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u/kaidomac · 3 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

part 2/2

Second, there are ways to take a more cost-effective approach. I always bring up the physics example of the apple falling on Newton's head, which made him realize gravity existed, and then he dedicated his whole life to figuring out the formula for gravity; then you saunter up to science class one day, learn F=ma, and that's that! Likewise, a lot of smart & persistent people have worked hard to create formulas for food, called recipes, which you can try & learn & get good results at simply by following their step-by-step checklist.

Part of getting good at cooking is learning the underlying tools, technique, and knowledge required for flavor combinations, food pairings, spice mixes, cooking methods, etc., but part of it is also just burning through a bunch of recipes & getting exposure to good results & to various processes, without having to master every single one right off the bat & then think up new ways to use them. So in addition to learning how to cook in general, I'd also recommend simply following a bunch of recipes initially, rather than trying to re-invent the wheel, which can help you get better results initially, simply because you have proven instructions to follow! There are a million great resources for doing this; I'll share just a few here:

  • Website: Serious Eats: Most recipes are split into a detailed explanation & then a separate page for the recipe itself. Excellent learning resource!
  • Book: The Food Lab: By Kenji of the Serious Eats website. This is a really excellent book to learn cooking step-by-step, complete with full-color pictures & detailed explanations.
  • Website: ChefSteps: An excellent resource for detailed recipes from the company that makes the Joule sous-vide machine (note that not all recipes are sous-vide!)
  • Show: Good Eats with Alton Brown (on TV or available to purchase online); lots of detailed walkthroughs & tribal knowledge shared in each episode.
  • Book: Modern Sauces: 150 sauces, plus great explanations to build up your knowledge about sauces. One thing I've realized over time is that most restaurants create amazing flavor through their sauces, whether it's something as basic as Big Mac sauce at McDonald's or a super fancy steak sauce at an elegant, high-end restaurant.
  • Show: "Wok Star" by Eleanor Ho: She teaches a fantastic, recipe-free workflow for creating stir-fry dishes using a wok & a hi-heat portable burner. Note that you can buy the discs (which are just simple recordings of her classes) & printed materials separately from the wok & burner if you already have the tools. She's put together a really great system for teaching wok cooking, so if you're interested in learning the "flowchart" for quick & healthy meals using the stir-fry method, this is the best resource I've ever come across!

    Third, it helps to have some good introductions to the different aspects of food. Here's a few links to read to help kick-start your education process:

  • Basic cooking advice & approach
  • How to cook a chicken breast so it's good every time
  • A quick discussion about "master" recipes
  • Introduction to spices
  • How our bodies works in relation to food & a bit more on food & exercise
  • A quick introduction to complete foods
  • My approach to meal prep & a bit more information on the Look Book
  • Some tips for getting organized in your kitchen (kitchen part specifically is a few posts down)

    Anyway, learning how to cook can definitely be discouraging & can absolutely be a money-drain, because you're going to have to make a lot of mistakes, due to the learning process, and make also a lot of just plain mediocre food before you start hitting some home-runs. I'd recommend making sure that you have a recipe storage system for capturing the recipes & workflows you really like.

    I'd also recommend adopting the "growth" mindset when it comes to cooking, because it's easy to quit in the face of setbacks & label yourself as a terrible cook or view cooking at home as hard or dumb or whatever. If you look at cooking from a big-picture perspective, you're going to be alive until you die, and you've gotta eat every day, so imo at least, it's totally worth learning how to cook so that you can save money & enhance the enjoyability of each meal that you cook while you can!

    I think part of that is just accepting that it's going to take some time & practice (and money) as you grow & develop your skills, your personal recipe database, and the various workflows available for things like making breads or grilling or stir-frying or whatever you want to dive into. Probably the best way to save money, at this point in your cooking education, is to find & follow top-rated recipes. Pinterest has a pretty good algorithm for bubbling up really good recipes, so if you type in "chocolate-chip cookie" into the Pinterest search & try a recipe (exactly as printed, step-by-step) on the first page of results, then you're likely to get much better results than just winging it...while also building up your cooking skills in the process & getting that background knowledge & hands-on time required to get better at cooking!
u/DangCaptainDingDong · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

TLDR: I made a shopping list at the end.


