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    23 Chefs Got Real About The "Cooking Hacks" They Hate, And It'll Make You Rethink Your Kitchen Strategies

    "Using a plastic water bottle to separate egg yolks. And by extension, using any tool to separate yolks. Just use your hands."

    As someone who's a major noob in the kitchen, I find it enjoyable to peruse the r/Cooking subreddit for tips and tricks on how to not totally screw up a meal.

    Recently, a thread by u/secret-snakes caught my eye. The user asked cooks to share the cooking "hacks" that they actually hate, and here are 23 that genuinely surprised me:

    1. "I hate saving veggie scraps for broth. I don't like the room it takes up in my freezer, and I don't think the broth tastes as good as it does when you use whole, fresh vegetables."

    pot full of veggies boiling

    2. "'Level-up your instant ramen' by cooking an entire fucking meal from scratch and then incorporating the noodles. This isn't a hack. This is just cooking."


    3. "I've tried loads for hummus that don't work: blend with ice, blend when chickpeas are hot, used dried/canned chickpeas, cook them more, take all the skins off, blend the tahini and lemon juice on their own first, soak with baking soda, etc. Just blend everything together, and make sure there's enough liquid in the blender that it blends properly to get it smooth. Then add salt until it tastes really good."


    4. "My pet peeve is the 'one sheet pan dinner' recipe videos, where they spread everything out on the pan, THEN add oil and seasonings AS UNEVENLY AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE and just shuffle everything around poorly with their hands. Please just toss it all in a big bowl beforehand, goddamn."

    pan sheet full of fish and veggies

    5. "Using a plastic water bottle to separate egg yolks. And by extension, using any tool to separate yolks. Just use your hands."


    6. "I saw one that made peanut butter sandwiches 'easier'. It involved creating frozen slices of peanut butter between two small sheets of cellophane, which could then be taken out of the freezer and put between bread, and would then melt creating a peanut butter sandwich. I have no idea how that was less time and effort than just making them the normal way, and it doesn't really extend the shelf life of peanut butter in any meaningful way, plus with the added drawback that you can't eat them right away since the peanut butter needs to melt. Blew my mind for all the wrong reasons."


    7. "Cooking things in the dishwasher. That started in the '70s. Now it's a TikTok thing, but it's always been stupid."

    foil-wrapped fish on the the dishwasher rack

    8. "Peeling garlic by shaking it in a container β€” it doesn't work for me."


    9. "Peeling ginger with a spoon. I just use a knife and square it off. I’m okay with losing a little bit of it if it means not grabbing a spoon and spending twice as much time prepping it."


    10. "Those TikTok morons who think cutting cake with a wineglass is somehow easier or convenient."

    hands dipping wine glasses into a cake to scoop up a slice

    11. "Putting olive oil in when the pasta is boiling so it doesn't stick. Give that pasta a stir when you put it in the pot and once every few minutes and save your olive oil for salad dressing. If you don't stir the pasta when you drop it in, no amount of olive oil will keep it from sticking anyway."


    12. "Any microwave plate or tray that is supposed to 'cook' an item better. Anyone remember the 'Bacon Wave' that came out in the '80s? It was a tray that was supposed to cook bacon crisp in the microwave and drain the fat at the same time. The problem was that it splattered grease all over your microwave and took about the same time as it does to pan-fry it. I've seen these for every type of egg dish, bacon, coffee, ramen noodles, steaks, and just about anything else. A pointless waste of money."


    13. "Breaking eggs with one hand. Get out of here with that black magic bullshit."

    hand cracking an egg against a pan

    14. "Making milk froth for coffee in an empty foaming hand soap bottle. Just BUY A MILK FROTHER 😭. They are like $10 at Target."


    15. "Defrosting in the microwave. It never does it evenly and the outer edges get 'cooked.' No thanks."


    16. "Microwave anything (mug cakes, etc). The texture is always way off."

    chocolate cakes in a mug

    17. "Putting cherry tomatoes between two plates to split them. Never works."


    18. "Pulling stems of cilantro through a hole (in a microplane, grater, colander, etc.) to get the leaves off has never worked for me. It's much faster for me to just pull the leaves off by hand."


    19. "I might be totally alone on this one, but I hate scissors for herbs or bacon or whatever. It’s so much more precise, quicker, and less messy to use a knife and chopping board."

    hands using scissors to cut up green onions

    20. "Using vinegar and milk as a substitute for buttermilk. Technically it adds some acid to the recipe just like buttermilk, but you lose out on the flavor and texture by a LOT."


    21. "Those jerks who put uncooked pasta into anything in those one pan casseroles. They just don't get the fact that there's starch that leaks out."


    22. "Cooking grilled cheese with mayonnaise instead of butter. It doesn't stick like butter does, so it's overall less effort/easier, but man β€” as someone who isn't big on mayo, it leaves a noticeable mayo aftertaste that sort of ruins it for me."

    mayo on bread

    23. And finally, "All the cuts in an onion. You don't need the horizontal ones, and not doing so makes the onion more stable/easier to cut. Just cut it thinner and do long cuts if you need."


    Some submissions have been edited for length/clarity.