Use your oven for more than just baking and casserole making.
Ripen bananas by baking them for about 1 hour.
Prep a 50/50 pie with this easy foil trick.
From roasting to baking to broiling, your oven is a workhorse. But, this appliance is capable of taking even more heat in the kitchen! Here are 5 hot hacks that are sure to turn your dial.
TURN TORTILLAS INTO TACO SHELLS
Make homemade hard taco shells by draping small flour tortillas over the grates on your oven rack. Bake at 375°F for 7 to 10 minutes and you’ll have a warm batch of crunchy shells ready for a family taco bar or Cinco De Celebration.
QUICKLY RIPEN BANANAS FOR BAKING
Bake banana bread whenever the craving hits by using the oven to ripen yellow bananas. To brown your bunch, place unpeeled bananas in a single layer on a baker (TIP: Use parchment paper to avoid any mess). Bake at 300°F for 1 hour. Bananas will be black, shiny and perfectly sweet. Cool, then peel and use in any ripened banana recipe. To discover a new favorite, try baking a batch of Zucchini Banana Bread.
CREATE AN OVERSIZE PANINI PRESS
Skip the stovetop when you need a stack of grilled cheese. Instead, prepare several sandwiches at once by baking them between two cookie sheets. Heat oven to 400°F and place one cookie sheet in the oven to preheat. Meanwhile, layer prepared sandwiches on the second cookie sheet; slide into the oven and top with the preheated sheet. Bake 15 minutes or until bread is golden and cheese is melted.
BAKE A PERSONAL PIZZA ON AN INVERTED BAKING DISH
Create a personal-size pizza stone by using an inverted oval baker. Heat oven to 400°F with the inverted baker inside. Assemble a homemade pizza with crust and toppings of your choice on an 8-inch round piece of parchment paper. Carefully slide paper onto the heated baker. Bake 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted.
MAKE A 50/50 PIE WITH A FOIL DIVIDER
Can’t decide between cherry or apple pie? You don’t have to! Make one pie to satisfy everyone’s palate by creating a pie plate separator with molded foil. Prepare your favorite pie crust and press into a pie plate. Once the crust is in place, make the divider by taking a large piece of foil and folding it until you have a reinforced strip about 12×3 inches in size. Place the divider in the middle of the prepared pie plate, folding ends to rest securely against the crust with no gaps. Pour cherry filling into one side, stabilizing the foil with your hand. Pour apple filling into the other side. Once the fillings have been added, carefully pull the divider from the center. Top with second crust, lattice crust or streusel crumb topping. Bake as recipe directs.
GREEN IS A NO-GO. When ripening bananas, the oven trick above will turn yellow bananas soft and sweet. But it doesn’t work for green bananas, which keep their underripe flavor, regardless of oven browning.
YOUR TURN: What’s your family’s favorite oven hack? We’d love to hear! Share in the comments section below.