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Reverse Sauté: A Super Easy Technique to Cook Vegetables Super Fast

You don’t need a ton of time or fancy tools to get a delish side dish on the table. So, whether you’ve spent your time and energy perfecting the protein, or just need to get dinner done before hunger makes you hangry, the super fast reverse sauté method will give you incredible, flavorful, toothsome vegetables in just a few minutes.

A typical sauté is a quick and delicate balance between extreme heat and minimal time. Vegetables are added to a piping hot pan with a bit of oil. You need to keep those veg moving to prevent burning, but also leave them alone just enough so that the Maillard reaction and good surface caramelization can happen. With this method, you risk splashing hot oil or burning your food if the pan is too hot.

A reverse sauté is a gentler and easier cooking method—it’s harder to overcook or burn the veggies, and the technique locks in a fresher flavor, too. We start with a cold pan and add the vegetables, fat, and a little bit of extra moisture to the mix. When heated, the water turns to steam and lightly cooks the vegetables. The oil coats each piece, preventing them from burning once the water has evaporated. With this “reverse” method, the *sizzle* happens at the end of cooking, instead of at the beginning.

With this method, you can easily choose your own vegetable adventure. Below, we outline the basic sauté steps with some tips to inspire your future flavor combinations. From there, you can either jump to one of our favorite recipes to take this technique for a spin and see how it works. Or, you can dive right into the creating your very own unique sauté. Whatever you decide, we know it will be delicious.

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