If you're the kind of person who loves to cook but just doesn't have the time for it, or simply want to spruce up your kitchen skills, you've come to the right place. Cooking takes a huge amount of time and effort, and let's not forget about the giant mound of dishes that need to be washed afterward! But what if we told you that you could make delicious meals without all the hassle? Check out this list of the most innovative and creative cooking hacks we've assembled just for you, and save loads of time and effort in the kitchen!
Make the Fluffiest Whip Cream by Shaking the Ingredients Inside a Jar
Making smooth whip cream doesn't have to be hard. In fact, you don't even need to whip cream by hand; doing that takes a huge amount of time, effort, and muscle. Instead, you just need to grab yourself some cream, powdered sugar, some vanilla, and any other flavorings of your choice. Then, pop all of these ingredients into a clean jam jar or bottle and shake.
After a good shake, you should find that your cream is light, fluffy, and utterly delicious. Just make sure that you close the jar tightly before you start shaking it!
Get Ice-Cold Drinks in Minutes by Wrapping the Bottle in a Paper Towel
Although some drinks are best served at room temperature, there's nothing quite like having an ice-cold beer or Dr. Pepper on a hot day. But what's the best way to get this chill? While some people just place the whole bottle in the freezer to cool a drink down, the best way to get ice-cold drinks in minutes is to wrap a wet paper towel around the bottle in the freezer.
The water in the wet towel freezes much quicker than the liquid in the bottle, meaning you don't have to wait too long for that ice-cold drink you've been craving.
This Jar Trick Will Have the Peel Falling Right off a Boiled Egg
Hard-boiled eggs can make the perfect mid-afternoon snack and taste amazing in a cobb salad. However, peeling the shell of an egg can be a pretty messy and time-consuming process if you don't know how to cheat the system. Luckily, there's a pretty easy hack that will change the game when it comes to your eggs. All you have to do is put your egg in a jar of cold water with the lid screwed on.
Then, you have to give the jar a good shake. As you do so, the shell should become loose, meaning it should fall right off when you pull the egg out.
Microwave Your Tacos in a Cup for the Perfect Shape
Tacos are 99% reliable. Of course, they always taste delicious - and not just on taco Tuesday. But while they excel in the taste department, there's no doubt that tacos lose some points due to their lack of structural integrity. No matter how hard we try and keep these things together, the contents always seem to drop all over our hands. There is a way to stop that, though.
By half-rolling your tortilla into a microwave-safe cup and cooking it in the microwave for 30 seconds, you can ensure that it maintains its shape and structure throughout the eating process.
Easily Separate Egg Yolks With a Plastic Bottle
There's nothing more infuriating than a recipe that calls for separate egg yolks or egg whites. The whole process of separating eggs is messy and time-consuming, and a lot of the time, it results in broken egg yolks that are no longer useful! Thankfully, it doesn't have to be that way. By using a plastic bottle, you can easily separate the whites from the egg with minimal fuss or mess.
All you have to do is squeeze the mouth of the bottle over the egg yolk. As you release your grip, the yolk should be sucked into the bottle.
Put Baking Powder Into Grits or Polenta to Speed up the Cooking
If you're someone that loves dishes such as grits or polenta, you'll know that they take time and energy to make. In fact, these dishes can sometimes take hours to perfect - which is time that a lot of people don't have. Thankfully, there is an easy hack to making sure that these dishes taste just as good when they're cooked in half the time. And that trick involves baking soda.
By adding a small amount of baking soda mixed with water, you can speed up the cooking process without sacrificing the taste. Just make sure that you don't use too much!
Get All of the Kernels Out Before Digging Into the Popcorn
Everyone knows the struggle when it comes to popcorn. Sure, popped popcorn itself is delicious - but nobody likes grabbing a handful of kernels. They taste horrible, and don't get us started on the expensive dental work many people have had to face due to these kernels! But don't worry; there's a surefire way to ensure you have kernel-less popcorn, and you don't need to do anything fancy.
Microwaveable popcorn bags were actually designed to help you get rid of popcorn kernels. Simply open the bag a small amount and turn it upside down to shake them out.
