11 Ways to Make Your Homemade Meals Taste Better Than Restaurant Food

Veal liver Berlin style, served with caramelized apple ring, potato mash and crispy bacon

AUTHOR: Louisa Eunice

Have you ever wanted to replicate food from your favorite takeout place? Making the same quality of food at home would be so much cheaper. While we can't compete with professional chefs, we can adapt a few tricks to help us turn our bland meals into deliciousness. Members of a popular online platform unveiled the best secrets that will help your meals outshine takeout every time:

1. Add Lots of Butter and Salt to Season Well

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Fat and salt aren't the enemy. Professional chefs understand that they are flavorful. An online user said, "There was a local restaurant I had never been to. But everyone raved about it. It was your bare steakhouse. I eventually ate there. It wasn't anything mind-blowing from a creativity standpoint, but it was apparent that people liked it so much. They season their food well. If you watch cooking on TV, chefs will probably add twice the amount of salt and butter I think most people add."

2. Balance Your Flavors

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As for richness when it comes to sauces, adding a tablespoon or so of cold butter to a warm or hot dressing will emulsify it and create a nice, glossy, rich finish. A sous chef advised, "Learning to balance competing flavors is also huge. I love the book Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. Recipes are a great place to start, but everyone has different preferences."

3. Have the Right Tools

Little kids watching their mother bake cookies in oven
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Restaurants use top-notch tools to prepare their food. With the right equipment, their food will taste much better. For instance, pizza in a pizza oven will come out well-made compared to pizza you cook by rolling the dough in your hands and placing it in a moderately warm oven. Invest in a few reliable and multipurpose kitchen gadgets, and they'll change your cooking game.

4. Use Top-notch Ingredients

Open tin of chopped tomatoes with whole fresh unfocused tomatoes behind. Wood surface.
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Be careful with the "fresh" ingredients. Unless they're only open in the summer, every pizza place worldwide uses canned tomatoes. It could be home-grown, home-canned, or commercial. The reason is that ripe tomatoes spoil quickly, so anything imported from far away during the off-season is picked unripe to survive shipping and sitting in the store. Meanwhile, at least, canned tomatoes from decent producers are canned when ripe and at their peaks.

5. Imitate a Professional Chef

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The best takeout places have professional chefs as cooks. They have high-end culinary knowledge you don't possess, and they use it to make fantastic food. So they have an ace over you. However, you can still watch YouTube tutorials, see these chefs in action, and try to pick up a few valuable skills that will help you stand out in the kitchen.

6. Taste, Taste, Taste!

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Refrain from assuming that the recipe will work. Even when you measure the ingredients to a T, tasting the food as you cook is a significant part of making your food taste delicious. It will help you know where it's lacking and how to adjust the seasoning to suit the perfect taste.

7. Be Prepared

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Chefs say, "Mise en place," meaning everything in its place. Think of what you're cooking and prepare all the ingredients beforehand. "What happens is when you don't have everything we need in place while cooking, you tend to skip the ingredients, and the result is a meal that's not as flavorful," a home cook shared. Have everything in place so you're not missing a beat.

8. Don’t Toss the Bones and Vegetable Scrap

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The word "bones" goes hand in hand with " homemade stock." It's the key to the best stews and soups. Save your bones and keep them in your freezer until you're ready to get your stock going. Start with the stock and finish off the meal with the right seasonings.

9. Don’t Overcook the Veggies

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Perfectly cooked vegetables are delicious and appealing to the eyes. Takeout spots perfect their vegetables, drawing you to their tasty "sides" whenever you order. But you can make the same level of tastiness at home. Toss them in butter, season, and leave them crispy to your liking.

10. Don't Forget the Sauce

mole poblano is sauce with chicken mexican traditional food in Mexico Latin America
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I started making homemade sauces because they were the perfect finish to my takeout dish, and my meals at home felt incomplete without the proper sauces. You're spoilt for choice when it comes to options. Have fun with tamarind, chimichurri, tomatoes, and much more.

11. Don't Leave Flavor Behind

Veal liver Berlin style, served with caramelized apple ring, potato mash and crispy bacon
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My grandma always had the best gravy-making secrets. She always paid attention to deglazing. She said, remember the caramelized bits on your pan's bottom when you cook your meal. Scrap them up, and they'll add the much-needed flavor.

Source: Reddit.

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