The Effortless Foil Hack For A Non-Stick Cooking Experience

Aluminum foil is your best friend in the kitchen. It can make your cooking experience easier in so many known ways — and even one little-known way that you probably hadn't thought of. Whether you're preventing meat from drying out or trying to avoid spill-overs onto the bottom of your oven, aluminum foil always has a purpose. But here's something you might not have known: Crinkling the foil makes it even better. The crinkles will help prevent food from sticking to the foil, giving you a nonstick experience without the addition of cooking spray or oil.

If you're someone who will do anything to avoid dirtying another bowl or cooking tray, you might also prefer to put foil over all of your sheet pans for easy cleanup. The downside is that it doesn't always prevent food from sticking. And while cooking spray is a great alternative, what do you do if you don't have any on hand? You crinkle the foil.

How to create nonstick aluminum foil

The process is simple. Rip a sheet of aluminum foil off the roll, and rather than molding it smoothly across your baking sheet, add one easy step in between the ripping and molding. Gently crinkle it in your hands, as if you were getting ready to take a wannabe-Michael Jordan shot with it into the trash can, then un-crinkle it and spread it out across the baking sheet. 

The newly-made divots in the foil will help to create enough separation that the food won't stick and can easily be worked off the foil with a spatula.

One thing to consider: Crinkling foil too tightly can make it difficult to pull it back apart, as the small folds easily get wrapped around each other. When you crinkle it, make sure you do so gently, which will allow you to undo it easily and avoid any frustration (as in, don't turn it into a tight foil basketball, though we know you want to).

Other uses for aluminum foil in the kitchen

Not only does the foil act as a nonstick barrier between the food and the sheet, but it also has plenty of other genius uses in the kitchen. If you're worried about food dropping onto the bottom of your oven, simply place a piece of foil on the baking rack below where the food is cooking. It will act as a barrier, keeping your oven's base clean (do not put foil on the oven base, as this can damage the oven).

Foil is also great for oven-baking food that easily dries out. Place a sheet of foil over the top of an oven-safe dish, and the food will still cook without being over-exposed to the oven's heat. It's perfect for chicken or turkey breast, which can easily get too dry if even slightly overcooked.

For the outdoor kitchen, foil comes in handy to clean the grill. Shape it into a tight ball, then use it to scrub the grill grates and remove all of that stuck-on gunk from your last grill session. The grill will be good as new, and you won't even have to dirty up a sponge.