Total Nutrition Technology
Monday, June 2, 2014

Having some tips that make kitchen time a little easier and faster can make all the difference when you are trying to get a meal on the table for your family.  So we have compiled some of our favorite healthy kitchen shortcuts that will help make you more efficient, and help you spend less time in the kitchen.

1. Slice a bunch of cherry tomatoes at once.  When you have to slice a lot of something little, it can be kind of tedious.  This method of cutting cherry tomatoes takes minimal time and effort and I bet you already have what you need in your kitchen.  Thanks The Kitchn for sharing this time saver!  

2. Freeze chicken stock.  Did you know that the standard muffin tin measures about 1/2 cup?  It's the perfect vessel to use to freeze liquid.  So next time you make some homemade chicken stock or have left over drippings from the Thanksgiving turkey pour that stock in a muffin tin and pop it in the freezer for future use! Thanks Martha Stewart for the kitchen time-saver!

3. Peel garlic fast and easy.  Peeling a ton of garlic for a recipe can be a tedious job.  So next time try this fast and easy trick from Real Simple.  All you need is 2 stainless steel bowls and a little muscle.  We even included a great video to show you how easy this is!

4. Soften butter quickly.  If your anything like me you'll be in the middle of a recipe and realize you forgot to take out the butter to soften.  Well next time try this handy tip from Lil Luna.  Simply cut your butter into small chucks and spread out on a plate.  It will soften in no time and you'll be right back to baking or cooking!

5. Use a melon baller to de-seed.  The handy melon baller isn't just for making pretty fruit salads.  It's a great tool to use to scrape seeds out of fruits and veggies.  It works great on peppers, cucumbers, strawberries, pears, zucchini and so much more!  Thanks Marin Mamma Cooks for sharing this great tip.

6. Use homemade mixes.  Making a large batch of homemade pancake mix can be a huge time saver in the mornings.  We love this recipe from Homemaker's Challenge.  Check out her addition of ground flax seed.  And don't be afraid to mix up the flours a bit and substitute with some or all whole wheat flour.  Homemade mixes are a great way to still put a hot breakfast on the table on busy mornings.

7. Freeze soft cheese for easier grating.  Sometimes grating a soft cheese like fresh mozzarella can leave you with nothing but frustration and small chucks of cheese!  Next time, place the soft cheese in the freezer for 20-30 minutes to harden and grating will be a breeze.

8. DIY Frozen Smoothie Packets.  Starting off the day with a healthy breakfast is so important.  Making frozen smoothie packets ahead of time is a great time saver...just pour, blend and drink!  We love these recipe combos from All Things Katie Marie.  

9. Cut and peel kiwi the easy way.  Did you know that a kiwi contains a large amount of vitamin C, even more than an orange! That's just one of the reasons we love them!  Here is a nifty tip from Steamy Kitchen on the easiest way to cut and eat your next kiwi.

10. The easiest way to freeze ground meat.  Here is a great healthy kitchen shortcut from Real Simple.  This works great for all ground meats: lean beef, turkey, chicken and pork.  Simply fill a zip lock back with ground meat, flatten and using a wooden skewer or chop stick section into a tic-tac-toe grid.  Then next time you need some ground meat break a piece off.  This method also helps meat thaw faster AND is a great way to proportion burgers for your next cookout!

What is your favorite healthy kitchen shortcut?

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