Use a Mixer to Easily and Quickly Shred Your Chicken
In today's day and age, cooking doesn't have to take hours and hours. And you certainly don't have to waste your time painstakingly shredding your chicken with your hands. In fact, the solution to many people's problems is often staring right in front of them. That's because the best way to shred a chicken is with a kitchen appliance we all have in our kitchens. Yes, a mixer!
Simply put your chicken in a bowl, turn on your mixer, and voila! You'll have shredded chicken in seconds, leaving you more time to eat the delicious meal you make.
Always Have Fresh Garlic Ready to Cook With by Bulk Freezing It Beforehand
Let's be honest: no dish is complete without garlic. And while it's possible to buy garlic granules or powder, there's nothing quite like having fresh garlic in a dish. However, peeling and chopping fresh garlic takes time - something that some of us don't have! And that's why you'll thank yourself for bulk-freezing garlic ahead of time. By doing this, you'll have fresh garlic on tap all day, every day.
To master this hack, simply peel and chop a whole bunch of garlic, put it into an ice cube tray, and pop it into the freezer. Then, you can just grab a cube when you need it!
Clean a Blender by Blending Warm Water and Dish Soap
Anyone who has tried to clean a blender will know that it's not an easy task. From the sharp blades to the annoying shape, it's a given that you'll almost always end up with bits of smoothie or soup stuck to the bottom. However, cleaning a blender doesn't have to be that hard. With just some warm water, soap, and a nifty hack at your disposal, you can effortlessly clean a blender in just a few seconds.
Fill a little under half of your blender with warm water, squeeze in some dish soap, and turn the blender on for a short little blitz. Just remember to put the lid on!
Forget Pizza Dough - Make Delicious Homemade Pizza on a Tortilla
If you live alone but love pizza, you've probably run into a few problems. You either have to order a pizza that you can't afford, buy a pizza from the store that's way too big, or make one from scratch - and that takes hours! But it doesn't have to. If you want to make yourself a personal pizza at home in minutes, you don't need pizza dough. You need a tortilla instead.
By spreading marinara sauce and the toppings of your choice on your tortilla and putting it in the oven, you can create a delicious pizza without all the hassle.
Level Up Your Popcorn With Cheese Powder
Sure, popcorn is delicious on its own. But what if we told you that you could instantly level up your popcorn game with something that you probably already have in your pantry? Macaroni and cheese popcorn is something that everyone needs to try at least once, and the best part is that it doesn't take a huge amount of time or effort to make. In fact, it can be ready in seconds.
When your popcorn is popped, and in a bowl, all you need to do is sprinkle some macaroni and cheese powder on top. It really is as easy as that.
Soak Your Pomegranates in Water to Deseed in a Jiffy
Although pomegranates are delicious in every way, there's no doubt about the fact that they're also pretty annoying. De-seeding this fruit seems to take hours, and most of the time it's impossible to de-seed them completely. But it doesn't have to be that difficult. By utilizing the "underwater method," you should be able to de-seed a pomegranate in just a few minutes. Plus, you won't get covered in pomegranate juice!
Simply cut the fruit in half and place it in a bowl of water. Then, start picking out the seeds and watch them sink to the bottom of the bowl. As you continue, the membrane should start to float!
Use a Skillet for Quicker Spaghetti
Most people assume you should cook your spaghetti in a pot, and they're not wrong. While this is the traditional way to cook pasta, that doesn't mean you have to always play by the rules. By switching things up and cooking your spaghetti in a skillet, your water will boil much quicker - meaning your spaghetti will be ready in half the time. But that's not all.
Thanks to the starchy water in the skillet, you can also elevate your pasta sauce and turn it into something delicious and more suited to your palate. What could be better than that?
Put Your Garlic in the Microwave to Peel It Easily
Fresh garlic is far superior to the alternatives you can buy at the grocery store, but peeling it can be tough. It sometimes seems as though the cloves are superglued to the bulb, and you ultimately end up with hands that stink for three days straight. But what you might not realize is that a microwave can help you peel this stubborn garlic in just a few short seconds.
By heating the garlic for just 20 seconds, you should find that the cloves slide out of the bulb with ease. So, they'll be no more smelly hands for you!
