Is your kitchen set up to help you lose weight? Do you use the most effective diet hacks for weight loss? If you don’t know the answer, then the answer is probably “no.” So why not make some quick and easy changes in your kitchen to make cooking easier and weight loss more simple?
Click through this list to see how many of these quick and easy kitchen hacks you can include in your daily routine. Use them to save time, save money, and slim down at the same time.11
Use Scoops to Eat Correct Portions
One of the biggest mistakes made by dieters is to eat too much of certain foods. For example, most of us don’t actually measure a single serving of cereal, we just pour cereal into a bowl. Then we add a single serving of cereal to our food journal – when in fact we’ve probably eaten two to three times that amount.
To eat the correct portions of cereals and grains, keep single serving scoops inside boxes of cereal, rice, oatmeal, and other foods. I like to keep grains and cereals in clear plastic tubs so that the scoops are easy to see, but you can also just throw a scoop into the box that came from the store.
First, check the nutrition facts label to determine the correct size of a single serving, then get a measuring cup that matches that amount. If you don’t want to spend extra money on measuring cups, use a clean plastic yogurt cup with a marking for the correct serving size.2
Keep Berries Dry
Avoid high-sugar snacks and eat diet-friendly berries instead. According to some diet experts, raspberries are one of the best diet-boosting foods. But raspberries also tend to get moldy quickly, so some budget-conscious eaters avoid buying them altogether. So how do you keep berries fresh?
When you buy fresh berries, don’t rinse them right away. Put them immediately into the refrigerator to keep them dry. Mold is less likely to form in a dry environment. When you’re ready to add berries to your healthy breakfast or healthy snack, rinse them quickly and pat them dry with a paper towel.
Create a Healthy Food Zone
How often do you visit the refrigerator to look for a snack when you’re not really hungry? If you’re like most people, you do it too often, especially in the evening. There are ways to stop eating at night, but you can also just organize your refrigerator for weight loss.
There’s no need for a major overhaul. This kitchen hack takes five minutes or less. Simply move the high-calorie foods to the back of the fridge and clean out one shelf near the front for diet-friendly snacks. Then fill this area with single-serving containers of low-calorie foods. That way you’ll see them first when you open the refrigerator door.
If you live with people who aren’t trying to lose weight, ask them to respect your “healthy food zone” so that you always have smart snack options available.4
Use a Digital Scale
If you are serious about losing weight, then you should own and use a digital scale. Without it, you’re not likely to get accurate portion sizes when you serve yourself food. It’s also unlikely that you will record calories correctly when you log them into your food journal.
Most people keep their scale in a cabinet. But smart dieters keep it on the counter so that it is visible and you are reminded to use it often. Put a small lightweight plastic container on top so you can quickly measure things like grains, cereals, and ingredients for recipes. Make sure you zero out the scale before you measure.How to Curb Your Portion Sizes.
Make Snack Packs
Healthy snacking is essential if you want to lose weight.2 This diet hack takes a little extra time in the beginning but saves both time and money in the long run. It will also help you keep your calorie count in control to lose weight faster.
Instead of buying those expensive (and often unhealthy) snack packs at the store, make your own 100-calorie snack packs at home with healthy foods you love. Get all of the ingredients when you do your weekly grocery shopping, then prepare a week’s worth of healthy snacks all at once.
Keep your healthy snack packs on the healthy food shelf that you created in the refrigerator or place them in the front of your cupboard so they are the first thing you see when you’re hungry.6
Stock Up on Mushrooms
If you like to eat savory foods with ground meat, you’ll love this simple kitchen tip. You can use mushrooms to double your ground meat and cut calories when you cook.
Keep finely diced mushrooms in the refrigerator. When you cook meat, add the same amount of mushrooms to double the amount that you cook. For example, if you cook one cup of ground beef, add one cup of finely chopped mushrooms to the pan with the meat. After cooking the mixture, put aside half of the mixture to freeze and use at a later date.
And here’s a fun fact: some celebs use mushrooms to slim down, so you can even brag to your friends that you’re on a celebrity diet.
