Category Archives: Basic Tips

Basic Cooking Techniques

You’re unique — and so is your kitchen. Learning to feed yourself means becoming familiar with the cooking styles that uniquely work for you. Here are some basic cooking techniques that you will use again and again, so check ‘em out and make ‘em your friends. Once you learn how to handle these fundamental techniques, you will be able to handle most recipes.  (Note: when cooking, you might need to adjust methods, utensils or stove temperatures to fit your particular situation.)

Baking is defined as cooking food in an oven using dry heat. It’s best for cookies,brownies, and slow-cooked meat dishes. Learn more about baking.

Boiling is putting food in water and bringing the temperature to a boil, which is approximately 212 degrees Fahrenheit or 100 degrees Celsius. While it’s generally used for pasta dishes, boiling is also for some root vegetables (like potatoes). Learn more about boiling.

Simmering is cooking liquids while keeping the temperature just below boiling points. It’s ideal for soups, sauces and chilis. Learn more about simmering.

Sautéing is cooking food in a moderate amount of oil or fat, quickly over high heat while stirring ingredients occasionally. In French, sauté means “jump,” because you don’t want your ingredients sitting too long in the hot pan. It’s great for lightly cooking vegetables and browning meats. Learn more about sautéing.

There are two basic kinds of frying: pan frying and deep frying. Pan frying is cooking food in a moderate amount of fat/oil, done quickly over medium/high heat. Deep frying is cooking food in a large amount of fat/oil so the oil totally surrounds the food, done quickly over medium/high heat. It’s a versatile technique, suitable for everything from meats to vegetables. Learn more about frying.

Marinating is letting food soak in a sauce to absorb/enhance flavor. Learn more about marinating.

Beating is to mix ingredients thoroughly with a spoon, whisk or beaters until smooth and well-combined. It’s great for scrambled eggs, crepes, or for mixing salads dressings and sauces. Learn more about beating.


Hey, college cooks! Wanna learn more cooking techniques?
Here are a few more worth being familiar with:

More Specific Cooking Techniques