The Absolute Best Way to Grill Vegetables

In Absolute Best Tests, Ella Quittner destroys the sanctity of her home kitchen in the name of the truth. She’s boiled dozens of eggs, mashed a concerning number of potatoes, and seared more Porterhouse steaks than she cares to recall. Today, she tackl…

In Absolute Best Tests, Ella Quittner destroys the sanctity of her home kitchen in the name of the truth. She's boiled dozens of eggs, mashed a concerning number of potatoes, and seared more Porterhouse steaks than she cares to recall. Today, she tackles cheeseburgers.


If I’m not manning the grill, I am standing right next to it, completely transfixed. (Just try to show me your vacation pics, I dare you.) Cooking over an open fire has always fascinated me, perhaps because I grew up with a father who quit organized religion to worship his Big Green Egg, or perhaps because a properly charred bite of pork belly is a universally transcendental experience. And unlike a neighbor with a story to tell me about his achilles tendon, the grill never ceases to run out of ways to surprise me at a cookout.

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5 Best Tahini Substitutes Because Oops, I’m Out Again

At home, I fly through tahini at an alarming rate, adding it to almost everything I make. I have a gift (though some may say it’s a curse) for making the creamy, toasty Middle Eastern staple disappear, spreading it on toast with honey and cinnamon, swi…

At home, I fly through tahini at an alarming rate, adding it to almost everything I make. I have a gift (though some may say it’s a curse) for making the creamy, toasty Middle Eastern staple disappear, spreading it on toast with honey and cinnamon, swirling it into brownie batter, or blending it with garlic and lemon to make a sauce. With this gift comes a major consequence: I’m often out of tahini (cue dramatic music). Lucky for all of us, we’ve done our research and found the best tahini substitutes. Before you give up on making a tahini-forward recipe like hummus, keep reading—for all you know, a substitute might be stocked in your kitchen, ready to save the day.


Our Best Tahini Substitutes

Cashew Butter

Of all the nut butters, cashew butter is your best bet for replacing tahini, (FWIW: we do love almond butter, too). The smooth consistency and subtly bitter nuttiness of cashew butter are reminiscent of tahini, which make it a seamless substitute; try it out in these no-butter chocolate chip cookies for a nutty twist. Keep in mind that nut butters can get expensive and obviously aren’t a safe substitute if you’re allergic. Avoid peanut butter when searching for a tahini substitute; as much as we love peanut butter, its thick texture and distinctive flavor aren’t the best at mimicking the flavor and consistency of tahini.

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How to Freeze Bananas So They Don’t Totally & Completely Rot

It’s a tale as old as time: you buy a bunch of bananas at the grocery store with every intention to eat them with breakfast or lunch daily for the next five days, but they inevitably go bad before you get the chance. Banana bread is a great way to use …

It’s a tale as old as time: you buy a bunch of bananas at the grocery store with every intention to eat them with breakfast or lunch daily for the next five days, but they inevitably go bad before you get the chance. Banana bread is a great way to use up overripe bananas (as we all know from our quarantine days), but sometimes you can’t find the time to bake a loaf before they turn rotten. Like avocados, it’s tricky to track the ripeness of bananas, which leads to food waste. Enter: freezing bananas. Here’s the thing: freezing and thawing bananas leads to somewhat mushy fruit, so you won’t want to eat them as-is, which means they’re perfect for baking and blending. With this brilliant kitchen tip, you’ll never waste a bunch of bananas and will you’ll them on deck when a banana bread craving strikes. (Sounds like a win-win to us!)

How to Freeze Whole Bananas

Technically, you can freeze unpeeled bananas, but we don’t recommend it; they’ll stick together more than their peeled counterparts. To freeze whole bananas, peel them completely, line them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, and put them in the freezer for at least 1-2 hours. Once frozen, transfer the bananas to an airtight, freezer-safe plastic bag or container, and place them back in the freezer.

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The Best Non-Alcoholic Spritzes to Buy or Make at Home

No drink so readily evokes the carefree, al fresco everything feeling of summer like the spritz. The traditional Italian cocktail is bitter and bubbly, with just enough sweet and tart flavors for balance, best served over ice in a balloon glass so big …

No drink so readily evokes the carefree, al fresco everything feeling of summer like the spritz. The traditional Italian cocktail is bitter and bubbly, with just enough sweet and tart flavors for balance, best served over ice in a balloon glass so big it goes past absurd into downright glamorous. Those who don’t want to drink alcohol don’t have to be left out of la dolce vita either, since there are plenty of options available for a zero proof spritz, from the classic Aperol or Campari flavor profile to more unusual combinations of fruits, herbs, spices, and, of course, bitters.

To make a spritz, the traditional ratio is two parts bitter aperitif, three parts sparkling white wine, and one part sparkling water, in that order. You want to make sure that the aperitif goes in first in order to preserve the bubbles. A spritz is built in the glass over ice, so you won’t need any fancy barware—you don’t even need to stir it.

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The Absolute Best Way to Marinate Chicken

In Absolute Best Tests, Ella Quittner destroys the sanctity of her home kitchen in the name of the truth. She’s boiled dozens of eggs, mashed a concerning number of potatoes, and seared more Porterhouse steaks than she cares to recall. Today, she tackl…

In Absolute Best Tests, Ella Quittner destroys the sanctity of her home kitchen in the name of the truth. She's boiled dozens of eggs, mashed a concerning number of potatoes, and seared more Porterhouse steaks than she cares to recall. Today, she tackles marinated chicken.


