Foolproof Tips for Beginner Cooks to Get Started in the Kitchen

When venturing into cooking at home, we all commence from varying points. Presently, for numerous individuals, their culinary journey might culminate in the simplicity of fixing a bowl of instant ramen noodles. 

However, this doesn’t have to mark the limit of one’s culinary abilities. Mastering the art of cooking is a valuable skill with multifaceted advantages. Firstly, it presents significant savings in terms of finances. An article on CNET showed the crazy margins you can avoid. 

Take a simple chicken sandwich. If you have it delivered to you, it adds up to a whopping $11.32 on average. In comparison, you can make the same sandwich for only $2.78 at home. 

Learning to cook also impresses your friends and family with your meals’ deliciousness. Thus, in this article, let us look at some of the must-know tips before you put on that chef’s hat. 

1. Safety First!

One reason why some individuals hesitate to begin cooking at home is due to their fear of the process. It’s understandable since cooking entails handling sharp objects and dealing with hot liquids.

Yes, it is true that you can definitely hurt yourself if you aren’t careful. Dealing with knives, hot oil, and electric appliances will take some practice and getting used to. Thankfully, there are many online tutorials from expert cooks and chefs that you can watch to learn good safety habits. 

Of course, you also want to purchase quality utensils and kitchen appliances. Sometimes, the safety risk doesn’t come from anything you do, but from poor equipment. Just look at the news reports on how manufacturing defects can cause an Instant Pot to explode. According to TorHoerman Law, such explosions have caused severe burns, cuts, bruises, and even injuries to your eyes. 

Let this not scare you away from cooking, though. It’s just worth highlighting the importance of safety before you start exploring your kitchen. 

2. Get Your Basics in Order

The beauty of cooking is that, just like an onion, there are several layers to mastering it. You aren’t going to be making complex three-course meals when you just start out. Instead, you start out focusing on mastering certain core skills that will be your foundation. 

These skills will often be used across multiple recipes, so it’s important to focus on them early on. 

Since we mentioned onions above, let’s start with that. A good cook needs to know how to chop onions the right way. After all, it’s a vegetable that you will be using over and over again. 

Similarly, salting by hand is going to be something you learn from experience. Sure, you can always rely on a measuring spoon, but the better you get at cooking, the more you want to rely on your ability to eyeball and measure out salt.

There are several core skills like this that you want to pay attention to. Learning how to sear, being able to check if meat has cooked (with and without a thermometer), and kneading dough are all important skills.

Master them, and you won’t regret it. 

3. Build Your Custom Cookbook 

If you have made it so far, congratulations! You must now be quite familiar with working in a kitchen. It’s at this point that beginner cooks start to explore new recipes and push their skills. 

While you definitely want to do this, it’s easy to lose track of things. This is why it’s worth developing your own list of tried-and-true recipes. You will be surprised at the way you blank out when you suddenly need to prepare something for guests. In such situations, it helps to have a custom list of recipes that you have mastered.

Ensure that when you write these recipes, you add custom tips and tricks that you found useful. These could be substitute ingredients, alternate portion amounts, etc.

There are also cookbook apps and programs that can be of great help.

Some also have features that automatically adjust ingredient quantities when you increase or decrease servings. Don’t forget to take advantage of such tools in your cooking journey! 

In conclusion, the decision to start cooking at home is one that you will not regret. In addition to the obvious benefits, like the money you save or the more healthy meals you eat, it is also extremely rewarding. 

That’s right, a lot of people realize that cooking can be an almost meditative and enjoyable experience. It can be a great, new hobby that you spend hundreds of hours on!