Tips for Cooking in Small Spaces

Tips for Cooking in Small Spaces

Cooking in small spaces doesn’t have to be scary if you’re equipped with the right information! Just about all of us have had at least one small apartment in our days, so the stress is likely familiar, but Sarah has some great tips to help keep you happy while you work. Let’s see if she can squeeze us in and give us a lesson?

Greetings, entertainers! I have designed the kitchen of my dreams multiple times, revising as my tastes change. It always has a dishwasher, lots of counter space, big, sunny windows, and a giant kitchen island. I have never had any of those things, but a girl can dream! Since I’m used to cooking in small spaces, I thought I’d share my tips today! It doesn’t take a gigantic, sunny kitchen to make food with big flavors.

Dedicate Space

When you’re short on counter space, the first thing to do is dedicate space for cooking and prep. I have a beautiful wooden cutting board that I try to keep clear, since that’s where I chop vegetables. This has necessitated me prioritizing my countertop space, and has led to me keeping small appliances tucked away unless I’m actively using them. My stand mixer goes in the pantry, my food processor goes in a drawer, and my coffee bean grinder is stowed away, too. I also make sure that my cutting board is clean, because that removes another barrier to me getting down to business.

One-Pot Wonders

My favorite recipes have fewer steps to prep, and with a small stove and sink, I have learned to love things I can make with one pan on the stove. These recipes usually involve browning meat, adding vegetables that cook quickly, and then adding liquids or tomato paste to make a sauce. After you’ve eaten and put leftovers away, you only have one pot to clean, so I’m done cleaning up before my hands get pruny. If you want more elements in your meal, roast vegetables in the oven while your main dish cooks on the stovetop. This gives you more flavors, and more crunch, without making a huge mess, or requiring super specific timing.

Clean Right Away

The least fun part of cooking a great meal is cleaning up (obviously the most fun part is eating it!). When cooking in small spaces, dishes pile up more easily in the sink and stove. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when it feels like the kitchen is full of dirty dishes. Commit to cleaning measuring cups as you use them, and clean knives or any prep dishes as your meal cooks. Try to get your pans clean just after they’ve cooled, so any residual gunk doesn’t get crusty, which means more scrubbing.

Meal Prep

All hail the slow cooker! Planning meals ahead of time has been proven to lower your grocery bills and reduce stress throughout the week. This can be as easy as planning to cook two big meals on Sunday afternoons so you’ll have leftovers all week, or investing in a big slow cooker for roasts, soups, and more!

Slow cookers are a great solution for cooking in small spaces because you assemble and cook ingredients all in the same pot!

So if you have a busy social life after work during the week, or are just too tired to chop veggies and make sure the chicken is done, try a slow cooker meal to have something to look forward to when you get home.

Strategize

If you have an ambitious cooking adventure in mind, set yourself up for success by planning ahead. If you want to make macarons, plan where the cookies will cool while you mix up the filling. Christmas cookies? Maybe set up a small card table for a decorating station so you have enough room for multiple batches to go into the oven, cool, and be ready for frosting!

If you’re adjusting to a new small space, don’t feel discouraged or limited by having less counter space than the kitchen of your dreams. By making the most of the space you have, you’ll feel more organized and up for cooking in small spaces!

Outfit Your Restaurant or Commercial Kitchen with Butcher Block Co.

Outfit Your Restaurant or Commercial Kitchen with Butcher Block Co.

Do you run a restaurant or commercial kitchen? Let Butcher Block Co. help outfit your space with the beautiful and high quality products of John Boos & Co. Butcher Block Co. has grown into the leading online distributor of John Boos products, and while we love our residential clients, we are also experts at catering to commercial operations like restaurants and bakeries. You may be surprised at the variety of products offered to keep your commercial kitchen or restaurant running smoothly!

One of the most important areas in your commercial kitchen is your prep space. Depending on the product you’re putting out, you may need several smaller prep tables, a long and narrow work table, a huge and hefty baker’s table, or a combination of all of the above. We’ve got you covered with Boos Maple-top work tables ranging from 24” X 36” up to 60” X 168”, available in a variety of standard sizes or customized to your specific needs. You can upgrade your standard steel base by adding casters, shelves, drawers, and bin stops. Poly-top tables are perfect for particularly messy jobs, as the lighter weight, removable tops are easy to clean and sanitize. You will most likely need some stainless steel prep tables in your arsenal as well. Stainless steel adds low-maintenance function that is perfect for plating or packing. Just like the Maple-top tables, these can be customized with shelves, drawers, even cabinets, to accommodate your needs. And don’t forget your cutting boards and chopping blocks! With a variety of NSF certified boards to choose from, there is a chopping block for every job in your kitchen.

REstaurant Commercial Kitchen

Once you have all that delicious food made, it’s time to clean up! Having the right equipment for cleanup is essential for efficiency. John Boos stainless steel sinks are available with one to four bowls depending on your needs. Drainboards are available on neither, either, or both ends. Whether you run a bakery, a restaurant, or a commercial production kitchen, we have the John Boos NSF certified sink to meet your needs.

Restaurant Commercial Kitchen

If you’re running a restaurant, it is essential that your dining area is comfortable and inviting. With Boos butcher block dining tables, you get the versatility to create a classic, modern, or rustic space that fits perfectly with the aesthetic of your food. With our residential clients, we have seen butcher block implemented in high-end modern homes, cozy mountain escapes, in-home taverns, and as the centerpiece of every variation of the standard family home. It is no different in a restaurant dining room – butcher block is a gorgeous and functional addition that is appreciated by all. Boos dining tables are available in a variety of wood types with the option of staining to your specifications. Our Boos dining tops come in a variety of shapes, as well, allowing you to utilize your dining space to its fullest potential. Contact us for custom sizing or shapes. Traditional black metal bases are also available.

Restaurant Commercial Kitchen

 

If you have any questions about any of our commercial grade John Boos products, feel free to give us a call at 1-877-845-5597 or send an email to [email protected] We’re here to help you set up your commercial space with the best available products.