before and let thaw in the fridge.
  • When you buy fresh herbs if you stand the stems in a small glass with water and keep in the fridge they will last longer, or put them in your ice cube trays, cover with water and freeze.  Once frozen you can put them in a plastic bag or container.

  • When bananas start getting old, I cut them and freeze them for smoothies.
  • With pineapples, after I slice them, I get a bunch of excess pulp and juice that I pour into ice cube trays and freeze for smoothies.
  • I keep my baking in the freezer, it lasts longer and I have something when I want it.
  • In the summer, I pour ground coffee into mesh bags and let it steep overnight in a pitcher. Then I have iced coffee for the week.

And I recently asked some of my colleagues at FitFluential to see what food or kitchen tips they would like to share… here are some of those ideas with links to their blogs posts:






Thanks to all of you who shared some tips 
for making things easier in the kitchen.

Check out my TIPS and TRICKS   tab for more lots more ideas.

Do you have any good ideas to add to the list?


  1. great tips! i learned a lot!

    1. As did I when I read the responses I got. Thanks for your comment Linz.

  2. If you put garlic in a bowl, cover it with another bowl, and shake it like a maraca it will fall out if its shell!

    1. That is cool - gonna try it for sure. Thanks so much.

  3. These are great tips! Especially the garlic one! I hate cutting garlic! Also, I love using my food processor to chop things up to save time!

    1. Thanks! I love my food processor too. Thankfully I can store it in a cupboard where it is handy to get to to use.

  4. Great info! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Glad you liked the post. Thanks for stopping by.

  5. I love these, I do a lot of them. When you make guacamole, leave the pit in the mix until it is time to serve and it will keep it from getting brown.

  6. Awesome. Gonna try that for sure. Thanks!


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