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13 Time-Saving Kitchen Hacks You Need to Know

You want to cook a healthy meal for the whole family, but time is of the essence. It’s a great thought, cooking a meal from scratch and serving something fresh to the table that the whole family enjoys. But when the sun rises and the daily rush begins, you soon realise there aren’t enough hours in the day.

We want you to spend more time at the kitchen table and less time at the cooker. Cutting back on prep time means getting crafty. But how do you do it? By following our list of time-saving kitchen hacks:

1. Keep Pots from Boiling Over

It’s easy to get sidetracked in the kitchen. Only to find your pot of water has boiled over and you’ve got a foamy mess to clean up. Grab a wooden spoon and place it over the pot. The wood absorbs some of the heat and pops some of the bubbles too.

2. Soften Butter in Minutes 

How many times have you wanted to soften butter, thought I’ll quickly blast it in the microwave and been left with nothing but a puddle? Fill a glass with warm water and once it’s warmed up, empty it and put the glass over the top of your butter.

3. De-crust Your Microwave 

Soak a sponge in 1/4 cup of water then heat it on high for one minute. The heat will clean your sponge and loosen the dirt in the microwave. Now, all you need is some elbow grease.

4. Bake Potatoes in the Microwave then Oven

Everyone loves an irresistibly crispy potato. But the long wait? Not so much. Halve the time it takes to cook a jacket potato by microwaving it for about five minutes beforehand. Then pop it in the oven to finish baking for half an hour.

5. Don’t Waste Time Flipping

Pre-heat your baking sheet before roasting things like chips and veggies. You won’t need to flip your food half way through cooking which doesn’t just save time, it evenly browns food too.

6. Use a Japanese Mandoline 

Ok, this isn’t really a kitchen-hack. But we recommend the Vogue Japanese Mandoline if you find yourself slicing and prepping loads of food. The sharp blade makes light work of vegetables, giving you even slices that cook perfectly. There are plenty of tools that save you time in the kitchen-take a look at our article on choosing the right tool for every task to see what else you can use to shave minutes off your cooking.

7. Use a Waste Bowl on Your Countertop 

Prepping and countless trips to the bin come hand in hand. Grab a large bowl and keep it on your countertop while you’re prepping and cooking. This not only keeps your countertop tidy, it also saves your aching feet.

8. Get the Most Out of Lemons and Limes

Nuke lemons and limes in the microwave for 10-30 seconds. It’ll soften thick peels to help you get more juice from your citrus fruit.

9. Avoid Sticky Kitchen Tools

Coat your measuring spoon with hot water so anything sticky pours out easily. No need to scrape out the last bit.

10. Reheat Pasta Evenly

Reheat pasta and rice in the microwave the right way with this handy tip. Just mould the pasta into the shape of a doughnut and you’ll be left with an evenly reheated dish in minutes-minus the cold middle.

11. Cook a Whole Bird Evenly

If you’re cooking an entire turkey or chicken, ice the breast of the bird first. Dark thigh meat needs more time to cook than white breast meat, chilling the breast encourages even cooking.

12. Rid Cooking Smells from Your Hands

Washing your hands doesn’t quite get rid of the pungent smell of garlic and onions. And you don’t want it to taint the rest of your food. So what do you do? Hold your hands under cold running water while rubbing stainless steel. The molecules in the steel bind with the strong-smelling molecules stuck on your hands.

13. Shred Cooked Meat with Claws

Just like the Vogue Japanese Mandoline, these OXO Meat Claws are something you need in your kitchen if you cook a lot of meat. No more feeble attempts at shredding meat with forks. Simply shred cooked meat and move it to your plate, all without getting your hands dirty.

OXO Meat Claws CN186

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