Redditors Share The 'Chefy' Techniques Home Cooks Should Know

Most everyone who prepares their own home-cooked meals, whether they perceive the activity as a chore or regard it as a source of joy, could benefit from a few tips and tricks used by professionals. The Reddit r/Cooking thread recently launched a discussion on this topic, encouraging users to share any "chefy" techniques that might assist average kitchen Joes and Janes in upping their culinary game.

U/vamos_pular recommended a simple but effective (and widely applicable) approach that has helped them hone their culinary skills: "Seasoning the food with salt at every stage of cooking. Just seasoning the food well improved my home cooking by a lot." Meanwhile, u/Prestigious_Park4704 had a more specific suggestion: making your own mayonnaise or aioli instead of buying it at the supermarket, a comment that received pushback from lovers of convenience (and Hellmann's). Here are the other chef-approved skills that Reddit users think everyone should learn.

Keep your kitchen clean and learn some basic sauces

Another chefy technique that's advantageous to adopt, according to Redditor u/Barsaman, involves cleaning as you cook. "If you have your hands free, remove all waste, all ingredients you won't need anymore, wash pots and pans and put them away, and wipe the counter if needed," they said. Not only will you clear valuable counter space, but you'll also save yourself some hassle after finishing your meal, when all you want to do is relax and recover from your food coma. Also regarding efficiency, U/DickieJoJo advised getting a head start on prep work if you're planning a meal that involves a lot of steps. "Chop, wash, and prepare what you can before the actual cooking starts," they said, a technique known as mise en place — which happens to be Anne Burrell's most important tip for new cooks.

Some suggested learning foundational recipes, such as those for whipped cream, béchamel, and even tartar sauce. Others shared quick tips, like salting your steak or chicken the night before cooking it and saving Parmesan rinds and vegetable scraps for homemade stock. Multiple people mentioned using MSG, learning the basics of sous vide, and practicing knife skills. Finally, one user had joke to offer instead: "Screaming expletives at everyone else in the kitchen." Even if you haven't reached Iron Chef status just yet, incorporating some of these chefy techniques into your cooking repertoire (except for that last one) should at least enhance the quality of your next home-cooked meal.