20 Cooking Myths Debunked by Experts

I’ve spent countless hours in the kitchen and even more time going down rabbit holes of research, talking to experts, and testing these myths myself. Ready to have your culinary beliefs shattered? Here are 20 cooking myths that need to be debunked, once and for all.

1. Myth: You Need to Use Fresh Herbs All the Time

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Fact: Fresh herbs are great, but dried herbs work perfectly in most recipes. Honestly, who has the time or money to always buy fresh? Dried herbs last longer and pack just as much flavor.

2. Myth: Searing Meat Seals in Juices

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Fact: Searing meat does not seal in juices; it just creates a tasty crust. Your meat won’t be any juicier just because you gave it a good sear. It’s all about that delicious Maillard reaction.

3. Myth: You Should Always Preheat Your Oven

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Fact: Preheating is only necessary for some recipes. Do you think your grandma preheated her wood-fired oven? Exactly. Just start baking, and adjust as needed.

4. Myth: Adding Oil to Pasta Water Prevents Sticking

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Fact: Oil does nothing to keep pasta from sticking; it just makes your pasta slippery and prevents sauce from sticking. Stir your pasta instead. It’s simple and it works.

5. Myth: Rinsing Raw Chicken Removes Bacteria

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Fact: Rinsing chicken just spreads bacteria around your sink. Cooking it to the proper temperature kills the bacteria. Stop making your kitchen a salmonella playground.

6. Myth: Microwaves Zap Nutrients

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Fact: Microwaving can actually preserve nutrients better than boiling or frying. Your microwave isn’t an evil radiation box—it’s just a convenient way to heat up food.

7. Myth: Alcohol Completely Cooks Out of Food

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Fact: Not all the alcohol evaporates during cooking. Depending on the cooking time and method, up to 85% of the alcohol can remain. So yes, your boozy dessert can still get you a bit tipsy.

8. Myth: Salt Makes Water Boil Faster

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Fact: Adding salt to water doesn’t make it boil faster. It just makes your food taste better. Chemistry isn’t magic, folks.

9. Myth: You Need Expensive Knives

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Fact: A good-quality, affordable knife works just as well as those pricey ones. It’s not the cost of the knife; it’s how you use it (and how often you sharpen it).

10. Myth: Wooden Cutting Boards Are Unsafe

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Fact: Wooden cutting boards are perfectly safe if properly maintained. They’re actually more hygienic than plastic ones because they’re less likely to develop deep grooves that harbor bacteria.

11. Myth: You Can’t Overwork Biscuit Dough

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Fact: Overworking biscuit dough makes it tough. Less is more. Treat that dough like your fragile ego—handle it gently.

12. Myth: More Yeast Means Faster Rising Dough

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Fact: More yeast can lead to off flavors and a denser texture. Patience, my friend. Let the yeast do its thing.

13. Myth: Butter Should Be Refrigerated

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Fact: Butter can be left out at room temperature for up to a week. It’s not going to go bad, and it’s much easier to spread.

14. Myth: Nonstick Pans Last Forever

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Fact: Nonstick pans lose their magic over time. Treat them nicely, but accept that you’ll need to replace them every few years.

15. Myth: Cooking on High Heat is Always Best

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Fact: High heat isn’t always the answer. Sometimes, low and slow wins the race. Patience, again, is key.

16. Myth: You Shouldn’t Cook with Olive Oil

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Fact: Olive oil is fine for cooking at medium-high temperatures. It’s not just for salad dressing, people.

17. Myth: Baking Soda and Baking Powder Are Interchangeable

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Fact: They are not the same and using one in place of the other can ruin your recipe. They serve different purposes, so learn them and use them correctly.

18. Myth: Food Should Be Room Temperature Before Cooking

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Fact: Most of the time, this is unnecessary. Cooking straight from the fridge is usually fine and saves time.

19. Myth: Cast Iron Pans are Hard to Maintain

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Fact: Cast iron pans are tough and easy to care for. A little oil and proper cleaning go a long way. They’re not as high maintenance as your last relationship.

20. Myth: All Veggies Need to Be Cooked

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Fact: Some vegetables are just better raw. Cooking can destroy certain nutrients. So sometimes, it’s best to keep it fresh and crunchy.

Consider Yourselves Debunked

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I hope you’re ready to rethink everything you thought you knew about cooking. Which myth surprised you the most? Time to head back to the kitchen and try these out for yourself!

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In the quest for a longer life, certain foods can make a big difference. From everyday staples to exotic finds, these options span various budgets and might surprise you. Who knew the secret to longevity could be right in your pantry or at the grocery store? 18 Must-Eat Foods for a Longer Life

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For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.

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