I think most people who are serious about having a good set of knives would advise you to not actually buy knives in a set. It is useful to keep in mind that most knife sets, especially at your budget range or lower priced, are sets for marketing reasons and not a value buy. Certain traits like the number of items included in the set make them seem like you are getting a lot of items for your money, and then shortcuts are taken to increase the number of items versus the quality items. This is a marketing trick. It sounds like you are getting more value the higher the number of stated pieces there are.

For example of typical cost saving shortcuts used in sets: you typically want a bread knife to be 9 or 10 inches, or a 8 inch chef's knife, but shorter lengths will be typical when in a set. You probably don't need to be concerned about having the 6 or 8 steak knives of low quality (again, to increase the number of pieces in the set to make it seem like a good value). In fact, just 3 or 4 high quality knives will perform everything you need of them. For the most part, you can get by on 90% or 95% of what you might do with just a workhorse chef's knife if you need to.


My recommended path therefore is to build your own set. This also has the benefit of letting you pick and choose for each specific piece rather than being locked into one brand or one style, and can allow you to budget things out to pick up a quality piece when you can afford it rather than thinking you should have everything all at once.

In order of how you should acquire your pieces:

First, knives are tools that are subject to degradation in performance as they are used. It is important that you mitigate this by investing in protecting the edge of the knife when not in use and that you are able to regularly maintain the edge. You will want either a good wood block or knife edge guards or a good drawer holder to keep your knives safe from non-use related damage. I would lean towards definitely having a wood block or wood drawer holder. It is probably worth planning for the future here, so get what you need. This item should last for a long time so the money will not be wasted.

Look for something that will hold everything you eventually need. Make sure there is a slot that will hold a honing rod. You might want a kitchen shears in the future, so a slot for that is good, too. Ideally, there will be more than one slot that will handle a larger knife (2 inch wide or larger, for more than one chef's knife, santoku, etc.) and if it is an angle block the high positions will be long enough for 10 inch or longer knives. I really like the 17 slot options from cutlery and more. These are normally $50 or so, but can go on sale multiple times per year. Again - this will last you for your lifetime so find what you want for your ultimate plan and go for it.

Again, since it is not worth having a knife that doesn't work, you will need to maintain the edge. You do not need to be an expert sharpener, as you can find this as a service, but regular honing is a good way to only need this service maybe once or twice per year. Keep in mind that a sharp knife is safer than a dull knife, because you can stay in control and not need to use excess force with a sharp knife. An ER visit because of a dull knife will cost a lot more than what you spend on a good knife that can be kept sharp. You can shop around for this, but I would still look for something of quality. The Shun honing steel has a nice feature where it has a built in angle guide (this is at 16 degrees, but that is very close to common for a lot of knives).

So now that you are finally ready to look at knives, you want to start out worried only about 3 good knives: A chef's knife, a bread knife, and a paring knife. You do not need to spend a lot on the bread or paring knives to get you going, in fact some of the options at low price ranges for these are really good performers.

For a bread knife, the Mercer Millennia 10 inch wavy can be found for about $15. (as mentioned before, you'd likely get a shorter length in a normal set in a big box store). For a paring knife, a Victorinox 3.25 inch will be just a few dollars. It's nothing fancy and perhaps the handle seems small and thin, but for getting going this works great.

The chef's knife will be your main workhorse, easily taking care of 90% or more of what you are doing in the kitchen. It is very worthwhile to invest in this piece.

It is also worthwhile, in my opinion, to have more than one chef's knife (or mix with other workhorse knives, i.e. a nakiri or santoku, etc.). I would recommend making a long term plan to save for a quality piece in this category eventually (and with my approach of your knife block being able to handle more than one of a main type of knife you will not need to worry about storing it safely). Eventually you might want to look at the $130+ options in this category, but that is for the future.

In the meantime, with the budget range, I would go for the Victorinox Fibrox Pro 8 inch chef's knife. Usually around $35-$45. I have knives 3 times as expensive but still grab this if I need to swap to a clean knife or think I will need to be a bit more rough with the chopping.