Have an Easy Breakfast by Quickly Preparing Overnight Oats in a Peanut Butter Jar
If you're the kind of person who snoozes your alarm way more than you should, then you might often leave the house without having breakfast. But as we all know, breakfast is the most important meal of the day! So, why not pre-prepare your breakfast ahead of time and have it ready for you in the morning? All you need is an almost-empty jar of peanut butter, some oats, and the toppings of your choice.
By pouring your oats and toppings into the peanut butter jar and giving it a good shake, you can wake up to a healthy and tasty breakfast to keep you going until lunchtime.
Add Anchovies as a Nutritious and Protein-Filled Salt Alternative
Whether you're looking to elevate your cooking or whether you're just trying to cut down on your salt intake, anchovies could be your new cooking best friend. Although many people are put off by these fishy little creatures, anchovies are all-rounders that can make almost every dish pop. When mixed into your food, they won't taste fishy at all. Instead, they'll make the whole dish taste even more delicious.
To avoid that fishy taste and get the salt, try only to use one or two anchovies per dish. It doesn't seem like it'll make a difference, but you'll soon wish you had known this hack earlier!
Soak Your Onions in Hot Water for Cry-Less Peeling
There are so many theories when it comes to peeling onions. Yes, some say you need to place a cold spoon on your tongue to stop your eyes from watering - while others swear by wearing ski goggles. However, if you want a fool-proof way to stop yourself from crying while peeling onions, you just need to grab a bowl of hot water and have a few minutes to spare.
By soaking onions in hot water for a couple of minutes before you peel them, you should be able to avoid the stinging sensation in your tear ducts. You can also pop them in the freezer for 10-15 minutes!
Save Time and Get More Texture and Nutrition by Leaving Mashed Potatoes Unpeeled
For decades, people have been peeling their potatoes when making mashed potatoes. By doing this, you get perfectly white and creamy mash. But do you really want that? If you're bored of the same old mashed potatoes, you might want to skip peeling them altogether. Not only will this save you a huge amount of time in the kitchen, but you might enjoy your mashed potatoes even more than you did before.
Potato skins will add a layer of texture and taste to your mashed potatoes. Plus, potato skins are super healthy and can have 12 times more antioxidants than the flesh!
Make Your Own Deep-Dish Pizza in Minutes
Famous for its roots in Chicago, the deep-dish pizza is unlike any other pizza out there. It's delicious, it's cheesy, and it's a meal that will leave you stuffed. And while most people assume that they can only order a deep-dish pizza in a restaurant or fast food joint, that's not the case at all! This nifty cooking hack will allow you to make a deep-dish pizza in the comfort of your own home.
All you need to do is buy a frozen grocery store pizza and let it thaw for around 20 minutes before placing it in an oiled pan and baking for 10 minutes. The best part? You can add your own toppings!
Forget Buying Separate Chicken Parts - Buy a Precooked Rotisserie Chicken Instead
This hack might not be helpful for vegetarians, but if you're a chicken lover, you need to listen up! Especially if you buy separate chicken breasts, legs, and wings each week for different meals. That's because you can save yourself some serious time and energy if you buy one large rotisserie chicken for everything. After all, one multi-purpose rotisserie chicken has everything you require in one single purchase.
When you have your chicken, tear it up into chunks and use them for different dishes throughout the week. But if you know you're not going to eat it all, make sure you freeze it.
Turn Your Leftovers Into a Quiche
If you accidentally make too much food, don't just throw your leftovers in the trash. Not only could they go to someone in need, but you could also repurpose them yourself! Yes, one of the best ways to make use of the food you have leftover is to turn them into a quiche. And there's no doubt about the fact that you'll be making this delicious treat time and time again.
The best thing about a quiche is that anything goes! Simply mix your leftovers with egg, pour them into a pastry case, and watch the magic happen in the oven.
Stop Thawing Frozen Fish
If you love fish, you might have a whole drawer full of the stuff in your freezer. But how many of you thaw your fish before you cook it? It might surprise you to learn that you don't need to do this at all. It's completely safe to cook your fish from frozen, and it'll actually taste much better if you cook it this way! Plus, it'll make your life so much easier.
By cooking your fish from frozen, you don't need to worry about pre-planning your meals. You can just get home from work, grab your fish out of the freezer, and cook it right there and then.
