The 10 best cooking shortcuts from Joanna Gaines

We love Joanna Gaines for her remodeling and decorating expertise, and now, with the release of her new cookbook Magnolia Table, we’re loving all her cooking tips too.

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10 best cooking shortcuts from Joanna Gaines
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10 best cooking shortcuts from Joanna Gaines

Stock up on crescent rolls

To get that homemade feel you don’t always have to make everything 100% from scratch. In Magnolia Table, Joanna relies on refrigerated crescent roll dough for a few tasty recipes, like her quick orange-walnut sweet rolls and her classic chicken potpie. This cuts the prep time down significantly, and the results can taste just as good as something made all by hand.

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Save time with rotisserie chicken

While everyone loves a perfectly roasted chicken for dinner—and then the leftovers used in tasty dinners all week—it can be hard to find the time to roast one on a busy evening. That’s why Joanna grabs a grocery store rotisserie chicken to use in a handful of recipes, like her cozy chicken potpie.

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Turn tricky dishes into casseroles

Have a favorite dish that you always order at a restaurant but is just too tricky to make at home? Joanna says turn those into a casserole! She explains in her book that Chip loves eggs Benedict, but making individual servings at home can be a real hassle. So to get that same flavor with less work, Joanna turned it into an easy-to-make, easy-to-serve casserole. Genius! 

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Use store-bought crust

Pie crust serves as the foundation for so many of our favorite dishes—pie (obviously!), quiches and tarts—but making your own crust from scratch is sometimes too time-consuming. According to Joanna, don’t worry about it! She writes in Magnolia table that she subs store-bought crust for homemade all the time, especially when she’s whipping up a tasty quiche.

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Refrigerated biscuits are your friend

We all know that Joanna is a true Southern gal with an authentic recipe for buttermilk biscuits (you can check out how to make them right here), but we also know she’s a busy woman! That’s why when it comes to chicken and dumplings, Joanna says that you can easily substitute packaged biscuits for her biscuit and dumpling recipe.

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Focus on the main dish and take shortcuts on the sides

In Magnolia Table, Joanna explains how enchiladas are a family favorite in her house. The cheese-filled chicken enchiladas are the star of the show and the side dishes—beans and rice—are just supporting players. So when time is tight, focus on the main, and used packaged rice as a quick substitute. Joanna prefers Knorr brand Mexican rice mix.

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Transform your condiments 

We love our sandwiches layered with flavored aiolis, but we never think to make those fancy types of mayonnaise at home. After all, mayonnaise from scratch can be a real chore. But to get that same effect, Joanna takes her favorite mayonnaise (she says she prefers Hellman’s) and stirs in a handful of herbs and spices. For her version, add chopped chives, garlic, dill, parsley, paprika and a bit of lemon juice. Feel free to add your favorite flavors to dress up your sandwiches.

Have a boxed pancake mix on hand

While Magnolia Table has an exceptional recipe for fluffy pancakes, Joanna writes, “I always have a boxed mix in the pantry for when I just don’t have the time.” It’s always smart to have these backup plans, plus boxed mixes serve as a great foundation for all sorts of recipes like these pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes and even this five-star breaded catfish.

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Use basics as a base

Even the most unassuming ingredients can turn into a craveable snack. In Magnolia Table, Joanna describes how her friend makes the tastiest seasoned crackers, perfect for parties. Try our version with these seasoned crackers—only four ingredients!

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There's always pizza

No matter how carefully you plan or how carefully you read a recipe, sometimes dishes can just go wrong. If something goes wrong and your dinner flops, take this advice from Chip and Joanna from Magnolia Table, “there’s always pizza.”

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Where the star really shines, though, is her expert shortcuts. These time-saving tips are just thing for getting tasty family meals on the table in a hurry. Check them out!