Current Shopping List (prices subject to change with sales/economics):

u/thergoat · 3 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

My recommendations:


  1. Tasty videos! They’re short, so you can binge a bunch, but they’re also straightforward and usually on the simpler side.

  2. “Food Wishes” on YouTube. I’ve been watching them for over a decade - lighthearted, fun learning that takes you step by step through TONS of dishes. I cook almost daily, and I can credit this guy for most of my inspiration.

  3. Binging with Babish & Basics with Babish. Similar to good wishes, but a little more laid back (which is an accomplishment) and a bit higher production quality IMO.

  4. Bon Apetit! Also YouTube. So many fun personalities, everyone has different specialties, it’s like learning from experts that feel like your friends. Carla & Molly have the best recipes and explanations IMO, but they’re all wonderful.


    These are more advanced, but Serious Eats (google it) never lets you down when it comes to recipes, but they’re definitely more involved (hours to days).

    One of the serious eats writers, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is a PhD Biologist (I think biology...) who wrote The Food Lab. This man is the god of cooking. 100% scientifically and experimentally tested, this book will teach you everything you ever need to know about cooking and then some. HIGHLY recommend getting a copy. The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science

    Finally, if you don’t want to drop $20 (it’s dropped by ~60% since I bought it! Definitely get a copy!!!) on that, but want to be healthy and learn easy, flavor packed recipes, pick up a copy of The Thug Kitchen. It’s vegan, but the skills are useful anywhere and I’ve yet to find anyone - carnivores included - that’s disliked a single recipe. I got a copy for myself, my girlfriend, a good friend of mine, and my brother.

    Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook: Eat Like You Give a F*ck (Thug Kitchen Cookbooks)
u/SheSaidSam · 3 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

This is how I did it a few years ago.

Read alton brown's book, I'm just here for the food

Which will teach you the basics and what you're trying to accomplish by using different cooking methods. It greatly increased my confidence in the kitchen. Also check out his good eats series.

Also I think a decent meat thermometer
Is a great purchase as it takes the guess work out of when meat is done cooking, is supremely useful for beginners, and something you'll be able to use forever.

The thermapen is the one I got but expensive but worth it.

Subscribe to a bunch of cooking subreddits.

And I'm gonna suggest something different now instead of buying a set list of things you need to cook anything.

Instead, I suggest finding something you really enjoy eating like something you're an expert on eating at restaurants, I chose burgers, you can do pizza, or spaghetti, hot wings whatever. Then go on and find the appropriate recipe. Idea is to choose something you have an idea of how it's supposed to taste and like enough to cook a few different versions of. Then you buy the few things you need to cook that thing. A cast iron pot, a metal spatula whatever. And you learn how to do things/buy equipment as needed for various recipes related to it. For example you may learn how to sautée and Carmelize onions for a burger recipe.

Cook with someone else, it's way more fun, is a great date idea, doesn't matter if it's the blind leading the blind or someone that you can learn a lot from. It'll make you more comfortable in the kitchen.

Finally, you'll have to pay your dues for a little bit, I used to hate cooking, everything takes way longer then it should, you make a big mess, things don't work out like you planned, but pretty soon you make things that turn out great every once in a while. You still mess up occasionally, but you'll start learning why things don't turn out well and you'll start being able to save things if you make a mistake. Now that I'm pretty good at it I sort of enjoy it.

u/JimmyPellen · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

for nutrition, head on over to your Health Care Provider's website. They should have many helpful articles on eating right. Failing that, check out WebMD's suggestions.

I'm gonna presume it's just you (for now at least). One of the things you'll notice about a lot of recipes out there is that the serving sizes. Check out r/CookingForOne.

Also look over r/AskCulinary. It has a great FAQ (covers books, equipment and ingredients for beginners and experts alike) and Index.

Watch some Julia Child and Alton Brown videos.

for books, head over to your used bookstore and get yourself a copy of The Joy Of Cooking, Ratio and The Flavor Bible. This last one will help you a LOT with your spices.

Yes, I'm suggesting that you spend money. But the equipment (knives, cast iron, etc) and books are an investment. And you don't have to get them all at once.

Finally, it's great when you find items on sale in the produce section of your local market. But if it spoils before you use it all, it's wasted money and food. This is when your local salad bar can be a great help.

