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17 Very Doable Food Tips, Tricks, And Habits That I First Noticed At Restaurants (But Now Copy At Home In My Own Kitchen)

I'm often blown away by how pro chefs can make such a basic dish (like pasta) taste so delicious. And there's one not-so-secret ingredient that can explain this, at least in part...

I'm Hannah, and as much as I enjoy cooking at home and trying new recipes, I really love eating at restaurants. I realize that it's a luxury, but it's one that I intentionally plan for, save up for, and get so much genuine satisfaction out of. Going out to dinner on a Friday night is one of the greatest joys after a long week of cooking dinner at home.

A bar with an open kitchen behind it.

So, here are some of the best tips I've learned from restaurant menus and eating out that I've tried to adopt in my own home cooking.

A bunch of dips and pita at a restaurant.

1. Never underestimate the power of high-quality olive oil.

A dish with olive oil

2. Cook with a few high-quality ingredients.

A plate of pasta.

3. Play around with different textures.

Different fish crudo on a plate.

4. Pay attention to the interplay of salt, heat, fat, and acid.

A Mexican tlayuda with vegetables on top.

5. Give simple roast chicken a simple flavor boost.

6. And give salmon a super crispy skin.

Crispy skinned salmon.

7. Embrace the power of fancy toast.

A piece of sourdough topped with tuna tartare.

8. Do the extra legwork for homemade croutons.

Homemade croutons.

9. Don't fear anchovies!!

Different colorful vegetables and bagna cauda dip.

10. And salad dressing, too.

A person making homemade salad dressing.

11. Take cocktails to the next level with jumbo ice cubes.

A negroni on a table.

12. And by chilling your cocktail glasses.

Hands holding three cocktails.

13. Roast potatoes in duck fat.

Crispy roasted potato wedges.

14. Don't fuss with your food while it's cooking.

Chicken cooking in a skillet.

15. A few key condiments make all the difference.

A dog reaching for a plate of food on a table.

16. Vegetables can actually be the star of the show.

Crispy cauliflower on a plate.

17. Butter makes pretty much everything better.

Spaghetti with tomato sauce.

What's the best tip or trick you've learned just by eating at restaurants or watching pro chefs cook? Tell me in the comments!