4 Surprising, but Genius, Ways to Use Chopsticks
As someone who works in the food industry, I have strong, albeit niche, opinions about lots of random topics. And there is one topic I have many feelings about: chopsticks. Growing up in a Chinese-American household, chopsticks were as common on the dinner table as forks. I have countless stories that start with a pair of chopsticks and end with me having to clean a greasy stain out of my clothes.
And while I always use chopsticks when eating dishes like Long-Life Noodles with Beef & Chinese Broccoli and Inside-Out California Rolls with Mango & Spicy Mayo, I've also discovered a few unconventional ways to utilize them. Here are four surprising, but creative, ways to use chopsticks when eating and cooking.
4 Ways to Use Chopsticks
When You Eat Messy Foods
I use chopsticks when I eat Cheetos. Yup, you read that right. I picked up this hack a few years ago and it's become my go-to method when snacking. I love this trick because it lets me enjoy Cheetos without worrying about my fingers getting stained with cheese dust or grease. Plus, it means I can enjoy an afternoon snack while I work and my keyboard won't get dirty. (And if you want a pair of chopsticks for your desk, we like this portable option that unscrews and takes up minimal space. Buy it: Amazon, $10).
When You Fry Foods
I spent years watching my grandmothers in the kitchen, and they always used chopsticks when cooking. Whether that was sautéing vegetables or making noodles, chopsticks were their preferred utensil. So while you may already use chopsticks for cooking, you might not know about longer chopsticks. Besides there being multiple materials for chopsticks, like wood or melamine, there are also different lengths.
These 16.5-inch-long chopsticks are perfect for frying foods (Buy it: Amazon, $7). Not only does it keep you farther away from harmful oil splatters, but I find I have better control with chopsticks as opposed to tongs. A pair of longer chopsticks would also come in handy when you're adding ingredients to boiling water and want to avoid the splash zone.
When You Make Scrambled Eggs
This is another trick I learned from my grandmothers, and it's how I always make scrambled eggs. Instead of using a fork to beat my eggs, I use a single chopstick. The chopstick helps me whip air into my eggs, but doesn't destroy the eggs like the sharp tines of a fork might. And when I cook the eggs, I use the chopstick to stir my eggs as opposed to dirtying a fork and spatula. And who doesn't love minimizing cleanup?
When You Use the Toaster
We've all been in this situation: You're down to the ends of a loaf of bread and when you go to toast them, they're sometimes too short to get out. And that's where a chopstick comes in handy. Not only is it easy to guide the bread to the top, but it's also safer than using a knife on the hot metal interior. (Always remember to unplug your toaster before sticking any utensil in it.)