Good luck.

Edit: get yourself a rice cooker/steamer. a simple one-button model is all you really need. Always perfect rice and you can steam your veggies in the basket as well. Much healthier. Also, once you get more confident, you can look up some copycat recipes for your favorite fast food restaurant items.

u/MrBill1983 · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Do yourself a favor and get a copy of The Joy of Cooking. If you can't afford it, get it second hand or ask for it for xmas or something. If you find a good and/or cheap ingredient, use the glossary to look it up, and there's usually information about it. Once you have the kitchen skills to follow a recipe reasonably closely, you're golden.

Another tip, think about a food you LOVE to eat (something reasonably healthy, whose ingredients are in your budget). Look up a recipe for that, then make it any time you don't know what else to make (why not make it every day?). Keep making it until it is exactly what you want, and you've internalized the recipe; then, move on to another dish.

My advice is to get stuff to measure as you cook, measuring cups, measuring spoons, a thermometer, and a scale. Try to be accurate when you cook.

Familiarize yourself with using knives. Find out how to do basic cuts. Get a chef's knife, everything else, buy as you need them. Do take care of your knife(s), keep them fairly sharp (sharp knives are safer than dull ones). Things shouldn't take lots of force to cut (if you do, you may be doing it wrong)

Familiarize yourself with fundamental techniques: roasting, sauteing, steaming, boiling, blanching. Easy, once you know how.

Everything else (pans/gadgets/dishes), buy as you need them.

In my experience, everything goes on sale at one time or another, so being able to process any given raw material into edible food is important. The more you cook, the better you'll be.

Also, I don't know if you have time, but some cooking shows are very good at teaching cooking. I really like good eats, which is available on netflix. Never be afraid to ask somebody how to do something.

Good luck.

u/Haught_Schmoes · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef's Knife (8 inch)

The Fibrox series is the classic chef knife series. Known for good quality and able to keep a good edge for a while. Can't go wrong here. Like other comments have said they also have paring knives and bread knives, all at reasonable prices.

Mercer Culinary M22608 Millennia 8-Inch Chef's Knife

The Mercer Millennia series is great if you're really on a budget. I own one of these but I will say that after about a good 6 months of use it is losing its edge quite a bit (also possibly due to roommates chopping stuff on the hard metal table. I'm a little bitter about it.) Came sharp and will stay sharp with some care.

Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Short Bolster Forged Chef's Knife, 8 Inch

Same company, forged blade. Little nicer, will most likely keep an edge a little longer.

As far as chef knives go, these are some budget picks and probably what most people would recommend unless you want something much nicer! :)

Edit: Also if you are looking for something much nicer, jump down the rabbit hole that is /r/chefknives

It's a steep slope lol

u/ChangloriousBastard · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

As a new chef, here are a few places to start:

  1. Before you learn specific recipes, it's important that you have the right tools and you know how to use them. For a beginner, I think you can get by with the basics: A good chef's knife (this is a good starting point), a decent cutting board, a frying pan, a larger pot, a saucepan, and some basic measuring equipment (measuring cup and measuring spoons). If you can afford it, I'd splurge a bit on the knife and pots/pans. Quality tools will last a long time and make your life a lot easier.

  2. Once you have a knife and some tools, maybe spend some time practicing your knife skills. Find a cheap grocer and buy a bunch of veggies and practice different cuts. Learn to hold your knife properly and how to use it safely (there are plenty of videos on this).

  3. Once you know how to use your tools safely, find a recipe and follow it as closely as possible. As you grow, you'll learn how to adapt recipes to your tastes, but starting out it's easier to just copy what other people have done.

  4. Some of the recipes I think are beginner friendly are things like stir-frys (great for practicing knife skills, but very forgiving with mistakes), pasta/sauces (dried pasta is simple enough to cook, and you can explore a lot with sauces), simple baking stuff like pancakes (practice measurements and dealing with wet/dry ingredients), and tacos (plenty of flavor options, but hard to get wrong).

