How To Fake Your Way To Being A Chef

The only thing better than eating delicious food is looking at it. I mean, there's a reason why the hashtag #foodie is constantly dominating our social feeds. Capturing and sharing the perfect image of a could-be art-directed edible spread is a fast track to social media success (read: all of the 'likes')! From double-tapping a pic of perfectly curated plate shots on Instagram, watching a crescent-roll-dough-involved instructional video on Facebook, or pinning wonderful recipes onto your "must try" board on Pinterest, the Internet was basically created to celebrate all things food. And we all want in on the action — even people who can't cook.

As much as we'd like to all be world class chefs, able to whip up a five-course meal with only the ingredients found in our fridge and cupboard, not all of us are ready — or able — to prepare Internet-worthy food creations. And even if you are capable of expertly navigating an oven, sometimes you're just too busy to do all the chopping, slicing, peeling, and roasting that seems necessary to create something worthy of a few hundred 'likes.'

The good news? Just because you're not yet ready to compete on the next season of your favorite culinary competition show doesn't mean you don't deserve to have a strong #foodgame. To help you out, we've partnered with Evol, a frozen food company committed to making real food that not only looks good, but tastes delicious, too. Together, we've created a list of tips and tricks that will help you eat awesome food and post amazing #foodgrams — without taking away from your already busy schedule. Ready? Let's go.

1. Set The Stage

To get started, you're going to have to create the right aesthetic. Fall is coming up, so now is the time to consider getting some seasonally appropriate mums for your kitchen or dining room table. A set of fancy white (or any solid color) plates can serve as the perfect backdrop for a delicious-looking teriyaki chicken meal. Remember: it's all about the atmosphere!

2. Top Things Off With A Garnish

No one wants to see a sad wilted salad or a lackluster turkey sandwich. To beat your current PLR (Personal Like Record, that is), you're going to have to bring out the big guns. Our suggestion? Evol's truffle mac and cheese, topped with extra bread crumbs and garnished with a spring of parsley. Perfecto!

3. Put In (A Little Bit) Of Effort

All of Evol's foods can be prepared using the microwave, but a little bit of effort can go a long way. Give your burritos and quesadillas rugged grill marks by cooking them over a barbecue. Or, if you have a few extra minutes, think outside the microwave and prepare your chicken enchiladas in the oven. You can also use your stove top, or even a panini press if you have one, and voila! #ChefLife, complete.

4. Use Natural Lighting — And The Best Angle

You know what looks awesome in the morning light of brunch? A spicy uncured bacon, egg, roasted potato, jalape ñ o and cheddar breakfast burrito, topped with salsa and accompanied by a Bloody Mary (celery is mandatory). And please, for the love of everything that is right, never shoot your meal from where you're sitting. The best #foodenvy pics are taken from directly above your plate, or from the side with a close-up.

5. Create The Perfect Pairing

Let's be honest: dinner can often be improved with a glass of wine. So stop by the store on the way home for a bottle that compliments your dinner. We recommend a nice, full-bodied red with Evol's fire grilled steak. And if you're going to post a picture of your beautiful pairing, make sure to use the correct wine glass. Details matter!

6. Enjoy Your Meal

You know what's even better than likes, shares or comments? Taking a moment out of your busy day to enjoy a good meal. Whether you're eating with friends, eating next to your cat or sitting at your kitchen table with a good book, it's important to love what you're eating and feel good about it. Sure, you might never be a master chef, but you've made (or at the very least, heated!) a delicious, nutritious meal for yourself — and that's something to celebrate.

This post is sponsored by Evol.

Images: TorontoEaters, Pepe_Nero, trehehaeuser, teddykelley, oelli, faceline dangold /Unsplash