Reduce Calories With Stock
Smart cooks and savvy dieters know this tried-and-true kitchen hack to lose weight. You can reduce calories when you saute meat or vegetables by using stock instead of oil.
You’ll find chicken stock in most grocery stores, but you can use vegetable stock or any flavor you prefer. Use a non-stick pan and instead of adding oil, simply warm up a small amount of stock and add the food you want to cook. If you don’t saute often, freeze small amounts of stock in ice cube trays so that you always have some on hand to use.
You can also saute onions, garlic, and spinach for egg-white omelets. The veggies absorb plenty of flavor without any added fat or calories.
Bananas are the basis for many weight loss smoothie recipes. But bananas ripen and go bad quickly and many recipes only use a half banana to keep the calorie count in control. So how do you keep bananas on hand without wasting all those extra halves? You can flash-freeze bananas to save time and money.
To freeze the bananas, peel 5-7 ripe bananas and cut them in half. Then take the halves and lay them out on a cookie tray. Place the entire tray in the freezer for about an hour. Make sure the tray stays flat so the bananas don’t roll together. Remove the tray and throw the bananas into a freezer bag and place the bag back in the freezer.
The bananas won’t stick together in the bag and you’ll always have a fresh banana ready for your recipe.Smart Blender Ideas and Recipes
Use Salad Plates to Eat Less
If you want to eat less at mealtime, the trick may be to use smaller plates. Several research studies have found that when dieters use smaller plates, they take smaller portions of food and eat less overall.3
Is this a surefire way to lose weight? No. Some other studies have found no connection between plate size and portion size. But why not give it a try? Use your salad plates instead of dinner plates at mealtime to see if you eat less. At the very worst, you’ll have a smaller dish to wash.10
Freeze Raw Spinach
Many chefs freeze cooked spinach. You’ve probably seen frozen cooked spinach in the freezer section of the grocery store. But did you know that you can freeze raw spinach? Not only does it freeze well, but it actually works better in green weight-loss smoothies.
Buy large cellophane bags of spinach to use in egg-white omelets and in healthy smoothie recipes (along with flash-frozen bananas). Then secure the bag with a rubber band and throw the whole bag into the freezer.
The spinach leaves freeze separately so it’s easy to grab the exact amount that you need when you’re ready to use the spinach. Then it’s easy to throw the spinach into a saute pan or into smoothie recipes and you save money by not wasting food.6 Reasons to Add Green Smoothies to Your Diet
Remove Eggshells With No Mess
Smart dieters try to get enough protein in their diets to lose weight. If you keep a bowl of hard-boiled eggs in your refrigerator, eating the right amount of protein each day is easy. But peeling those eggs can be a pain.
To remove eggshells with no mess or hassle, add baking soda or vinegar to the water when you boil the eggs. And be sure to plunge the eggs into a pot of ice water when they are done cooking. These two tips should make it easier to remove the shells.
For diet-friendly egg snack ideas, remove the yolk of a hard-boiled egg and add low-calorie hummus for a quick and savory snack. You can also chop egg white and add it to cottage cheese to boost the protein value, or add an egg to salads or sandwiches.12
Drink Diet-Friendly Wine Portions
Many cooks like to drink wine when they prepare dinner. The problem is that it is easy to drink too much wine when you’re not paying attention. A single serving of wine is only five ounces and many wine glasses have room for twice that amount of wine.
Stylish wine glasses by brands like Livliga®4 solve that problem. The glasses have an elegant design that shows you where to fill the glass for a 4- or 6-ounce pour. The glasses come in sets of four and sell for about $50.
Need a cheaper option? You can also save the free wine glass you’re given on your next wine tour. Most wineries give you a glass to take home when you do a tasting. The glasses are usually smaller and have text on the front of the bowl. You can use the markings to note where a single serving of wine should be poured.
A Word From Verywell
All of these kitchen hacks are designed to help you have healthy, low-calorie foods available at all times so that you can make the best decisions to lose weight. But remember that weight loss only happens when you create the right balance of calories in and calories out.
Organize your kitchen with these simple tips, then eat better and exercise daily to get the weight loss results you deserve.