  5. While you cook and as you eat your food, try and pay attention to what's going right and what's going wrong. If you're having trouble getting the ingredients on heat at the right times, maybe you need to improve your prep. If things are overcooked or undercooked, maybe your heating vessel has its own traits that you need to learn. Try and taste each ingredient to see how it adds to the whole; that information helps you build your own recipes.


    To answer your question about what to cook -- cook what you want to eat.

    The basics of cooking don't really differ from recipe to recipe. Barring some of the extravagantly delicate recipes, you're going to be using the same skills over and over again. Sometime it's a longer process, but in general you're just taking ingredients, cutting them or combining them into the right shape and size, putting them in the right cooking vessel, applying heat at the right time, and plating.

    Others have mentioned eggs, and that's an okay place to start. As I mentioned above, stir frys, tacos, pancakes, and pastas/sauces are all easy and adaptable.
u/daddywombat · 3 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

I also agree with the idea of going to the library or bookshops to browse before you buy. But for many years, my absolute go to cookbook has been Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything. If I could only have one cookbook, this would be it. I like simple approaches to cooking, and Mark writes in a way that makes even the most daunting recipes approachable. For the same reason, I'm a big fan of Jamie Oliver's cookbooks. They're written in the same way. If you ever get a chance to watch his early BBC series the Naked Chef it's wonderful. Technnology abounds however, and I find myself going more and more often to the wonderful and free New York Times Cooking app on my iPhone. Good Luck!

u/yezzir_fosho · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Learning to cook for the first time in college, my standard was:

2 pots (1 big, 1 small w/ lids), 2 pans (1 big, 1 small), tupperware (super important!), a spatula, 2 tongs (1 big, 1 small), measuring cups, cutting board, can opener, peeler, oven mitts, colander, dish/kitchen towel, paper towel rolls and holder, baking pan, a chef knife, and a knife sharpener. You can upgrade your kitchen as you improve/explore your cooking venture.

Keep in mind none of this has to be top notch quality when starting out. Most of my kitchen stuff was from Dollar Tree and lasted throughout my 8 years of college and graduate school. I actually still use the same peeler now I think about it lol. Anything Dollar Tree didn't have, thrift stores, garage sales, and HomeGoods clearance like everyone else suggested!

My one suggestion to splurge on is the knife; it will be your best your friend. I LOVE this affordable one from Amazon for $31. Or you can do what I did and buy a decent $10 one from the local Asian store. Both have lasted me many years with good maintenance. Get yourself a cheap knife sharpener and never let the knife get dull to the point of no return. Again, you can get more/better tools as you improve.

Last tip: All the basics you need to learn can be taught by YouTube.

Hope this helps!

u/cbroughton80 · 7 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

I considered myself a beginner not that long ago and three things I found helped a lot were;

  1. Quality tools. They just make the process easier and give you one less thing to worry about. I like America's Test Kitchen and The Wirecutter for reviews when I'm looking to buy something new. A chefs knife is easily #1 on the list. I have the 8" Victorinox chefs knife ATK recomemds and I love it. Amazon link.

  2. A cast iron pan once seasoned has let me do so many kinds of recipes with one pan to worry about. A 10" Lodge should do you fine.

  3. Trusted recipies. I really like America's Test Kitchen. They're researched, thorough, and trusted. Skip the paid website and get their books like The Best Simple Recipies from your library or used on Amazon. I'm not a fan of digital versions I find them hard to browse.
u/Somerandomlog · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

I personally would get the following way sooner if I was building my kitchen all over again.

Also if there is a place you can get bulk spices near by I would go there for your spices, because if you havent already noticed spices are pricey at your local megamart.

Lavatools Thermowand - Same form factor as the much more expensive thermopen but at 1/3 the price.

Lodge cast iron skillet - great for searing meats or as a good starting pan.

OXO Bench Scraper - Makes prep work much easier and safer as you don't use your knife to scrape your food off the cutting board.

Immersion Blenders - When you dont want to use your big blender or want to blend something in your pot or pan.

Stainless Steel Cookware - Has a little bit of a learning curve but is great after the fact.

Aeropress - Life is too short to make shitty coffee.

Edit: added a thermometer/spelling

u/russkhan · 18 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

How to wash a knife safely.

