As much as I've loved learning to cook these past few years of college, I'm still a little uncomfortable making food for myself and others. I've found it's incredibly easy to mess up, but it's also easy to avoid probably 85% of my kitchen blunders. 

I may be more prone to injury than the average person, but there are a few things I should be doing in the kitchen to avoid further harm. Learn from my kitchen blunders, friends. 

1. Burns

Jessica Citronberg

Pots and pans are actually pretty dangerous. I often find myself touching them on the stove or in the oven when I shouldn't.

How to avoid:

Hang your oven mitts next to the oven, having them in sight will likely remind you to wear them. You can also buy a pot that has a cool-touch handle for the stove. It might be a little more expensive, but it's worth it if you can avoid burns. 

2. I watch too much Chopped

My Food Network addiction has proven to be a disadvantage because it makes me feel invincible in the kitchen. It's good to be confident, also cautious when dealing with fire. My roommates can attest to my mishaps involving an overconfident flick of the wrist followed by prayers that the fire alarm won't go off.

How to avoid:

Know your limits and don't get cocky. Don't feel pressured to get your main course done in 20 minutes because Ted Allen isn't actually there counting down the minutes. 

3. Knife wounds

Jessica Citronberg

An issue I frequently run across are small nicks on my knuckles and fingers. They're not major, so I don't think much about it and run to CVS for bandaids. I haven't had a horrific cut in years, the last incident involved being overambitious with my knife skills and some strawberries.

How to avoid:

Pay attention! While it's easy to get distracted with friends and cool Spotify playlists, it's important to stay focused in the kitchen. It's also useful to practice knife skill tips from the pros. 

4. Spills

Nothing is worse than turning around in the kitchen and accidentally elbowing a cutting board of fresh veggies to the floor. Spills also pose potential risks like tripping or slipping, especially if you're so focused on the meal you don't realize the spill even happened. 

How to avoid:

Mise. En. Place. This may be the only productive thing the Food Network has taught me about "fancy" cooking. Make sure you have everything in its place before you start cooking to avoid a multitude of potential kitchen blunders. 

5. I ask for too much cooking advice 

When I'm feeling insecure about my cooking, I scope around for what to do next. It usually ends up in me being overwhelmed and confused. 

How to avoid:

While it's good to call on the internet in a time of need, trust your gut. If you make some mistakes it's OK. Cooking is a learning process and it's sometimes better to learn for yourself. 

6. Stomach pain

This also comes from watching the Food Network way too much. Somehow it gets into my head that I can add whatever spices I want and it will end up delicious. That is not the case. 

How to avoid:

It's also OK to cook simply. Pre-packaged gnocchi with olive oil is an acceptable homemade meal. 

7. Forgetfulness

Whether it's an ingredient or a step, I often forget to do something when I'm cooking something that requires more than 45 minutes of my focus and time. 

How to avoid:

Always set a timer. Even if you're sitting in the kitchen watching Netflix, it's still possible that you'll forget about something cooking until it starts smoking. Also, print out recipes and tape them on the cabinet. That way, you have everything right in front of you, making it less likely to forget an ingredient or step.

If nothing else, I hope sharing my common kitchen blunders makes you feel better about your own. We may not be iron chefs (yet), but we don't want to lose an appendage on the road to becoming one.