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Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines on Instagram
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Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines on Instagram
This is 40. And I like it... #pregnantandforty #anddoughnuts
I can't believe tonight marks our very last episode of Fixer Upper. This picture is of us filming our pilot in 2012 and then our last scene of fixer in 2017. What a journey this has been! Check out my blog to read an update from us and to see what's on the horizon for our family and Magnolia as we move forward. The end is bittersweet, but we are excited for what's to come. Tune in tonight for the series finale on HGTV @ 9/8c! #fixerupper (link in profile)
We can’t believe tonight’s the series finale of #FixerUpper. What a ride it’s been! I'll be sharing some blasts from the past today leading up to the final episode at 9/8c on HGTV.
I can't believe there are only TWO fixer uppers left?! I love tonight's episode!! See Chip's dream of owning a breakfast joint turn into a reality with this giant renovation. Watch tonight at 9/8c @hgtv #magnoliatable #fixerupper
What an amaizng weekend with the @timtebowfoundation ✨ Thank you for giving hope and love to so many #ttfgolf2018
Tonight's episode is another favorite of mine because it's a personal project here at the farm. I can't wait for you to see this beautiful reveal! #fixerupper 9/8c @hgtv ❤️
Tonight’s going to be a very special episode! We partnered with @timtebow and the @timtebowfoundation to help an amazing family here in Waco. You won’t want to miss it!! @hgtv 9/8 CT. #fixerupper | Photo courtesy of @HGTV
The restaurant is getting so close. Magnolia Table will be open soon and we can’t believe it?!? Chip + Jo=❤️
Gaines party of 7.. (If you’re still confused.. WE ARE PREGNANT) @joannagaines
This guy right here... I get to live life with him. I get to hear his thoughts and benefit from his wisdom and encouragement on a daily basis. The reason I am who I am today is because Chip pushed me to go for it. People think of him as a jokester, and he is. It’s a huge part of why I fell in love with him in the first place. But he is so much more than that. He is the ultimate cheerleader, coach and dream maker. I am so thrilled that his book releases today mostly because I believe it holds truth that the world is in desperate need of. I am always proud to be Chip’s wife but today more than ever. I know this book was a true labor of love. Well done, Chip Carter Gaines! #CapitalGaines @chipgaines
What a day!! #CapitalGaines #booktournyc @chipgaines
What a night ✨✨ #silobration
Today we got to take a walk down memory lane with the crew... remember this house?! This was the first home we shot for our #fixerupper pilot episode five years ago! My how time flies 📺
Thank you all for watching, caring and cheering us on these past few years. We are overwhelmed by your support and your kindness. You have become a part of our story forever. Season 5 of Fixer Upper is scheduled to start airing in November and we really have saved the best for last! (To see the full announcement about our finale season, visit magnoliamarket.com/blog)
Congratulations to my Chipstarter winners! Some may say 6 out of 2,700 is lucky.. around here we call that a miracle and I’m honored to be a small part of your story moving forward. Thank you to everyone who took the time to share your dream with me. Capital Gaines is officially out tomorrow, so go pick up a copy and keep working towards that dream of yours. #CapitalGaines (link to winning videos in my profile)
Jo has poured her heart and soul into this new line, Hearth & Hand with Magnolia available at Target November 5th. We're here with Bullseye at Target HQ today announcing it to all of their team members! I wrote down all my thoughts about this project on the blog—go check it out. #HearthAndHand (Link in profile)
@U2 tonight - I have a feeling this is going to be a good one. #U2TheJoshuaTree2017
Another #fixerupper reveal down today for Season five! @hgtv #season5iscoming
Was trying to make a video for a friend this morning with @chippergaines .... his tutorial was 👍🏽 #🤡
Once a design assistant, always a design assistant. I've got the best job in the world! #fixerupper #season5iscoming
I've got you babe! #season5iscoming #fixerupper 📹: @huntybuns
WHAT!?! 📸@brockwayne
Out on a hot date last night! @joannagaines loves to drive, so I usually let her.. but road trips, those are mine!
"We were together. I forget the rest." - Walt Whitman & @jimmydon522 Happy Valentine's Day @joannagaines
He competes with the view. Man bun, tube socks, adult onesie and all... He still looks mighty fine to me❤️#workcation #bookcamp
That was a fun date night ❤️@chippergaines @u2
Today started off with me holding one of our new baby goats and counting chickens... I knew it was going to be a good one. THANK YOU for all the kind words and birthday wishes ❤❤❤
Watch an all new #fixerupper tonight!! 9/8c @hgtv
Happpppy New Year!!! 2017!! #adultonesies @chippergaines
Tonight is an all new special episode! It's the season four Clip show- full of out takes, bloopers and behind the scenes footage. You won't want to miss! 9/8c @hgtv
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