Make French Toast in a Mug
Have you ever craved French toast so much that you were willing to deal with all of the messy dishes that come with making it? Well, we're here to tell you that you don't have to! If you want to make a quick and easy batch of French toast, you'll just need a mug and the tasty ingredients to bring this sweet treat to life. Then, you'll want to rip up some pieces of bread.
After that, pour over a batter made from eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Pop it in the microwave for a minute before topping it with maple syrup and heating it for another 15 seconds.
Use Paprika to Quickly Get That Barbecue Feeling
Nothing compares to the taste of food that's been grilled on a barbeque, right? Well, that might not be true after all. Although very few people have time to barbeque after a hard day's work, you don't need to fire up the grill to achieve that flame-grilled taste. By adding paprika to your food, you can mimic the taste and flavor of barbeque without all of the extra hassles.
Paprika will add a smokiness to your dish that will have you reminiscing about the summertime. And while it's not a dead-ringer for real-life barbeque, it's certainly very close.
Frozen Pastries Are Quick, Cheap, and Delicious
If you're someone who has time to bake pastries on a weekly basis, then we'd love it if you could adopt us! But the average Joe doesn't have a spare few hours to roll out the dough and wait for it to bake. Thankfully, there's a hack for that. And it involves the frozen pastries that you'll find in the frozen section of the grocery store and your credit card.
Although some turn their noses up at frozen pastries, these baked goods are designed to be delicious and efficient. Plus, you can make them your own by adding your own toppings if you want.
Heat up Your Leftovers Using the Microwave-Oven Method for Best Tasting Results
Eating leftovers is a great way to avoid food waste, but everyone knows that leftovers never taste the same as they did originally, right? While this is certainly true when it comes to microwaving your leftovers, the same can't be said for using a microwave first and then switching to an oven. Microwaving food on its own will change the original texture, but an oven can easily fix this dilemma.
By first defrosting your food in the microwave, you can heat up the inside. When you switch to the oven, you can focus on heating up the outside.
Use Instant Noodles to Make Tasty Homemade Ramen
Let's be honest; instant noodles have a bad reputation. And while it's your choice whether you eat instant noodles or not, we're here to tell you that it's super easy to turn these instant noodles into something delicious. In fact, they're perfect when you want to make a no-fuss ramen from the comfort of your own home! Doing this will make your ramen full of flavor and ready in just a few minutes.
The best part about instant noodle ramen is the fact that you can make it entirely your own. You can add peanut butter to the sauce, vegetables on the side, and more.
Turn Your Leftovers Into a Whole New Meal
Whether you make too much food or whether you just want to get ahead of the week, leftovers can be a real game changer when you're strapped for time. This food can be heated up in minutes and can be in your stomach in no time at all. But what happens if you don't want to eat the same thing you did earlier in the week? Well, you can recycle your leftovers!
By getting creative and turning your leftovers into a different dish, you can keep things interesting. So, why not use leftover rice to make a burrito? Or maybe a buddha bowl?
Make Your Life Easier With Instant Food
When wandering around the grocery store, you've probably come across instant foods. From instant mashed potatoes to instant noodles, the options are endless. But if you normally just walk past these things without a second glance, it might be a good idea to give them a go. After all, they're incredibly popular for a reason! Not only are they cheaper than fresh alternatives, but they're also deliciously easy to use.
By using these instant products, you can save yourself a huge amount of time and energy. Plus, you can always add your own ingredients to personalize them to your taste.
Bulk Cook Potatoes and You Can Throw Together an Easy Meal Anytime
You probably don't need us to tell you that potatoes are one of the best foods out there. They can be boiled, fried, roasted, and baked, and they're extremely versatile. But if you're someone who uses potatoes a few times every single week, you might find that you spend half of your life peeling and preparing these potatoes for each meal. Totaled up, that's a whole lot of time you're wasting!
If you dedicate one day a week to bulk preparing all of your potatoes, though, you could make cooking a breeze. Simply pop them in the refrigerator and pull them out when you need them.
Make Apple Pie in a Mug in Mere Minutes
There's nothing quite like a slice of warm apple pie on a cold winter's day. But anyone who has ever made this from scratch will know that it's not easy. In fact, it takes so much time and effort that most people simply choose to wait until they can eat apple pie at a restaurant! We're here to change the game, though, as this lazy apple pie hack will allow you to make this dessert at home in minutes.
