5 Common Cooking Mistakes You’re Definitely Making

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Image: Buzzfeed

Whether you’re a novice cook or an experienced cook, you’re bound to make some of these common mistakes (confession: I make most of these mistakes regularly). However, making small changes in the way you cook can significantly improve your results or even save you from potential disasters

Overcrowding the pan


One-pan dinners are great for convenience but covering the entire pan might cause your food to not cook the way you want it to. Filling up your entire pan’s surface traps the heat, causing it to create steam. When steam is present, your food, especially meats, isn’t able to brown properly, which is essential for sealing in the moisture and keeping your food juicy.

General rule of thumb: Leaving enough room to prevent the food from touching or cooking in smaller batches

Using the same oil for EVERYTHING

Image: Olive Oil Voice

I use my Extra Virgin Olive Oil for everything from frying to dressing salads but it actually doesn’t perform well for cooking with high heat. EVOO has a low smoking point, which means it starts to burn at fairly low temperatures, and possibly catch on fire. If you’re searing any type of meat, roasting things in the oven, deep frying some fries, use canola oil instead if you don’t any burn oils.

Cold food in hot pan

Image: Youtube - PopInvasion  

If you’re finding difficulty in cooking your meats evenly, this might be why. Transferring cold meat from the fridge straight to the pan can cause the outside to be overdone before the inside is even ready. Let your meat sit for up to 30 minutes while it warms up to room temperature for an even cooking.

Not letting your meat sit before you cut

Image: Serious Eats

Waiting even 5 minutes before cutting into your steak can be prove to be worth it. When you cook meat, the juices meet (get it) in the middle and letting it rest after it’s done allows the them to redistribute to the other parts. Ultimately, you’re left with a juicy bite each time.

Frying wet veggies


Not drying your veggies before throwing them on a heated, oiled pan will not only cause the water to spray everywhere but also create steam and leave you with soggy veggies. Give them a quick pat with a paper towel before you start sautéing them for nice, crispy greens.

Alice Li
Originally from Vancouver, Alice is currently a student at NYU. Perpetually hungry and perpetually tired, her pastime of choice is ordering delivery while catching up on her favorite shows in bed.
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© GONG, Inc. All rights reserved