10 Easy Cooking Tips for the Budding Chef

Tom Volpe March 19, 2023

Are you a budding chef looking to make cooking more enjoyable and stress-free? Whether you're new to the kitchen or an experienced cook, following these ten simple cooking tips will make your prep work much more efficient.

From preparation techniques that save time and reduce mess to utilising basic ingredients creatively, these expert chefs' recommendations will bring satisfaction (and delicious food) into your cooked meals. Get ready for exciting culinary adventures as we dive into our list of essential cooking tips!

First Things First: Hygiene

For the aspiring culinary artist, hygiene must come first and foremost. Even a delectable dish can become unappetising when careless practices are followed. When preparing food, ensure it has no dirt, chemicals or other impurities. If handling raw meat or poultry, washing your hands thoroughly after touching them is important to prevent contamination of other foods.

Even if one is adept at cooking, safety should still be observed when handling hot surfaces such as a stove top’s burners or an oven door’s handle. Keeping counters clean and dishes sterilized will also help keep food tasting delicious and looking great!

Now that hygiene is out of the way, here are our 10 cooking tips for newbies:

1. Plan Your Meals in Advance

Being a budding chef can be overwhelming, but you don't have to worry about not having time to cook. With the right planning, you can make mealtime easier and less stressful. One helpful tip is to plan your meals for a few days at a time. This will allow you to create a shopping list and avoid running out of ingredients when it's time to cook. Stocking up on staple food items like rice, pasta, grains, and canned goods can also help save time.

Another tip is to look for shortcuts while cooking - try pre-chopped vegetables or pre-mixed sauces in the store. You can also sneak in some cooking hacks, like grilling multiple items at once or baking dishes with foil or parchment paper instead of scrubbing baking sheets afterwards. With creative planning and strategic grocery shopping, meal prep will soon become a piece of cake!

2. Invest in Quality Cooking Tools

Investing in quality cooking tools is essential for any aspiring chef, as it ensures that executing recipes is smooth. Boiling water taps are becoming increasingly popular due to their time-saving capabilities, as having one of these innovative appliances removes the need for bringing multiple pans to the boil, which would normally eat into your cooking time. Expanding your collection of kitchen appliances furthers the ease of cooking, from sous, vide devices to food processors.


As there are so many on the market today, find the products that suit your needs and budget; investing in quality means these pieces can last for years. Every cook must also be equipped with basic kitchen tools such as knives, measuring cups, cutting boards, whisks and wooden spoons – having these in the arsenal ensures convenience when creating masterpieces in the kitchen.

3. Keep Your Kitchen Organised

Keeping your kitchen organised is an essential part of becoming a better chef. It is key to saving time and making the cooking process much smoother and faster when you know where everything is. One easy tip to keep your kitchen organised is to separate utensils into categories, such as having one drawer devoted solely to wooden spoons or grouping all the measuring cups.

You can give each category its own designated spot so that they are easily accessible when you need them. This organisation system can help you save time by saving you the headache of searching high and low for items otherwise hidden in the depths of a disorganised cupboard. So, keep it organised for an effortless cooking experience next time you're in the kitchen!

4. Read Recipes Carefully Before Starting

As a budding chef, eating healthily is an important part of a nutritious lifestyle. One of the easiest and most effective ways to ensure healthy eating habits is to read recipes carefully before cooking. In doing so, chefs can be sure that the ingredients needed for the dish are on hand and double-check measurements and cooking times. This habit saves time by eliminating any guesswork and ensures an optimum level of nutrition.

As an added tip, it's a great idea to have a few similar recipes on hand in case certain ingredients are unavailable or more time than anticipated is needed in preparation. Reading before cooking will help put you on the path towards creating successful and delicious dishes!

5. Prep Your Ingredients Before Cooking

It’s easy to get overwhelmed standing at the stove, watching pot after pot bubbling away. But there are savvy tips and tricks to make cooking a lot easier. One of the best tips is to prep your ingredients before you start. Wash and cut vegetables, measure out spices and prepare sauces beforehand so everything is ready to go when you need it during the cooking process.

avocado, tomatoes, eggs, mushrooms, spring onions on a chopping board


Preparing ingredients before cooking will save you time and help avoid recipe timing or measurement mistakes. Mediterranean-style cuisine is the perfect example of why this tip should not be underestimated – carefully preparing herbs, oils, and pulses before cooking allows complex dishes to be created much more easily than if done on the fly.

6. Taste as You Go

One of the most important tools any budding chef should have in their repertoire is the ability to taste as they go accurately. Taking the time to season and adjust the flavours of your dishes individually can be difficult, but with a few simple tips, you can easily become an expert taster.

A great tip is to prefer salts, herbs and spices in small batches, then gradually adding them throughout cooking, then tasting along the way. This will help ensure you don't overwhelm a dish with one ingredient or overpower flavours. Additionally, note what ingredients work well together and how other ingredients complement that flavour profile. Aiming for balance within your flavours will create an exquisite dish.

