food ingredients on a wooden table

15 food hacks to save time in the kitchen

From the secret tricks of Britain’s best chefs to the tried and tested methods of clever home cooks - the best food hacks to try tonight.

By Tiffany Loh, 01 August 2016
15 food hacks to save time in the kitchen

Would you like to have a few food hacks up your sleeve to save time in the kitchen? To make your food preparation as stress-free as possible, we’ve put together a list of food hacks to help cut down on the time you spend chopping, peeling and slicing.

These food hacks are all you need to free up your time in the evenings and at weekends

From an amazing trick that separates egg yolks from whites to the best way to skin potatoes, these food hacks are all you need to free up your time in the evenings and at weekends.

Get your cheese grater cleaner than ever with a pastry brush

From parmesan to ginger or garlic, getting your grater squeaky clean can be tricky. Unless, you use a pastry brush. More effective when dry, simply use the brush to dust foodie bits out of even the tiniest holes, for a grater that’s clean and fresh.

Fish out broken eggshells with… an eggshell

Never cook bits of broken eggshell again. The eggshell itself will act as a magnet to attract even the tiniest pieces, so you can ladle them out, while keeping waste and mess to a minimum.

Deseed vegetables with an ice cream scoop

To remove seeds from vegetables with ease, use an ice cream scoop. The edge comes to a point, which makes cutting through fibres easier than it is with a standard spoon.

Use a can opener to lever stubborn jar lids

You don’t need the Hulk’s muscles to open the pesto jar anymore. Use a can opener to lift the lid until you hear a pop, then unscrew as normal.

Separate egg yolks from whites with a plastic bottle

Take the lid off a plastic bottle and gently squeeze it over cracked eggs. When the bottle reinflates it will suction the yolk right up. This has to be seen to be believed!

Cut cakes with dental floss

If you have trouble sectioning your cakes into even portions, then unflavoured dental floss is a great way to control what you’re cutting. It works beautifully on soft cheeses, too.

Peel skin off ginger with a spoon

Remove the papery skin of a ginger root by peeling it with the side of a spoon. It doesn’t cut as deep as a normal peeler, meaning there’s more ginger to go around.

Peel garlic with the side of a chef’s knife

Crush the garlic with the side of a chef’s knife and the skin will fall right off the clove. Plus, crushing the garlic will also release delicious juices. Yum!

Boil eggs with vinegar for quick peeling

Add vinegar to water in a pan when boiling your eggs to separate the white from its shell. This will make it quick and easy to peel.

Coat measuring cups with oil for zero stick

Spray or rub a light layer of oil on measuring cups and spoons to make sure any sticky liquids like honey or molasses slide straight off into your bowls. It will also make washing up a dream!

Peel potatoes with water

Don’t have a peeler? No worries. Boil your potatoes, then give them an ice bath. The skin will soften and separate from the potato so it slides right off. It’s almost too easy – not that we’re complaining. 

Stop chopping boards from slipping with wet kitchen roll

A slippery chopping board can cause unnecessary nicks and cuts to the fingers. Stay safe by laying a few wet sheets of kitchen roll underneath to help anchor your board.  

Wrap citrus fruits in cheesecloth to stop pips from falling into your food

If you don’t want to have to fish annoying seeds out of your salad, then wrap lemon or lime in cheesecloth before squeezing it over your food. This acts as a barrier to catch seeds, but still lets the juice to flow through.

Remove pomegranate seeds with a wooden spoon

Some people swear by submerging pomegranate seeds in water before removing the seeds, but if you don’t want red-stained fingers then this the method for you: Cut your pomegranate in half, then hold it over a bowl and give it a hard hit with a wooden spoon so the seeds fall into the bowl.

Halve cherry tomatoes in one swift action

Save yourself a whole lot of time and effort with this speedy trick. Sandwich your cherry tomatoes in between two flat surfaces – container lids or plates work best – and press down on them while you slice through the middles of the tomatoes, easy!