Don't get a set. Sets are designed to get you paying for knives you'll never use. I recommend starting with a chef's knife and a paring knife. The chef knife is your workhorse, you'll use it for almost everything. The paring knife is traditionally used for peeling and detail work, but just think of it as what you reach for when the job is too small for the chef knife. If you bake bread or buy unsliced loaves of it, you'll probably also want a bread knife.

Victorinox Fibrox knives are great knives for a new cook and an excellent value for the money. Here's their chef's knife, their paring knife, and their bread knife. That leaves you with enough money to buy a block and stay under $100. I like the wall mounted magnetic ones with a wooden face like this one myself, but there are plenty of other options if that's not what you want.

u/xilpaxim · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

I have a Victorinox Cutlery 9-Inch Wavy Edge Bread Knife and a Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef's and absolutely love them both. My brother, who is a chef, was impressed with both. He typically uses Global knives, which start at around $150 and go much higher.

With the chef's knife, I make sure to use a sharpener like this one every other time I pull it out (just rub it together 3 or 4 times each side) to keep the edge nice and straight. It actually can cut through tomatoes with minimal effort. Almost as good as the bread knife!

I don't really ever do precise work because I'm lazy so I've not found the need for a pairing knife. But I can see it being essential.

u/Patternsonpatterns · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

I'm a fan of Tim Ferriss, his "learn how to cook" book is something I consult like an encyclopedia.

Other than that, being a bachelor who actually likes shopping I'll wander around in a supermarket until I find something that catches my eye then just google a recipe for it. God bless the internet.

Also, having heard interviews with Alton Brown I trust that guy's knowledge. If I google a recipe and there's an AB one and ten other ones, I generally go for his.

u/kxley · 3 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

This book looks amazing--I'm about to purchase it myself!

I'd also recommend the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book. My mom gave me her old copy when I moved into my own apartment and it's saved me from disaster on more than one occasion. It covers just about every basic dish you could dream of and makes sure to outline every step. There are lots of nifty charts and resources (to name just a few: the back cover has a list of emergency substitutions, there's a section on selecting fresh fruits and vegetables, and the back of the meat chapter has an extensive list of cooking times!).

Also, if your future husband has the time and doesn't know how to cook much either, mayb try cooking some meals together! It could be a fun at-home date night and you'll both learn some things. :)

u/fesnying · 11 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Someone I know is a really good cook and an avid baker, so when I was lamenting my inability to cook (without recipes), he recommend three books: Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking,
The Laws of Cooking: And How to Break Them, and especially Craig Claiborne's Kitchen Primer. :) I only have the last one thus far, but it's great, and I'm hoping to get the others soon.

u/ChefM53 · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

you can use a potato masher but it will take a bit longer. have you looked at the stick blenders? they work great and don't take up much space and they are not overly expensive. I have this one

This actually does a better job sometimes than my large ($200) Ninja.

u/Jim3535 · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

This is one of the better affordable options. It always gets really good recommendations, especially value for the price. It's what I use.

Also, make sure to get a steel and learn how to use it.

u/dhamilt9 · 31 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Surprised no one has mentioned The Food Lab given how popular it is on Reddit. Not only is every recipe in it a certified banger, it also does a great job walking you through the scientific reasons behind each recipe, so in addition to the recipes in the book you gain a ton of skills and techniques applicable when coming up with your own recipes.

u/PotatoMurderer · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

> 9 inch chef's knife will get you through most of cooking. Get one of those plastic cutting boards. They last forever.

Or an 8 inch knife, which feels just about right in size for any person.
Victorinox Fibrox 8" chef's knife was the first decent knife I owned, and I still love it. It's affordable and the quality is really great.

