1. Expert tip: Add 15% to your cooking time
An oven has a little more work to do trying to maintain temperature when two or more dishes are cooking. To make sure everything cooks to perfection, add an extra 15 percent to your cooking time.
For example, if your casserole requires 30 minutes, add 4.5 minutes to your overall cooking time.
2. Cooking vs baking
You cook a casserole or meat. You bake a cake or a loaf of bread. You can cook and bake at the same time, but you should follow some guidelines.
Baked goods get the priority when it comes to temperature. Cooking is flexible--just adjust the time.
You should also make sure that whatever you're cooking isn't too pungent (think super garlic). Baked items can absorb scents and flavors from an overpowering dish.
3. Google is your friend
If your dishes require different cooking temperatures, don't worry, Google has your back. Let' say your brussel sprout recipe calls for 450 but your bread calls for 350? Google "brussel sprouts 350" and voilà! Brussel sprouts and fresh baked bread at the same time.
Just keep your baked goods in mind: always default to their recommended oven temp. If you're making more than one baked good and they call for different temperatures, it's best to keep them separate.
Also consider that the outcomes for your dish may be different when you change up the temperatures. If you cook your brussel sprouts at a lower temperature, you could be sacrificing some of the delicious crispiness.
4. Mind your racks
Where you place your food in relation to the burners is very important. Too close to the top--you can risk burning a delicate dish. Put the wrong dish on the bottom--you can increase your cooking time or burn the bottom.
Top racks are important for even browning. Anything with a crisp crust should go here.
Bottom racks are necessary for dishes that benefit from a crispy bottom (think bread or pizza).
Spit the difference if you have two large trays of cookies. Place two racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven and rotate your cookies halfway through.
Not sure? When in doubt, stick with the middle rack.
COMMENT below if you have any of your own tried-and-true tricks!
SHARE with that person you know that's always juggling multiple dishes.