You’ve probably had that moment when you realized that your knife was dull, but you just didn’t have anything else to use to cut your meat. And if you’ve ever tried cutting meat with a dull knife, you know that the results can be disappointing if not dangerous. It doesn’t matter if it’s short ribs or pork tenderloin, raw meat can be one of the most difficult things to evenly slice. Something about its malleable texture makes it a never-ending challenge to master those picture-perfect cuts that you see all over Instagram.

So, while we can thank the internet for inspiring us to try to achieve sliced meat perfection in the kitchen, we must also credit the interwebs for teaching us how to do it. It turns out that the easiest way to get an impeccable slice of meat — even with a dull knife — is to put your meat in the freezer. Naturally, you don’t want to freeze your meat solid, but you do want to make the muscle tissue stiffen so that it holds together a little more firmly to make slicing a breeze. Generally speaking, 30 minutes will do the trick.

This time-saving kitchen hack will work for any meat except fish. The composition of fish is such that it doesn’t take kindly to being frozen, plus if you forget that you left seafood in the freezer, it can quickly get that unpleasant fishy taste. Therefore, it’s best to save this trick for the land animals. Just make sure to plan ahead so you don’t get caught off-guard with the extra preparation time. Alternatively, you can leave your meat in the freezer as you prepare all the other ingredients mise en place. This will make assembling your meal an absolute breeze. Just, whatever you do, don’t forget about your meat in the freezer!

What’s your favorite kitchen hack? Let us know @BritandCo!

(Photos via Brit + Co)