Why do recipes always lie about how long things take?

Any time a famous chef makes a recipe it will say something like "easy 15 minute recipe" but in reality it will take like an hour and a half once you factor in all the prep work. The actual cooking part might take 5 seconds like they claim, but I'm not a professional chef and it's going to take me way longer and I dont own a $10000 stove.

Why aren't they held accountable for their time estimates? Also why does every prepackaged frozen meal tell me to overcook everything to **** at 450 degrees?

13 Answers

Relevance
  • 3 weeks ago

    They are assuming you know how to cut things up, all of the methods of cooking such as sauteing, broiling or baking etc. If you know the basics of how to cook anything then it will take minutes but to do it in 15 minutes you need 15 years worth of cooking experience or if you are a fast learner at least a few years. I cooked big multi course meals for guests with a small kitchen a lousy stove and very limited counter space and now I am cooking without a kitchen and using hot plates and air fryers but I can cook good tasty meals. But they are talking to people with cooking skills and experience not to beginners. 

    Attachment image
  • Anonymous
    3 weeks ago

    Who is going to hold them accountable? I think they lie because they want people to think they have the time to cook and it's not hard... on the other hand when you have enough practice it does take much shorter time so they're probably not entirely lying. First time I make a recipe it takes me an hour. Third time, 30 mins.

  • 3 weeks ago

    because when you like food it takes along time to cook

  • 3 weeks ago

    Most recipes will break down the time into Prep time, Cook time and if there is a long cook time or marinade time involved it may indicate "hands off" time.

    Most recipes also assume that you have all the ingredients gathered when you start prep and do not include going through the pantry looking for something or through the refrigerator getting veggies.

    If you know you are slower just add in a few extra minutes. 

    Also a $10000 stove set at 350 degrees cooks at the same rate that my GE does when it is set at 350 degrees. 

    The difference might be with the stove top, some ranges have a "fast boil" or super heated burner but that is only going to save a few minutes not enough time to worry about.

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • kswck2
    Lv 7
    3 weeks ago

    To a professional chef, chopping say 10 lbs. of carrots, takes a Lot less time than the average person. So it may well take a Lot less time for them. A good rule of thumbs is to just add about 15 minutes more to the prep stage of a recipe, and a about 15 minutes more to the actual baking time, since not all ovens are calibrated perfectly, like a professional chef's. 

  • Anton
    Lv 6
    3 weeks ago

    When you are experienced, you can quickly chop the vegetables.

    If you are not, it takes more time so you don't chop your fingers as well.

  • 3 weeks ago

    with experience it will always be faster...kinda like sex..that first time its done in like 5 seconds but with experience and practice you can make it last an easy 15 minutes....

  • 3 weeks ago

    They don't lie, they just don't give the time that a normal person will take. 

  • Anonymous
    3 weeks ago

    I have this pet peeve too, especially with Instant Pot recipes.  Anyone who claims you can make rice in three minutes is a liar.   Ok...it takes three minutes of pressure to make the rice, but it takes 15 minutes for the pot to pressurize.   It IS pretty cool that I can make refried beans from bag to table in an hour and cook a whole chicken with succulent pull-apart breast in 30 minutes so I won't complain too much. 

    I do appreciate recipes that differentiate between active prep time and total time, but I have enough experience that I can figure it out just by reading the recipe. 

    "Why aren't they held accountable for their time estimates?"   Held accountable by whom and how?  If people find their recipes crappy, they won't be willing to pay for them.    But let's be honest.  Most of us pay nothing for recipes these days.    Some recipes are very well tested and others aren't tested at all.   With more experience, you will learn which sources work well for you and which ones don't.  

    As you become more experienced you will be able to read a recipe and know how long it will take you and also whether it's likely to be to your taste or not.   As you develop your skills, you will also learn how to do things more quickly.

    Invest in a food processor if you don't have one.    It turns mire poix (onion, carrot, garlic, celery, etc.) into a 60 second task as well as grating cheese, slicing potatoes, chopping nuts, making salad dressing or dips.    My food processor IS my prep chef and it saves a crap ton of time.

    If you like to cook and have friends who do too, consider making some meals together.   I'm pretty handy in the kitchen but I still often learn tips and tricks from others that I never would have thought of.

    Happy eating!

  • Anonymous
    3 weeks ago

    So because you're the idiot that can't manage time, nor do you have basic kitchen skills, they should be held accountable? K...keep reaching.

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.