Also, a wooden cutting board is better since plastic cutting boards can harbor bacteria.

u/NEWashDC · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

I LOVE How to Cook Everything: The Basics by Mark Bittman. He goes into not only WHAT to cook, but HOW to cook. Definitely worth it, in my opinion.

u/thejewishgun · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

This is a good list. I would add a few things to it. A cast iron pan, which can be found at goodwill for super cheap or For $25 from Amazon, and an enameled dutch oven . Which you can use in the oven or on the stovetop.

u/bangaroni · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

The bible at this point is The Food Lab which is more about food science and less about recipe how-tos. They also have a site where among recipes and other things they have a section dedicated to techniques. Long before I even heard about Food Lab I learned most from Chef John so you might want to give that a shot as well just make sure you start with some basic recipes so you don't get overwhelmed. Your can start by making a fancier steak 🙃

u/ohsnowy · 5 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

It's a very good place to start. In addition to that book, there is How to Cook Everything: The Basics, which does a fantastic job of covering method. It has a lot of pictures and straightforward instructions.

u/meteorknife · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

This is the link for the book. I would recommend it too. My biggest problem was that I knew how to make a handful of recipes, but I really didnt understand what was happening when I mixed things in a certain order or why/how the different variations of a dish exist (poached eggs vs over easy). This book fully explains their recipes and why its being cooked that way.

I would highly recommend it if you have an analytical mindset and trying to learn processes and rules of cooking.

u/unicornwhiskers · 4 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

I was thinking this too. I know that OP listed a crock pot as a no-no but I think it could be safe as long as you follow proper electric safety guidelines. They're designed to be left on for a long time so if you fall asleep while it's on, your house isn't going to burn down or anything. I could be wrong, but I don't think a crock pot could be any more dangerous in this situation than a microwave. If you leave chicken or pork in a crock pot for about 8 hours on low, when you take it out, it's so tender you can shred it with two forks so no knife needed to cut it. Add in veggies and then put some insta rice in the microwave and you have a meal.

I think you could also look for "College Dorm recipes" because most of the time in dorms, they don't allow anything other than a microwave. I remember people got pretty creative with recipes back when I lived in dorms. Here is my first link from Google.

I also have seen steamers that were designed to be used in a microwave. Like this. Also in the related product suggestions there is stuff like a microwave pressure cooker and rice cooker. Could those be helpful?

u/PrincessShorkness · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

I love Alton Brown for beginners and his book "I'm Just Here for the Food" is a wonderful place to start.

He has a few others that I've found helpful but this beautifully explains the basics for beginners and the science behind cooking.

u/n3wby_w3rk · 4 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Yes, do try it with the leftover bacon grease. It's even better in a cast iron pan - $25 dollars at Amazon

u/doxiepowder · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

How to Cook Everything The Basics: All You Need to Make Great Food--With 1,000 Photos

Also Binging with Babish on YouTube has a playlist of basics.

u/zombiheiler · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

Buy this book it has all the basics, including how to stock your kitchen, as well as teaching you how to cook, as opposed to just giving you recipes, which it also has a ton of.

Edit: typo

u/GooseCaboose · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners
u/ebeattie · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

This one works well for me for all frozen foods, as well as everything else.

u/ayakokiyomizu · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

You can use something like this:

or even just put them in a microwave bowl with a little water in the bottom (only about a tablespoon or two if they're frozen, because they will already have water in the form of ice crystals) and cover it loosely.

u/jcy · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

what do you think of this skillet? it has the highest amazon rating i've ever seen for 4000+ reviews

u/mcfewf · 9 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Take your dicing to the next level with one of these.

u/Tom_N_Haverford · 1 pointr/cookingforbeginners

I'd add The 4-Hour Chef to the sidepanel/FAQ section. Its written for beginners to cooking!

u/Finagles_Law · 6 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

How to Cook Everything: The Basics by Mark Bittman will walk you through absolutely everything from scratch, including what tools and spices you need and how to set up your kitchen.

u/soopuoos · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Try 'The Food Lab' by Kenji Lopez Alt. He details a lot of the science behind cooking methods and includes experiments he's done to compare them

u/jackson6644 · 27 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

No question: Victorinox Swiss Army 8-Inch Fibrox Straight Edge Chef's Knife

u/throwdemawaaay · 2 pointsr/cookingforbeginners

Don't buy one of those big sets in a block. You won't use most of it, and most of them that aren't expensive are really crappy.

This is your best value for a no nonsense Chef's knife: Get a pairing knife ( and a serrated ( and you're good to go for almost everything you'll do cooking. You can often find this brand on sale even locally, and the combo should come in under half your budget.