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7 Subtle Cooking Mistakes To Avoid For More Delicious Dishes

Cooking Mistakes To Avoid

Unless you’re a trained chef or a culinary school graduate, no one expects you to be an expert in all things related to cooking. But that being said, there are certain cooking mistakes you should know to avoid, if only because those mistakes can have a negative impact on the taste and quality of your food!

In this post, I’ll pick up where this post left off by sharing a fresh batch of 7 cooking mistakes to avoid while you’re in the kitchen. Making these simple tweaks to your dinnertime routine will go a long way toward ensuring your cooking is as delicious as possible!

7 (More) Cooking Mistakes That Are Ruining Your Food

ruining food

1. You Keep Opening The Oven Door

It’s good to keep an eye on your food as it cooks, but you shouldn’t open the oven door every time you do it! Every time you open the door of a hot oven, the temperature will drop considerably and slow down the cooking process. Those fluctuations can also create hot or cold spots and cause food to cook unevenly.

If you want to check on your food, turn on the oven light and look through the door. If you must open the oven door, do it infrequently and quickly to minimize heat loss.

ruining food

2. You Use A Dull Knife

As backward as it might sound, using a dull knife in the kitchen can actually be more dangerous than using a sharp one. That’s because you need to use more force to cut through something with a dull knife, and that extra force can cause your knife, cutting board, or the food itself to slip, resulting in injury.

But with a sharp knife, the weight of the blade does most of the work, and cuts are easier and look cleaner. Run your knives through decent knife sharpener as needed, or take them into a local knife shop to have them professionally sharpened. (Most shops charge about $1 per inch, so it’s far from expensive!)

Related: 7 Ways You’re Ruining The Most Important Thing In Your Kitchen

ruining food

3. You Don’t Store Ingredients Correctly

Using fresh ingredients in your cooking won’t necessarily guarantee a delicious dish, but it certainly helps! And storing your ingredients the right way will help keep them tasting fresh for as long as possible. Get dozens of useful tips for keeping your food fresh at the link below!

Related: 36 Easy Tips That Will Keep Your Food Fresh And Save You Money

ruining food

4. You Don’t Taste As You Go

Even when you’re following a recipe, it’s important to taste what you’re cooking as you go! Tasting at every step gives you the opportunity to make adjustments as you go to fine-tune seasonings, moisture levels, and other elements as needed. (It also eliminates the possibility of being shocked by how your dish tastes once it’s done!)

ruining food

5. Your Appliances And Cookware Are Dirty

Cooking with dirty tools and appliances can affect the taste of your food. Make sure you are scouring any burnt food off of your pots and pans, and keep your cooking appliances free of burnt food and grease splatters.

And don’t forget to descale your coffee maker regularly! Mineral buildup in your machine can quickly foul the flavor of your morning cup of coffee. To learn about more ways that cleaning affects the taste of your food, check out my post at the link below.

Related: These 9 Cleaning Mistakes Can Make Your Food Taste Bad

ruining food

6. You Misread Recipes

Make sure to read your recipes closely, and pay special attention to the wording of each ingredient! For instance, if a recipe calls for “1 cup walnuts, chopped,” that indicates you should measure out the walnuts before chopping them. If it calls for “1 cup chopped walnuts,” that means you should chop the walnuts first, then measure them.

It may be a subtle difference in certain cases, but in others, it could alter the flavor of your recipe in unexpected (and possibly unfortunate) ways!

Related: Should You Rinse Your Rice? (It Actually Makes A Difference)

ruining food

7. You Use The Same Oil For Everything

Some cooking oils are better suited to certain recipes than others. For instance, avocado oil has a high smoke point, so it’s a good choice for stir-frying and other high-heat methods. If you were to use an oil with a low smoke point (such as extra virgin olive oil) to cook something over high heat, it could easily cause the oil to burn and make your whole dish taste scorched.

It’s worth taking some time to learn which oil to use when in order to avoid these kinds of oil mishaps. I recommend checking out this helpful article from Bon Appetit that explains the various types of cooking oils and the best uses for them!

Do you have a favorite tip you use when cooking?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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Food & Recipes

  • I misread a stir fry recipe and added 1/4 C ginger into the sauce instead of 1/4 t. It was hideous and did not use ginger for 20 years or so. I can still taste it now. Yikes!

  • Thank you for the clarification on 1 cup walnuts “chopped”, versus 1 cup Chopped Walnuts. Wow. I also did not know about the oil burn point.

  • No. 6. I was never told that. I always thought it was just how the author of the recipe worded it. Though if you stop and think about it, the wording makes sense.

      • I’ve heard that before. I am a cook in a large institutional kitchen and have learned lots of things over the years, that being one of them.

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