All you need to do is place apple cubes, butter, sugar, cinnamon, and salt into a microwave for five minutes, and then top the whole thing off with graham crackers! It's as simple as that.
Save Money by Using Lemon Juice Instead of Lemons
Most of the recipes you'll find online or in recipe books will call for fresh lemons and limes. But a lot of time, you only need these fruits for the juice, and you end up wasting the carcass! It's pretty easy to combat this waste, though, and all you need to do is stock up on bottles of lemon and lime juice from the grocery store. This way, you don't have to squeeze.
Bottled juice is a great lazy alternative to picking the seeds out of your meal, and it'll work out so much cheaper. Sure, it doesn't taste quite as fresh, but it's so much easier.
Use a Magnet to Easily Open a Can Without Any Cuts to Your Fingers
Opening a can is often a dangerous business. Not only do you have to try and use a can opener, but you then have to lift up the sharp lid without slicing your finger in half. And if you're prone to accidents, it can be a risky move! Thankfully, it doesn't have to be. All you need is one simple thing to ensure that you can open a can safely.
By attaching a strong magnet to the top of the lid, you should be able to use the can opener to lift the lid. This way, you don't have to use your fingers!
Stop Frying Your Bacon - It's Much Easier to Put It in the Oven
Fried bacon is delicious. You don't need us to tell you that. From the amazing smell to the crispy edges, it's no wonder that most people fry their bacon. However, this process not only uses a lot of oil but it's also pretty dangerous and messy. Grease splatters everywhere, and you spend the rest of your day cleaning your kitchen - and your clothes! So, why not bake your bacon instead?
By placing your strips of bacon onto a cooking sheet and then onto a baking pan, you can pop your bacon in the oven and forget about it (and the cleaning) for a few minutes.
Blend Your Hollandaise Sauce
Hollandaise is the perfect addition to any breakfast dish, but most people wait until they're dining out at a restaurant to order it. That's because it's so easy to get hollandaise sauce wrong. Without the correct amount of whisking, it'll just look like scrambled eggs - so how do you get it right? One of the best hacks we've learned is to blend your hollandaise sauce in the blender you have in your kitchen.
All you have to do is pop all of the ingredients into the blender and watch the magic happen. There's no whisking involved, and the sauce will be ready in seconds!
Get Your Veggie Servings by Splicing up Some Pico De Gallo
Many people struggle to add vegetables to their diet. But in their attempts, they simply shove a whole load of vegetables on their plate and hope that they'll taste delicious. Nine times out of ten, they don't! Thankfully, there's a super easy hack to eat vegetables and enjoy them at the same time. And that hack revolves around the Mexican favorite, pico de Gallo. Often called salsa fresco, this is a salsa full of vegetables.
Not only does pico de gallo taste delicious, but it's also super easy to make. But if you don't want to make it yourself, just buy it from the store!
Use Boxed Dessert Mixes
Many people around the world have a sweet tooth, but curbing that sweet craving when you have no time can be difficult. Thankfully, there's a super easy way to finish off your meal with brownies or apple pie without having to put in too much work. And all you need to do is head to the grocery store and stock up on boxed dessert mixes! They're super cheap, easy, and tasty.
Instead of making these desserts from scratch, you can use these boxes to have the sweet treats really in 15 minutes. Plus, you can add your own ingredients to suit your taste.
Turn a Ruined Cake Into a Delicious Trifle
Anyone who has ever attempted to bake a cake will know that there's real art to it. You have to bake it for the right amount of time, and then you have to try and get it out of the tin before it cracks! And while it would be easy to throw a ruined cake into the trash, this is your sign to salvage it and turn it into a trifle instead.
As long as the cake still tastes good, you can layer it in a glass or jar with some cream, chocolate, fruit, or whatever you like! The trifle world is your oyster.
Make a Cookie Cake at Home With This Easy Trick
Although many of us dream of being master cake decorators, you either have the talent or don't. But if you don't want to pay someone else to bake a cake for a special occasion, you'll be happy to know that you don't have to. Instead, you can either bake a cake yourself or buy one from the store, and while you're there, you'll want to buy some all-important cookies to decorate it with.
By adding cookies to a cake, you can instantly elevate the decoration. Plus, it will trick all of your party guests into thinking that you iced all of the cookies yourself.