Healthy Kitchen Hacks #35

*DIY Taco Shells * Easy Preserved Lemons * How To Roast Avocados * Easy Way to Mash Avocados * Short Cut Sushi Roll*

Healthy Kitchen Hacks: DIY Taco Shells, How To Roast Avocados, How to Quickly Mash Avocados, Easy Preserved Lemons, Short Cut Sushi Roll via @tspbasil

Time for another Healthy Kitchen Hacks post! Here are the top 5 shortcuts/tricks/mini-recipes I’ve been trying out in my kitchen in the past week:

1) DIY Taco Shells
via Kelly @ Foodie Fiasco

Healthy Kitchen Hacks - DIY Taco Shells in less than 10 minutes in your oven @tspbasil

Tacos are in our weekly menu rotation and I usually have Trader Joe’s Taco Shells on hand but I wanted to try this trick to make your own taco shells from soft corn tortillas in less than 10 minutes in your oven.

And not only did it work like a charm, but I liked them better than the commercially made hard shells because the base of the shell is wider (you drape the tortilla over two rungs of your oven rack) so less likely to break while you eat it. #BONUS

Make this: Sloppy Joe Tacos (a rare recipe that both my 8 year old and husband love!)

And if you like this hack, here’s a previous hack on how to make taco bowls in your oven.

2) Easy Preserved Lemons
Katie via @Mom’s Kitchen Handbook

Healthy Kitchen Hacks- Easy Preserved Lemons @tspbasil

Ever since getting my hands on Ottolenghi’s Plenty (my favorite/most used cookbook in the past few years), I’ve wanted to make preserved lemons, which are a common ingredient in many Middle Eastern and Moroccan dishes. They have an intense lemon flavor but are less tart – they are commonly used to flavor chicken dishes, salads, whole grains and the list goes on.

Katie has a recipe for Easy Preserved Meyer Lemons (she loves them in tuna salad!) that I followed using regular lemons. They are super simple to make – the hard part is being patient for a month while they transition to something magical.

Make this: 5 Ways to Use a Jar of Preserved Lemons and Braised Moroccan Chicken and Olives

This week's Top 5 #HealthyKitchenHacks include DIY Taco Shells, Short Cut Sushi Rolls + more! @tspbasil Click To Tweet

3) How to Roast Avocados
via Cooking Light

Healthy Kitchen Hacks- How To Roast Avocados @tspbasil

It never occurred to me to stick an avocado in the oven until I saw Cooking Light’s recipe for Grilled Chicken with Seared Avocados and a light bulb went off. Roasting avocados gives them a deeper flavor and takes your homemade guacamole up a few notches, too.

Cut in half and remove the pit from two avocados. Sprinkle a 1/4 teaspoon of both sugar and salt (and cumin if you’d like) over top and stick in the oven at 425 degrees for about 10 – 15 minutes. If you are also roasting fish, chicken or meat for dinner, cook the avocado halves along side.

Make this: Roasted Avocado + Salmon Taco Salad

4) Easy Way To Mash Avocados
via America’s Test Kitchen

Healthy Kitchen Hacks- Easy Way to Mash Avocados @tspbasil

Speaking of roasted avocado guacamole, the next time you whip up – or I should say mash-up – a batch, use a pastry blender or a potato masher. These kitchen tools work especially well when you are making guac for a crowd and you’ll get through those avocados a lot faster than using a fork.

Make this: Bacon + Roasted Garlic Guacamole

5) Short Cut Sushi Roll
Gina @SkinnyTaste

Healthy Kitchen Hacks- Short Cut Sushi Roll @tspbasil

I’ve been wanting to make this Spicy California Shrimp Stack from Skinny Taste since I pinned it last year because it looked so delicious. I also thought of it as the ultimate sushi roll hack – no need for the nori wrap or a sushi mat. Instead, all you need is the ingredients and a 1-cup measuring cup.

My first attempt was a flop as I packed the measuring cup too tightly. My second stack came out much better (though admittedly not as beautifully layered as Gina’s.) But no matter – they were delicious and I will be making them again, no doubt.

Would you try any of these hacks? Do you have healthy kitchen or healthy living shortcuts to share? Shoot us an email ( or ) or share below in comments and we’ll try them out.


We’re Serena & Deanna, two dietitians who love food as much as you do!  

We're also moms and business owners who share our family recipes, healthy kitchen hacks and nutrition adventures while keeping it real in the kitchen with you.

We’re so glad you’ve stopped by!

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