Food Prep Russell's Pro Tips

Our 10 Best Cooking Tips

We know there are a lot of tips out there for being a better cook. You have a few that you live by, that perhaps were passed down from your mother or grandmother. We asked around our team to collect some favorite cooking tips and wanted to share them with you.

mother and daughter preparing dough and pouring milk into bowl

1. Take notes. Write in your cookbook. Add a post-it note. That way, the next time you make that recipe, you’ll remember how you personalized it (or what you would have done differently).

2. Store lemons in the refrigerator. They’ll keep longer, and you’ll always have access to fresh lemon juice for recipes. You can also use the squeezed rinds to clean your wooden cutting boards.

3. Take care of your knives. Learn the difference between your knives and how to use them. Don’t put them in the dishwasher, and store them in a block or on a magnet to keep them sharp and at the ready.

Cutting onions

4. Taste as you go. When you taste while you cook, you’ll realize sooner that your dish needs a little extra flavor or seasoning, and you won’t be disappointed at the table. If you wait until the end, it may be too late.

5. Set your timer for a few minutes less. All ovens cook differently. It’s better to put your dish back in to cook a bit longer than to realize you’ve over-cooked.

6. Cook extra grains and rice. You’ll be thankful for the leftovers in the fridge on those nights you’re too tired to cook, or don’t have the extra time to make more to go with your meal.

Cooked Brown Rice

7. Check your ground spices. If they don’t smell like anything, go ahead and throw them out. They probably won’t taste like anything, either.

8. Make your own salad dressings. You probably have everything you need in your pantry. It’s easy and healthy, plus you can customize to your preferences and what you have on hand. 

homemade salad dressings in mason jars

9. Keep a supply of mason jars. The wide-mouth jars are versatile, we use them for everything. Freezing soups and broths (make sure to leave about an inch at the top for expansion), food storage, mixing, and cold drinks.

10. Invest in extra freezer space.
 Stock up on fresh summer fruits and veggies at the Farmer’s Market and freeze them. Enjoy peaches, berries, and more throughout the year.