Tips on How to Save Time in the Kitchen

save time in the kitchen

For those who enjoy cooking, saving time in the kitchen brings excellent advantages. If you want to save time in the kitchen, you need to have a proper plan. As the saying goes, proper preparation prevents poor performance. The problem with planning is that it is often easier said than done. The last thing we need is spending countless hours in the kitchen. Get tips on how to save time in the kitchen below.

Planning ahead

A quick time-waster is going to prepare tea and finding out you have run out of sugar. Time taken to go to the store and work out what to cook is enormous. A great solution is to plan. Have a meal plan; know what you are going to cook upfront. It gives you the time to sort out what you need. Use your meal plan to shop for what you need for every meal. With a detailed plan, you are less likely to forget something crucial.

Take an inventory of what you have in the fridge and plan the meals you will have for the week. Make a list and go to the store as this will eliminate the “What’s for dinner” quandary. It will also help you save cash as you will plan your meals on ingredients you already have. Make sure to consider what is available for in-season produce and meats. Why not use Google to get some recipes? Post your meal plan for the week and ensure you stick to it.

Wash organic fruits and vegetables before putting them away

Everyone loves to buy organic, but it doesn’t fit every budget. Wash organic fruits and vegetables before consuming them. Why? They tend to be handled by various workers and are grown using fertilizers and soil enhancers.

As such, to clean them as thoroughly as possible, fill a sink halfway with cold water and add a cup of cider or white vinegar. Add one tablespoon of baking soda and juice of half a lemon. Note the mixture will fizz-up, so you shouldn’t be alarmed.

Place all of your organic fruits and vegetables in the solution and let them sit for about eight minutes. Make sure to bobble and turn each piece to fully cover all surfaces. You can scrub the skins of root veggies with a brush to save time. The next step is to rinse and dry leafy greens in a salad spinner. You can air-dry the rest of your organic fruits and vegetables on a tea towel before storing them. Now you have clean and organic produce ready to be cooked.

Have a cleaned and well-organized cooking area

Getting organized is a clear way of saving time. It saves more time than any other tip you might be given. Make sure you have decluttered as much as you can by getting the right storage and systems ready. Store your kitchen artillery such as cups, cutlery, and plates close to the dishwasher as possible. It will save enough time when it comes to putting them away. Keep items you are most likely to use as near as possible. Put less used items further away.

If you have kids, place kitchen appliances at their level so they can be able to help themselves. It will help them get breakfast and drinks sorted out. When storing foods, make sure you use the right containers. It will help you spend less time closing and opening ill-fitting lids. Some necessary organizational skills will pay good dividends if used the right way. Arrange your cupboards for convenience, as you’ll want a practical arrangement to save time.

well-organized cooking area

Time yourself

Have you ever found yourself standing by a saucepan of water and waiting for it to boil? It is easy to find yourself in such positions, especially if distracted by other chores. Make sure you learn how much it takes for such things to boil and cook. You don’t have to hover knowing how much time it takes to cook perfect pasta. Why not go and have other things after setting a timer for each meal?

You should know meals which get cooked under 30 minutes. They include mushroom fajitas, calamari salad, shrimp tacos, pasta with cream sauce, and others. Meals that take time to prepare but pay high dividends include meatloaf, manicotti, peanut butter granola bars, and more. You can save time in the future with these meals as they are eaten for many meals. Once you know the duration taken to cook an individual meal, you can easily save time.

Delegate to save time

Using delegation can really save time spent in the kitchen. You can get help from your loved ones to cook. Most family members can help to save time by applying their kitchen prowess. In other words, kitchen duties can be shared among the family, often so that time can be spent with the kids. If they’re old enough to prepare meals, they can help minimize time spent in the kitchen even further and time can be shared doing other things together.

Nothing feels better than getting some family and friends help in the kitchen. These people will be learning something new as well as sharing some memorable experiences. If you are cooking with kids around, make sure there is only one knife out. You should know where the blade is at all times.

Tasks to delegate include chopping vegetables and tearing lettuce. If you are preparing a meal for a large crowd, make sure to pair people up for a variety of tasks.

You should use food shortcuts

Using shortcuts from time to time is a time saver. You can buy pizzas for your family and add whatever toppings you have. Having readymade sources are great to have just in case you decided to order in. Make sure you don’t use recipes that will prompt you to think. Using tried and tested methods will ensure you save time. A right way of saving time is by using frozen vegetables.

Part-baked bread in the freezer can help you prepare a quick soup. Having bags of salad and premade foods can help you save time. Some veggies which can be reliably frozen well include broccoli, corn, peas, spinach, and soybeans.

Make sure you shift your mindset, plan and prepare and be ready to cook with less time.

Resources –  Foodal, Cook Smarts, EatingWell, Shape

Lija is a Blogger and Staff Writer for Bizmaa focusing on business analytics, business systems, gadgets and other small business news. She has a background in information and communications technology coordination.