Salt + Pepper: the Chef’s Best Friends

No cooking arsenal is complete without salt and pepper. These two pantry staples are the chef’s best friends, as they are essential to unlocking flavour in dishes. Salt brings out the flavour of food, while pepper adds a pungent heat that complements many different ingredients.

When cooking with salt and pepper, it's important to remember that a little goes a long way. Don’t be afraid to experiment, but be sure to taste as you go so you can adjust the seasoning accordingly. You don’t want too much of either ingredient, or it can overpower your dish.

7. Don't Be Afraid to Experiment with Flavours

Every chef knows the trick to great-tasting meals lies in the balance of flavours. One way to get creative in the kitchen is to experiment with different flavours – spices, herbs, fruits, vegetables, and more. Start by familiarising yourself with the pantry items you have at home: What spices do you have? Which herbs are growing in your garden or window box? Which fruits and vegetables are currently in season?

As you work through recipes, don’t be afraid to add ingredients or change flavours as you feel fit. Trying out small variances can lead to exciting new dishes uniquely tailored to your preferences. There’s no need for a chef’s hat just yet – play around with your food and discover what works best for you.

Get to Know Your Cuisines

Cooking is a journey. As you progress in your cooking skills, it helps you understand different cuisines and cooking techniques to explore new recipes confidently.

Try researching the basics of global cuisine – from Thai to Mexican or Chinese to Moroccan; there are thousands of recipes just waiting for your culinary touch. Knowing the basics of cooking techniques, flavour profiles, and ingredients will help you create delicious dishes tailored to your tastes – so don’t be afraid to get cooking!

8. Clean as You Cook

Clean as you cook is an excellent tip for any budding chef to keep in mind. It's not only about prepping ingredients and then cooking with them but also about ensuring the area where the meal is being prepared is kept clean. One way to do this quickly and with minimal effort is with boiling water. By using boiling water to sanitise chopping boards and knives as you go, you can ensure maximum hygiene throughout cooking.

9. Use a Meat Thermometer for Perfectly Cooked Proteins

Using a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of proteins is essential to perfecting cooking for any budding chef. When you use one, you can ensure that your proteins are properly cooked and safely eaten. All types of meats, from chicken and beef to seafood, require different cooking temperatures; a thermometer will make this much easier. The required temperatures for each protein source are:

  • Chicken Breast – 165°F (75°C)
  • Beef Steak – 145°F (63°C)
  • Seafood – 145°F (63°C)

Here's the deal: with a simple glance at the thermometer, you can know whether the protein is done. Plus, you'll never have to guess if a piece of chicken or steak is raw or overcooked - because the thermometer takes all that guesswork out of the equation.

Food Safety When Handling Meat

When cooking meat, it's important to follow safe handling techniques. This means washing your hands thoroughly before and after handling raw meat, cooking it to a safe temperature, and storing it in the refrigerator within two hours of cooking. It's also important to use separate cutting boards for vegetables and meats and separate knives for each type of food.

Following the right safety procedures when cooking with meat is essential for cooking healthy and delicious meals. With these tips, you can easily become a confident chef who can handle ingredients safely and deliciously!

10. Practice Makes Perfect

Being a chef doesn't just come naturally - it's an acquired skill that must be honed through hard work and perseverance. Practising makes perfect, so if you want to make your weekly meals more interesting or venture into the exciting world of cooking, you need to buckle down and get practice. Start small with easy dishes like mac and cheese or grilled salmon, being careful to measure exactly and follow instructions carefully.

a woman smiling while cooking inside a kitchen


As you try new recipes, pay attention to flavours and textures, jotting down notes to easily recreate the dish when something turns out particularly scrumptious. Learning how to execute a delicious meal effortlessly is a rewarding experience any budding chef should strive for.

Easy Recipe Ideas for Beginners

One of the best things to consider when it comes to cooking and trying new recipes is that it doesn't have to be daunting. Some delicious and easy recipes for beginner cooks will allow you to get the hang of things without too much difficulty.

If you're unsure where to start, look at classic recipes such as spaghetti bolognese or chilli con carne. Both dishes use basic ingredients found in most kitchens - ground beef, onions, garlic, and herbs for the spaghetti and beans for chilli - and can be cooked up relatively easily in an hour or so.

Once you've mastered these dishes, you can build on the basics by experimenting with different flavours and seasonings. Ultimately, learning to cook is about having fun, stepping out of your comfort zone, and enjoying great food with your loved ones.


After reading this blog post, it's clear that aspiring chefs have many helpful tools for their cooking journey. The key is to find the easy cooking tips that work with your lifestyle, skill set and favourite dishes. Whether you're new to cooking or have done it for years, take a step back and review these ten easy cooking tips before you head into the kitchen. Additionally, don't forget to track your successes in a notes app or recipe journal! You may even feel inspired to try something new on your next culinary adventure. Happy cooking!

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