I used to think that marinades were pointless. Or, more accurately, I wasn’t really sure what they did for flavor—blame the honey mustard craze of my youth. I wasn’t sure how or why I might employ one to lock in moisture when I could simply dry brine. So more often than not, I skipped them.

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How to Improvise a Cocktail, Rick Martinez Style

Whether he’s pairing coconut shrimp with a pineapple-habanero salsa or drizzling fried chicken with hot honey, Resident Rick Martinez is all about sweet heat—after all, that is the name of his show. In the latest episode, our host faces a somewhat daun…

Whether he’s pairing coconut shrimp with a pineapple-habanero salsa or drizzling fried chicken with hot honey, Resident Rick Martinez is all about sweet heat—after all, that is the name of his show. In the latest episode, our host faces a somewhat daunting task: Using ingredients from the local market, Martinez must improvise three spicy summer drinks. To complicate things even further? He has to make them in the comfort of his sparsely equipped AirBnB—meaning no fancy barware or tools allowed.

So, how did the Mi Cocina author approach this on-the-fly assignment? “One of my favorite ways to cook is to go to the market and let the market tell me what it wants me to make,” he explains in the video. “I don’t want to follow a recipe to make a drink.”

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A Tangy-Sweet Goat Cheese Frosting for All Your Favorite Bakes

We’ve teamed up with Vermont Creamery to share a customizable formula for fluffy, tangy-sweet frosting using their lineup of award-winning Goat Cheese Log flavors. When mixed with powdered sugar and a pinch of salt, these smooth, fresh-tasting goat che…

We've teamed up with Vermont Creamery to share a customizable formula for fluffy, tangy-sweet frosting using their lineup of award-winning Goat Cheese Log flavors. When mixed with powdered sugar and a pinch of salt, these smooth, fresh-tasting goat cheeses become your dessert’s ultimate plus-one—perfect for frosting cakes of all kinds.


By now it’s no secret that goat cheese is so much more than just a charcuterie board staple; it works wonders in savory dishes and even baked goods, like these salty-sweet snacking cookies and this flaky pastry for berry galettes. But I’ll admit that goat cheese frosting, an idea I first came across in Emma Laperruque’s Big Little Recipes cookbook, took me by surprise—when I tried it myself, I realized I had definitely been missing out. Goat cheese frosting’s tangy, distinct flavor adds a pizzaz and oomph that buttercream and cream cheese frosting lack. Plus, its smooth, creamy texture is perfect for spreading on cake.

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How to Grill the Juiciest-Ever Chicken

We’ve reached the time of year when we’re making every excuse to spend time outside and away from hot kitchens. In my family, summer dinners often revolve around grilled chicken thighs marinated in a combination of herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil. Gr…

We’ve reached the time of year when we’re making every excuse to spend time outside and away from hot kitchens. In my family, summer dinners often revolve around grilled chicken thighs marinated in a combination of herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil. Grilled chicken is a great way to feed family and friends something nourishing (and delicious!) without spending too much time hovering over a hot stove, which we’re all about.

Out with the bland chicken of your nightmares, and in with juicy, flavorful breasts and thighs. From the best cuts to buy for summer grilling to marinade recommendations to how to make sure your chicken is actually done, here are your best tips for grilling chicken.

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Eggs & Mayo Is a Way Underrated French Bistro Dish

If you speak French, oeufs-mayo holds no secrets for you: This portmanteau of an appetizer is no more complicated than uniting hard-boiled eggs and mayonnaise— the former halved, the latter dolloped generously on top. 

“I always think of the tradition…

If you speak French, oeufs-mayo holds no secrets for you: This portmanteau of an appetizer is no more complicated than uniting hard-boiled eggs and mayonnaise— the former halved, the latter dolloped generously on top. 

“I always think of the traditional dish with the egg cut in half, from top to bottom, with the yolk on the plate and the mayo coating the white of the egg,” says author Dorie Greenspan. “But when I was at Le Paul Bert, it was upside down. I asked somebody why, and they said, ‘Because the yolk sticks to the plate!’” 

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Do I Really Need to Bake With Cake Flour?

There’s something soothing about following directions for baked goods, knowing that the final product will turn out just right if you abide by the precise measurements. I love to bake everything from elaborate birthday cakes to buttery biscuits to fudg…

There’s something soothing about following directions for baked goods, knowing that the final product will turn out just right if you abide by the precise measurements. I love to bake everything from elaborate birthday cakes to buttery biscuits to fudgy brownies, but sometimes I get a little lazy when it comes to using the appropriate ingredients (who doesn’t?). For example, when I see that a recipe calls for cake flour instead of all-purpose flour, I tend to turn my cheek and proceed with all-purpose, not wanting to make a last-minute run to the store. While the swap turns out okay, the final product is never quite as fluffy and light as it should be.

I did some digging to find out: is it really worth buying cake flour in addition to AP flour? What makes cake flour necessary for certain baked goods? And what’s the difference between all-purpose flour and cake flour, anyway?

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