Here are some extremely easy cheffy hacks for you to get your teeth into. Why not give them a go?

Image: 16 recipe hacks for the less adventurous cooks out there

jules/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: stone-soup

Picture the scene: it’s Wednesday evening, you’ve had a long day at work and you’re on autopilot preparing your jacket potato. Then out of nowhere, inspiration strikes. How about adding a quick spicy rub to the skin with a few store cupboard spices before putting it in the oven? Pretty crazy, huh? Give these a go... 


1. Soup

You can give an elegant and extra creamy finish to any soup by swirling a little fresh cream into it and sprinkling it with some chopped fresh parsley.


Shanna S/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: pineappleandcoconut


2. Oven chips

Before baking, give the chips a misting of olive oil spray and a sprinkling of paprika.

Oven chips

Keith McDuffee/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: gudlyf


3. Roast chicken

Sprinkle the oiled or buttered chicken with basic mixed herbs before roasting for an aromatic result.

3. Roast chicken

jules/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: stone-soup


4. Jacket potatoes

Try coating the oiled skins with a ready-made spicy rub before baking. You can make your own rub by mixing together paprika, salt and pepper, coriander, onion powder and garlic powder. Experiment with different combinations: rubs are great on meat, chicken or fish, too.

Jacket Potato

Norihiro Kataoka/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: noriqnub


5. Fish fingers

Turn fish fingers into a posh lunch by serving them in crusty bread with tartare sauce and ketchup for a very trendy sandwich.

Fish Finger

Michael Pham/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: michaelphams


6. Pizza

Drizzle your choice of olive oil over pizza before baking for a more authentic pizzeria finish.


Ryan Hyde/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: breatheindigital


7. Mashed potato

Stir in a handful of grated cheddar, a drizzle of olive oil or a spoonful of Dijon mustard to change it up a little.


8. Burgers

Top burgers with a slice of roquefort or other blue cheese for extra tang.


Daniel Zemans/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: 28655296@N05


9. Salad

Sprinkle salad with a handful of sesame seeds or a bag of croutons just before serving for added texture and crunch.


10. Rice

Add a little desiccated coconut and some lime zest rice to serve with curry.


Deborah Austin/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: littledebbie11


11. Rice pudding

Instead of the traditional jam, liven up rice pudding with some squeezy chocolate sauce or maple syrup.

Rice pudding

rpavich/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: rpavich


12. Iced cupcakes

Just before serving, add a new dimension to iced cupcakes by sprinkling them with popping candy.


Steve Snodgrass/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: stevensnodgrass


13. Custard

Add a dollop of ready-made caramel from a tin to a carton ready-to-eat custard to go with sponge puddings, apple pie or crumble.


Via: Benjah-bmm27/


14. Trifle

Pretty up a standard trifle with a sprinkling strawberries or raspberries.


15. Ice cream

Give vanilla, chocolate or coffee ice cream a very posh lift with a drizzle of amaretto liqueur, or a shot of espresso coffee and some crushed amaretti biscuits.

Ice Cream

jen/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: blu_pineappl3


16. Apple crumble

Add a handful of crushed, mixed nuts to the crumble topping for an extra dimension of flavour and crunch.