Last week was a big one in the land of Fat-Burning Man.
After working for several months with the top cooking bloggers in paleo, we released the Fat-Burning Chef Cookbook as a master collection of their finest recipes, some of which had never before been revealed.
One of the most impressive things about these bloggers is their uncanny ability to churn out recipe after recipe with incredible attention to detail and superb photography.
So we decided to ask them for their favorite kitchen and cooking tips so we could all get an insight into how they can routinely cook & create such incredible food.
We hope these tips help you in your own home as you cook healthy & tasty meals for your friends and family!
If you haven’t checked out the cookbook yet, head on over to FatBurningChef.com! It’s on sale for $20 off this week 🙂
15 Professional Cooking Tips From The Top Kitchens In Paleo
From freezer to feast. When I just can’t bear to pack one more work lunch, and I’m feeling really lazy, I don’t even bother to cook my food. Here’s what you do: Put two large servings of frozen vegetables in a microwaveable container then dot them with coconut oil or ghee. Add a good shake of garlic powder, salt, and pepper, then toss in microwaveable protein (grilled chicken, frozen cooked shrimp, browned ground beef, leftover steak or roast pork), cram on the lid, and shove the container your bag. At lunchtime, microwave the whole shebang for three minutes, and voila! instant lunch with no real cooking time. Bonus points if you bring along something to drizzle on top like Sunshine Sauce, Tahini Dressing, or Moroccan Dipping Sauce. It’s not a 4-star Michelin experience, but we all need to eat, like, 28 times a week, so a few of those meals can be “good enough.” It’s nutritious, it’s tastes good, and it’s ready fast.
Multi-pan! When I’m doing a big cookup for the week, I always have two pans going on the stove at once: one for meat and one for veggies. I clean and chop all the veggies I want to steam-sauté, and I set up an assembly line so I can move stuff in and out of the pans without needing to wash in between. Start with the fattiest meat and sauté ’til browned in the “meat” pan, then remove it from the pan and use the same pan, conveniently greased, to cook the next, form of protein. While the meat is cooking, fire up your “veggie” pan and steam-sauté one veggie after another, using the same water. Just cook one veg, remove it with a slotted spoon to a storage container, keeping the water in the pan hot, so you can add the next veg to the steam bath. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Bonus points: On a third burner, hard boil a dozen eggs for high-quality, grab-and-go protein. I guarantee that with this method, you can make enough food for 3-4 days in about an hour.
Recruit your own team of sous chefs. If you have kids, use them for simple tasks like mixing or pouring. If you have a significant other, get them to do more difficult tasks. Not only does involving other people make the work go faster, but it also makes it more fun. For many, memories built in the kitchen are very significant in their lives, so go in there and make some with your loved ones!
Plan any big cooking events ahead of time and to prep ingredients via instruction and measurement 30-40 minutes before cooking and place them separately in bowls so you can easily toss each ingredient in when needed.
“Don’t think that everything you make has to be fancy or complicated in order to eat it. Sometimes you just have to throw some ingredients together and make it work, even if it’s not camera worthy! If you give yourself permission to eat very simply and not feel like you have to slave over every meal, you’re more likely to stick within the parameters of this way of eating.”
Cook with someone else. Many people recognize that eating is a social exercise, but I think cooking can be too. When I cook with others, it feels like a creative project. The end result is often better as a result of multiple minds striving towards the same goal. And let’s be honest…clean up is way more fun when it is not done alone!
Use everything you can use, throw away as little as possible. For cauliflowers, you can use the leaves as a sort of cabbage, the peeled stem of a broccoli tastes like kohlrabi, the peels of asparagus are great for cooking them in broth for a awesome flavour, the leftover bones when you made chicken wings (from organic, free range chicken of course) are awesome for broth, and so on. Paleo also means to be economical!
When you have a sweet tooth and long for some dessert but you don´t wanna get into much work, just get yourself some frozen mixed berries, throw on some ceylon cinnamon, sea salt, maybe nuts, coconut chips and pour some coconut milk over it, let it set a bit, and enjoy. My favourite dessert, and so easy!
For work days or when you don´t have much time at all, Cook up a big pot or curry with minced meat, coconut milk, pureed tomatoes, a good amount of spices like curcuma, chili, pepper, coriander, and some veggies and freeze them in portions. The night before you need them, just let em defrost in your fridge till morning and put em in the microwave lunchtime!
Also, if you´re tight with time, you can prepare salads for 3, 4 days just with rare shredded veggies like carrots, cabbage, radishes and the day you need them, just cut up some tomatos, cucumbers, olives or what you like in your salads and throw some quick protein in there like cooked chicken, canned tuna or fry up some prawns in coconut oil. Prepare some vinaigrette for the week with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper (when you wanna get fancy, put some mustard, tomato paste, herbs and good honey in there) and pour some over it when it´s done. It´s as easy as that!
