18 Genius Cooking Hacks, Charts, and Tips For Back-To-School

September 3, 2018
by Jacqueline Parisi Tips and Tricks

    Teachers tell you not to take shortcuts, but once you step inside the kitchen with HelloFresh this back-to-school season, YOU are the one in charge… and YOU make the rules. So feel free to embrace alllll the cooking hacks with the help of this handy guide — from conversions and measurements to time-savers, storing, and clean up. If we were you, we’d bookmark this gem stat. 

    Conversions and Measurements

    1. Grain-to-Water Ratios

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-grain-water-ratio

    Always wasting time Googling the grain-to-water ratios? We’ve got you covered.

    1 Cup Brown Rice

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       2 Cups Water

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       30 Minutes

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    1 Cup Basmati Rice

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       2 Cups Water

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       20-25 Minutes

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    1 Cup Quinoa

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       1 1/4 Cups Water

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       20 Minutes

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    1 Cup Farro

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       4 Cups Water

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       25 Minutes

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    1 Cup Rolled Oats   2 Cups Water   15 Minutes

    2. Measurement Conversions

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-kitchen-conversions-chart

    Don’t have time to whip out your calculator? Say no more.

    3 Teaspoons

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          1 Tablespoon

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    2 Tablespoons

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          1 Ounce

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    4 Tablespoons[separator type=”thin”]      1/4 Cup[separator type=”thin”]
    1 Cup[separator type=”thin”]      8 Fluid Ounces[separator type=”thin”]
    2 Cups[separator type=”thin”]      1 Pint[separator type=”thin”]
    2 Pints[separator type=”thin”]      1 Quart[separator type=”thin”]
    4 Quarts      1 Gallon

    3. Meat Temperatures

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-meat-thermometer

    Unsure if your steak is done? Invest in a meat thermometer and your days of poking and prodding will be over. A list of cooking hacks just isn’t complete without this one.


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    Medium Rare[separator type=”thin”]        130°F[separator type=”thin”]
    Medium[separator type=”thin”]        140°F[separator type=”thin”]
    Medium Well[separator type=”thin”]        150°F[separator type=”thin”]
    Well        165°F


    4. Bread looking “meh” but don’t have time to run to the store? Run it under a bit of water and put in the oven 5-10 minutes for fresh, crunchy, just-baked flavor.

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-bread-fresh

    5. Don’t have time to wait for your avocado to ripen? Wrapping it up tight in aluminum foil and popping it in the oven at 200ºF for 10(ish) minutes will do the trick.

    6. Don’t have time to wait for meatloaf to cook? Divide meat into individual portions in a muffin tin and bake at 450ºF 15-20 minutes.

    7. Finding yourself in a sticky situation every time you try and measure honey? Coat your utensil with a small amount of cooking oil first.

    8. Want a cold glass of cab, quick? Wrap a wet dish towel around your wine bottle, place it in the freezer and remove it after about 15 minutes.

    Storage Tips And Tricks

    9. Need to keep your lunch cool, but don’t wanna buy an ice pack? Make your own by soaking a sponge in water and then freezing it in a zip-top bag.

    10. Store tomatoes stem end down to prevent air from entering and moisture from exiting the spot where the tomato was once attached to the vine.

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-storing

    11. Dos and Don’ts of Freezing Veggiescooking hacks-HelloFresh-freezing-veggies

    Stuck with more produce than you can eat? Freeze it (but not everything)!

       DO FREEZE      DON’T FREEZE   
    Avocado FleshCucumbers
    Kale Peppers
    Tomatoes Radishes

    Clean Up

    You really can’t have cooking hacks without some clean up tips.

    cooking hacks-HelloFresh-clean up

    12. Wooden cutting board looking worn down and smelling, ahem, interesting? Scrub with half a lemon and a generous amount of coarse salt.

    13. Not a fan of expensive, store-bought cleaners? Make your own by combining 1 cup white vinegar, 1 cup distilled water and 3 drops each orange, grapefruit, and lemon essential oil.

    14. Can’t get the stale air out of your kitchen? Make your own air freshener by combining 2 cups distilled water, 1 tablespoon baking soda, 7 drops lavender essential oil, and 3 drops lemon essential oil.

    15. Stuck with dirty sponges? Zap ’em in a microwave for two minutes to kill the germs.

    16. That microwave looking messy? Nuke a bowl of water with squeezed lemon juice and the rind for 3 minutes, and let it stand for 5 more to let steam loosen the gunk. Then just use a clean towel to wipe it sparkly clean.

    17. Struggling to get your coffee grinder spick and span? Toss a few chunks of stale bread and pulse. The stuck-on grinds will stick to the bread like a magnet.

    18. Always stuck struggling with plastic wrap? Store it in the fridge instead — the chilled plastic wrap is infinitely easier to handle.

    Keep up the love for cooking hacks with these 6 Ingenious Kitchen Hacks To Save You Time.

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    1 comment

    Scott Cooney says:

    I love Tacos
    So send taco kit next time would be great ..

    Amanda says:

    We’ll be sure to share your love for Tacos with our team Scott!