Cooking at home is supposed to be a healthy choice, but some techniques can be surprisingly harmful. Whether it’s how you heat your food or the tools you use, hidden dangers could be lurking in your kitchen. Here are a few cooking methods you might want to reconsider to keep your meals safe and healthy.

A hand lowering a vacuum-sealed bag of raw meat with herbs into a pot with an immersion circulator for sous vide cooking.
Photo credit: Shutterstock.
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Deep Frying

A close up of fried food in a fryer.
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Deep frying might make food crispy and delicious, but it involves cooking at high temperatures in lots of oil. This process can produce harmful compounds like acrylamide and trans fats, which are linked to increased health risks like heart disease and cancer.

Grilling with High Heat

A steak with grill marks cooking on a barbecue next to a plate of grilled asparagus.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Grilling at high heat, especially over an open flame, can turn a backyard BBQ into a health hazard. This method can cause the formation of carcinogenic compounds like heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). It’s not just the charred flavor that’s risky!

Microwaving in Plastic Containers

A person opens a microwave oven door to access a bowl of cooked vegetables inside, with a toasted bread slice on a nearby plate.
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Popping leftovers in a plastic container into the microwave seems convenient, but it can release harmful chemicals like BPA and phthalates into your food. These chemicals are potential endocrine disruptors and can pose significant health hazards.

Using Non-Stick Cookware with Scratches

A scratched frying pan sits on a wooden surface next to a slotted spatula and a wooden utensil.
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That trusty non-stick pan with scratches might be more dangerous than it looks. When heated, it can release toxic fumes and particles from the Teflon coating, which can be harmful when inhaled or ingested. Keep an eye on your cookware’s condition!

Reusing Cooking Oil

A plastic bottle of cooking oil lying on its side with its yellow cap removed and placed next to the bottle on a wooden surface.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Reusing cooking oil, especially after deep frying, isn’t just a thrifty habit. It can lead to the buildup of harmful free radicals and trans fats. These nasties are linked to heart disease and other serious health issues.

Cooking with Aluminum Foil

Salmon and broccoli wrapped in foil.
Photo credit: Running to the Kitchen.

Wrapping food in aluminum foil for cooking can make clean-up easier, but at high temperatures, aluminum can leach into your food. Some studies suggest this could be linked to neurological issues and other health problems.

Charbroiling

Grilled steaks on a barbecue with flames and smoke, highlighting the char marks and juicy texture of the meat.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Charbroiling meats can give them a smoky flavor, but it also produces high levels of HCAs and PAHs. These carcinogenic compounds pose significant health risks over time. Maybe think twice before charring that steak!

Cooking Over an Open Flame Indoors

A chef holds a pan over a stove with large flames rising from it, while other pans and cooking equipment are visible in the background.
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Cooking over an open flame indoors might seem like a cozy idea, but without proper ventilation, it can produce dangerous levels of carbon monoxide and other harmful gases. This can lead to serious respiratory issues and even poisoning.

Using a Slow Cooker with the Wrong Foods

Slow cooker with beef stew and a ladle.
Photo credit: YayImages.

Slow cookers are great for convenience, but not all foods are safe for slow cooking. Foods like kidney beans need to be cooked at high temperatures to destroy toxins. Slow cookers may not reach these temperatures, risking food poisoning.

Boiling Food in Plastic Bags

A hand lowering a vacuum-sealed bag of raw meat with herbs into a pot with an immersion circulator for sous vide cooking.
Photo credit: Shutterstock.

Boiling food in plastic bags, such as with sous vide cooking, can be trendy but risky. The high temperatures can cause harmful chemicals from the plastic to leach into the food. This poses potential health hazards you might not expect from a gourmet meal.

15 Foods You Should Always Buy Frozen Instead Of Fresh

Person places mixed vegetables into a plastic freezer bag for storage, with other bags and vegetables visible on the table.
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While fresh produce often gets the spotlight for being the healthiest option, don’t overlook the frozen aisle on your next grocery run. Frozen foods can be superior in both flavor and nutritional value, especially when they’re processed right at peak ripeness. This article will guide you through the select foods that are actually better to buy frozen than fresh. Find out which staples you should be stocking up on to make your meals easier and your diet richer.

Read it Here: 15 Foods You Should Always Buy Frozen Instead Of Fresh

11 Foods You’re Cooking Wrong and How to Fix It

A person holds a frying pan with steak, taking it out of an oven.
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

We all have our kitchen strengths, but let’s face it—there are a few foods we might be getting wrong without even realizing it. From the simple steaming of rice to searing the perfect steak, cooking is full of little techniques that can make or break a dish. This article is your chance to stop those cooking faux pas in their tracks. Take a closer look at these common foods that often fall victim to missteps in the kitchen and learn how to do them justice.

Read it Here: 11 Foods You’re Cooking Wrong and How to Fix It

*Select images provided by Depositphotos.

Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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