Whatever you are making, make more.
Whether it is baking 3 sweet potatoes rather than 1, making double of a recipe and freezing half, or just peeling multiple carrots and putting some in the fridge, this will make your life SO much easier. Trust me!
My favourite cooking tip is to make time to cook. It’s really important to set aside enough time to enjoy the cooking process rather than rushing through it in a stressed out frenzy. Before embarking on your culinary journey, read through the recipe and figure out what ingredients you need and how long the recipe will take you from start to finish. Getting your ingredients from a local (preferably organic) farmer is a great way to connect with your community and get fresh seasonal food. Before you start cooking, set the mood my putting in your favourite tunes so cooking feels like a fun activity rather than a chore. Food always tastes better when it is made with love!
After transitioning to paleo and ditching my go-to PAM cooking spray, I began to research other cooking oils that weren’t full of ingredients I couldn’t pronounce. Coconut oil, ghee, clarified butter and EVOO were all on the list but are obviously more expensive than any of the icky, industrial seed oils out there.
My favorite early discovery that has now become my go-to for sauteing and pan-frying is to save all the excess grease from cooked bacon, ground pork, and any other meat and use it to cook your veggies or side-dishes. You want to make sure the fat you save is only from healthy, pastured animals though because otherwise it will be full of toxins! I save small, glass jars to store my grease; curry paste jars work the best, but make sure you clean them out well or your cooking fat will taste like curry! In my opinion, there isn’t anything much tastier for breakfast than farm-fresh eggs fried in bacon grease 🙂
If you are cooking for a party or for a super important guest, never ever experiment with a new recipe or new ingredients. Stick to your best tried and true recipes!
When making baked goods, room temperature eggs mix better into the batter and rise more easily. To quickly bring eggs to room temperature, place them in a bowl of very warm water for about 5 minutes.
Once a week, make a big batch of bone broth on the stove or in your slow-cooker. Get good-quality bones directly from your butcher or collect the bones from your meat and chicken carcasses in the freezer throughout the week. Bone broth can be kept in the fridge for 4-5 days, but it also freezes very well if you have a big batch. Drink a warm cup of gut-healing and nutrient-rich bone broth in the morning instead of coffee to help your start your day healthily. You can also use your bone broth for soups, stews and sauces. Enjoy!
Tip #1: If you’re baking for just yourself or a small group, half or quarter your recipe and bake individual servings in ramekins or cupcake tins. Otherwise, if you’re like me, you might regrettably polish off a whole cake or pie by yourself.
Tip #2: My most valuable kitchen tool is a cast iron skillet. It heats evenly and consistently for the perfectly cooked steak, scrambled eggs, stir fry, and pretty much anything else you cook in it. It’s versatile since you can throw it in the oven, and it lasts forever. To care for your skillet, rinse it under hot water after each use, then dry and lightly coat it with coconut oil.
Tip #3: Everything taste better when it’s cooked in bacon fat. Place a few room-temperature pieces of bacon in your cold skillet, and turn up the heat to medium-low. Once it starts to sizzle, bring the heat up to medium and cook until the fat melts into the pan, flipping once. Use the bacon fat like a magical elixir to turn anything into an incredible dish — Brussels sprouts, collard greens, eggs, burgers, you name it.
Start simple. Master one recipe. Then switch it up a little bit. Repeat. Soon, you’ll have prepared and cooked enough meals to create your very own cookbook!
Keep the freezer stocked with quick paleo foods. This makes it easy to stay on track when you need a fast meal. One of my favorites is frozen shrimp – they will thaw in a bowl of cold water in about five minutes. Toss with some grass-fed ghee, garlic and herbs and throw them on the grill. You’ve got dinner in less time than ordering take out.
My biggest advice would be to plan ahead. I know that is easier said than done, but I save so much time by prepping and making meals ahead of time. I take my breakfast and lunch with me to work every day, so every weekend I spend a little time making a few large meals that I can use for breakfast and lunch for the week. All I have to do is portion everything out the night before and throw it in my lunch bag. I usually end up making breakfast skillets with meat and veggies (eggs would be good too) and for lunches I usually throw some meat, like a roast, in to the slow cooker and roast some veggies. Both of those options have a lot of variety and I’m able to change the protein and veggies I’m using every week. Also, if I get bored with the same thing everyday then I make small adjustments like turning it into a salad, adding different veggies, or adding some broth for a soup, etc.
Use what you have and keep experimenting until you figure out what works good together. The more you cook the better you get.
Share your own tips in the comments below!