KITCHEN HACKS TO SAVE MONEY & TIME
Kitchen Hack #1
Store tomatoes with the stems facing down to keep them from spoiling as fast. They’re also better at room temperature rather than in the refrigerator – so leave them stem down on the counter-top for a longer life.
Kitchen Hack #2
Instead of flipping your veggies half-way through roasting, leave the baking sheet in the oven while it’s preheating. This preheats the pan as well, so when you add your veggies they will cook on both sides more evenly and quickly.
Kitchen Hack #3
Have you ever stuck your hand in the silverware drawer and gotten an unexpected poke from a knife? Take those old wine corks and place one on the top of each knife while they’re being stored to keep your hands protected. Or get a Bamboo Knife Dock.
Kitchen Hack #4
Keep bananas from spoiling too fast by wrapping the end of the bunch with plastic wrap. Even better, separate the bananas and wrap each stem to make them last even longer.
Kitchen Hack #5
Have you ever wondered how you could tell if an egg has spoiled? Try this – put an uncooked egg in a bowl of cold water – if it sinks, it’s still good, if it floats, toss it.
Kitchen Hack #6
Speed up your herb chopping process with a pizza cutter! Get your herb bunch ready on the cutting board and roll a pizza cutter in different directions. This chops herbs thoroughly.
Kitchen Hack #7
Apple slicers certainly make apple cutting a breeze, but have you ever thought to use it for potatoes, as well? Use your apple slicer to get white or sweet potatoes into long chunks. You can have fresh, homemade sweet potato fries cut perfectly within minutes!
Grocery Store Tips
If you’re heading to the supermarket with a half-baked plan of what you need -- don’t. Doing this is the perfect storm for a grocery cart full of unnecessary items, and a receipt a mile long. Before you go – make up a menu for the week and then create your shopping list from what you need on your menu! Trust me – you’ll spend less time and money at the store.
When creating your weekly menu – think about large meals you can make that you can later eat for a few days (dinner one night, lunch two days later, etc.). It might seem like a chore at first, but it pays off big in saving both time and money. When you prep your meals, you free up a LOT of time you’d spend scurrying around during the week.
No more running late. No more being too tired to cook something delicious and nutritious. Plus, you’re less likely to waste food when you have everything organized and ready to go.
Spending little time up front planning and organizing will give you back more time later to enjoy for yourself. Take a look at your kitchen. Are the cabinets messy? Are the pots and pans here and there? Do you know where everything is? Do you have things you never use? Organize everything so that it’s easy to find. You’ll never waste time in the kitchen again when you do!
More Grocery Store Tips
Have you heard this – Shop the Perimeter? This means, when you’re in the supermarket stay away from the center aisles whenever possible.
All supermarkets follow the same basic layout. Around the perimeter, you’ll see fresh foods like produce, seafood, eggs, meats and dairy. The good stuff! The internal aisles display those colorful shelf-stable pre-packaged food-like-items. Keep to your list when you need to go into the interior, items such as dried beans or rice. This way you won’t cave and wind up with a cart full of cookies and chips!
Here’s another tip. Choose fruits and vegetables that are in season. They will be fresher, priced lower, more abundant, and taste better! Here is where you can be flexible in your meal planning and swap out one vegetable for another, focusing on what’s in season.
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Jennifer Castro is a Health Educator & Patient Advocate who specializes in Women's Health & Vestibular Disorders. Coach Jenny is working towards becoming Board Certified while working as an Instructional Team Member for the College of Health Solutions at ASU. She also works as an Insurance Broker providing insurance solutions for small business & office settings, employee benefits and workplace wellness options