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Revolutionize Your Kitchen Routine: 15 Time-Saving Cooking Hacks for Busy Weeknight Dinners

Ever feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day? With work, errands, and family duties, cooking an elaborate dinner can seem like a Herculean task. Luckily, there are plenty of clever cooking hacks to help you whip up delicious meals in no time. Let’s dive into 15 such time-saving techniques.

1. Meal Planning: Save time and reduce stress by planning your meals for the week. Having a set menu prevents the last-minute rush to figure out what to cook.

2. Prep Ingredients in Advance: Chop vegetables, marinate proteins, and measure out spices ahead of time. Store them in the fridge until ready to use.

3. Use Frozen Vegetables: Frozen veggies are picked at peak freshness and save you the trouble of washing and chopping.

4. Batch Cooking: Cook in large quantities and freeze in meal-sized portions. This way, you’ll have home-cooked meals ready in a jiffy.

5. Utilize Your Slow Cooker or Instant Pot: These devices can significantly cut down on active cooking time, allowing you to “set it and forget it”.

6. Sheet Pan Meals: Roast your proteins and veggies all on one pan to save on clean-up time.

7. Use Pre-Cooked Grains: Ready-made grains like quinoa or brown rice can cut down on cooking time.

8. One-Pot Dishes: Opt for meals that can be made entirely in one pot to save on washing up.

9. Make Extra: Whenever you cook, consider making extra. Leftovers can be repurposed for another meal.

10. Use a Microplane: This tool can quickly zest citrus, grate cheese, or mince garlic and ginger.

11. Pre-Made Sauces and Dressings: Keep a selection of your favorite pre-made sauces and dressings on hand to quickly add flavor to dishes.

12. Cook Pasta in the Sauce: Instead of cooking pasta separately, try cooking it directly in your sauce. This not only saves time but also results in more flavorful pasta.

13. Clean as You Go: Avoid a mountain of dishes by cleaning up as you cook.

14. Use a Rice Cooker: This appliance isn’t just for rice! You can also steam vegetables or cook quinoa, freeing up your stovetop for other tasks.

15. Double-Duty Appliances: Use appliances that have multiple functions, like a blender that also acts as a food processor.

Remember, cooking should be an enjoyable experience, not a chore. With these time-saving hacks, you’ll be a whizz in the kitchen, making weeknight dinners a breeze.

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