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Secrets of Success

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Please note these are member-submitted secrets and are not reviewed by SparkPeople's health experts for accuracy. If you feel a secret is inappropriate, please click the "Report Inappropriate Secret" on the secret's page and our staff will review it.

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Easy produce washing, drying, & prep.

To save time I wash all my weekly produce in the sink at once and drain it in the dish drainer (it only held clean dishes). The dish drainer is large enough to handle the entire load, and the silverware cup is perfect for herbs, Swiss chard, celery, or carrots. I leave it all to drain for an hour, then prep the veg for cooking & put them into containers, dry & chop the parsley & put it into a jar, and I"m done 'til next week. The whole process takes 1/2 hour excluding drying time.

- Submitted by THISYEARSMODEL 7/22/2011 in Cooking | 1 Comment
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31

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Capers

I love capers! I have been adding them to salads, pastas, and anything else that I may want to add some extra flavor to...and they have barely any calories.

- Submitted by TREEBW 7/20/2011 in Cooking | 6 Comments
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46

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Shirataki Noodles!

Substitute these noodles for your regular pasta dishes and save a bunch of calories...these noodles have 0, count 'em, 0 calories and taste yummy in soup, stirfry or anything you would use pasta for

- Submitted by DWAN1969 7/19/2011 in Cooking | 1 Comment
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25

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perfect rice every time

instead of cooking rice at a fixed temp the whole time, cook on medium high for 7 min, medium for 10 min, and medium low for 9 min. The weird part is when measuring water, add water until it comes to top of your first knuckle when your finger is resting lightly on top of the rice. (Washing hands first highly recommended if cooking for others). I'm not sure why it works, but I like this trick better than a rice cooker.

- Submitted by CAMOGIE3 7/18/2011 in Cooking | 3 Comments
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58

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Peanut butter-a-holic

I am a peanut butter lover could eat it all the time :) Well I recently found PB2 which is a pressed peanut butter. It basically removes all of the oil leaving you with a powdered peanut butter that you add to dishes or favorite drink!!! Way less calories and still get the peanut butter flavor :) Their website also has lots of great recipes. PB2 only has 45 calories so this cuts about 150 calories compared to regular peanut butter emoticon

- Submitted by SUPERMOM8482 7/18/2011 in Cooking | 8 Comments
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45

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Cleaning kitchen

I always make a sink of dish water, so when i am cooking i can wash dishes through the process to prevent cleaning all the dishes at the end of cooking. My kitchen is clean and my meal is ready. emoticon

- Submitted by JCLARK712 7/13/2011 in Cooking | 5 Comments
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Meat

After grilling or baking meat in the oven put the meat on a plate and cover in foil. This allows the meat to rest so you do not lose the juices. Allow to rest 3 or 4 minutes.

- Submitted by MARYJOANNA 7/13/2011 in Cooking | 1 Comment
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Pre-Prep meats

Freeze your meats in marinades! I buy meat in bulk, cut off the excess fat and pre chop it then I mix up my marinades myself (so that I can use less fatening items and healthier ingredients) lable the freezer bag with whatever you are mixing up then throw it in the freezer and forget it until you need it- this saves me a huge amount of time- all I have to do is pull the bag of meat out of the freezer the night before and I have flavorful ready to cook meats the next evening

- Submitted by MAMAKBBV 7/12/2011 in Cooking | 2 Comments
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Cut The Fat While Baking

When baking one of your favorite recipes use apple sauce instead of oil. If you want to cut only half of the fat use some apple sauce and some oil. If the recipe calls for 1/2 Cup of oil use 1/4 cup apple sauce & 1/4 cup apple sauce. I have always used apple sauce instead of the oil, baked goods are moist and delicious. You can also use Egg Beaters and Splenda to cut more fat and calories. emoticon

- Submitted by DAKOTADEBBIE 7/10/2011 in Cooking | 1 Comment
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Shortcut Potato Salad

I use frozen diced hash brown potatoes as the start of my potato salad. I thaw them overnight in the frig. It's SO much easier and quicker than dicing my own, and bonus-they're already cooked! Enjoy!

- Submitted by 1GR8FULGAL 7/3/2011 in Cooking | 4 Comments
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