My Favorite Kitchen Tricks

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Preparing healthy meals at home can be a little overwhelming at times, but the more often you do it, the more you learn little tricks along the way. Shaving off a few minutes from your prep time here and there will help you spend a little less time in the kitchen and enjoy your meals even faster!

The following tricks help me on a regular basis in my kitchen, so I hope they’ll help you, too.

1. Use a microplane to mince your garlic and ginger.

mincing garlic with a microplane

Simply run a garlic clove back and forth over a microplane for a quick and even minced texture. I use this trick all the time for adding garlic directly into soups, sauces, and salads. If your minced garlic sticks to the back of the microplane, just tap the microplane on a hard surface to remove it.

2. Use a splash of water to prevent sticking.

pouring water in a pot

Rather than adding more butter or oil to your pan, simply add a splash of water to your pan while cooking is in progress. This easy trick will quickly un-stick any vegetables that are starting to brown and stick to the bottom of your pans!

3. Use a spoon to remove the seeds and white pith from bell peppers.

remove pepper pith with a spoon

A friend of mine just taught me this little trick and it works so well! Rather than trying to maneuver a knife into each nook and cranny of a bell pepper, just use a spoon to swipe out the pith and seeds. It’s not only safer, but much more effective!

4. Cut vegetables into strips first, then chop.

cutting carrots

I used to always cut vegetables into coins first, then chop them into smaller pieces, but that makes for a slow chopping process. It’s much faster to slice vegetables into narrow strips first, so that you can chop them down into small, even-sized pieces all at once!

5. Freeze sauces in ice cube trays.

freezing pesto in ice cube trays

When I’m whipping up a pasta sauce, I always like to make a double batch and freeze the extra in ice cube trays. These sauce cubes can be easily portioned and thawed for a quick meal in the future, whether you’re cooking for one or more!

6. Chop or shred your salad vegetables ahead of time.

shredded carrots in a small glass

If you have some free time over the weekend, take a few minutes to shred or chop some vegetables and store them in sealed glass jars in the fridge. You’ll essentially create your own “salad bar” in the fridge, making salads easy to assemble all week long! I love using my salad shooter for shredding raw carrots, beets, zucchini, and cucumbers quickly.

Reader Feedback: What are your favorite time-saving kitchen tricks? Please share them in the comments below!

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Comments

Debra

I make a mixture of Onions, Garlic & Cilantro – maybe a little olive oil – pop it into the food processor and grind to a fine pulp. I then freeze it in a pan to cut into squares after freezing and then place squares in freezer bag. I use this for a base for soups, rice (when I used to eat it), and many other dishes that cal for garlic & onions. You can always omit the cilantro and just do garlic & onions.

sue

great tips! some seem so simple, it makes me wonder why i never thought about them lol

Max

Thanks for the helpful post! I’d like to ask, which pasta sauce is the green sauce in the ice cube trays in your pictures?

Jill

I wonder if any nutritional content is lost when pre chopping vegetables a day or more ahead?

Laura

Like Jill, I worry about about lost nutritional content when cutting up fruits and veggies ahead of time, but I still do it because eating at home (no matter what) is still better than eating out. I just read that when you eat at home, regardless of what food you choose, you almost automatically save yourself 200 calories per meal, every time! That’s astounding.

My best tip is nothing fancy, but I do all my prep work for things like onions, red peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, carrots, parsnips, squash, broccoli on Sunday, keep everything is airtight containers at the back of my fridge and pull them out for omelets in the morning, fresh veggies at lunch and quasdillas for dinner. I also make a huge fruit salad on Sunday and we enjoy it for 3 or 4 days thereafter. So at least the knives, cutting board and kitchen area gets cleaned up after that mess and it helps me keep the kitchen cleaner the rest of the week.

Berneda

Thank you so much for your tips and recipes. I have made so much of your recipes and every tip helps. I really love your no-flour PB cookies!!

Kate

Your website was the first one I perused when I decided to take a healthier path with food. I have learned so very much, from big to small things, all well-explained and new user-friendly…thank you so much for all your hard work and sharing! My healthy heroine..lol you rock!

Hope

Love all these ideas! Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

GiGi Eats

OMG that garlic mincing trick – will solve ALLLLLL my problems when I go home to visit my dad and he asks me to mince garlic! LOL!

Alyssa

It didn’t even cross my mind to use a microplane for garlic! I tried that tonight and you’re right, it’s awesome! I’m now inspired to add even more garlic to my meals.

Marguerite

I loved the idea of chopping all the vegetables in advance for salads and storing all the ingredients in glass jars in the refrigerator. Having it done in advance will give us more incentive to eat salad. Sometimes the thought of cutting everything up puts me off and on to something else maybe not as healthy. Thanks!

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