Can You Pass This Home Ec Trivia Quiz?


By: Beth Hendricks

7 Min Quiz

Image: elenaleonova/E+/Getty Images

About This Quiz

How many times have you diagrammed a sentence since graduating high school? None? Hmm. What about figuring out the sum of the measures of the interior angles of a hexagon? Nothing? Yeah, we didn't think so. But, we're guessing you've needed to know how to create a budget, the best way to get that stain out of your favorite shirt, or how long to hard boil an egg a time or two. 

Now, don't get us wrong: We're not knocking the study of English or math or any other core subject taught in high schools all over the country. We're just saying make way for Home Ec, too! Years and years ago, the study of home economics was a given in a high school student's curriculum. Male and female students alike learned how to sew on a button, how to balance a checkbook, and how to bake the perfect cake right alongside verb conjugation, learning the periodic table of elements and diving into the Pythagorean theorem. Today, Home Ec has quietly left many high schools, leaving students' scouring the internet for these lost skills.

And, that's where we come into play! In this quiz, we've uncovered some important Home Ec trivia. How many of these questions can you nail? Will you learn something new? There's only one way to find out!

Got mold taking over your bathroom? Which of these is the best way to treat and kill it?

Old-school Home Ec teachers and textbooks will tell you that a mixture of bleach and water is the best way to eliminate mold growth in your home. More modern homemakers will tell you that solutions with vinegar or hydrogen peroxide are also effective choices.


All of these are common household budgets categories except which?

Just like businesses, households operate more efficiently when a budget is put together to guide the finances. Typically, a home budget includes categories such as rent or mortgage, utilities, food and automotive expenses.


How often should you test the smoke detectors in your home?

Testing your smoke detectors monthly is advisable to ensure they're in good working order before you might actually (gulp!) need them. In addition, be sure to swap out the batteries at least yearly to make sure they're always armed.


Time to eat! Which of these food items is considered shelf-stable?

Think of your pantry when you consider "shelf-stable." Shelf-stable food items are the ones that live in your pantry — peanut butter, canned vegetables, old-fashioned oats, flour and other things that don't require refrigeration for food safety.


This question is gravy! Which of these do you need to make a roux?

We hope you aren't putting glass cleaner in your roux, since a roux is the beginnings of a gravy or sauce! Typical roux requires a fat, such as butter or oil, and flour. Once you've combined the oil and flour, it will start to thicken, and then you can add some liquid like chicken stock or milk.


Vegetables, dairy, meat and fruit are just some of the entries on the USDA's food pyramid. What is the food pyramid used for?

Many iterations of the USDA food pyramid have come and gone, but the goal of each has been to ensure balanced eating with appropriate servings from each food group: fruits, grains, vegetables, proteins and dairy. Today, the USDA uses MyPlate, represented by a plate sectioned into each food group.


If someone handed you a can of starch, what household task would you be undertaking?

Not only does ironing clothes appear to be a lost art, but the use of starch while doing so is even scanter. Starch, or spray starch as it's commonly known, is used to give clothes a more tailored appearance because it not only eliminates wrinkles but it also helps to create a crisper garment appearance.


The baby is screaming! Quick: What's the best way to test the temperature of a bottle of formula?

Boy, you thought that baby was screaming before — wait until you give him formula that scalds his poor little tongue! For generations, parents have tested a bottle's temperature by releasing a few drops on the inner wrist, a sensitive area of skin. If it's not too hot, it's good for the baby.


You've got a button-down shirt in the laundry. What's the ideal way to wash it?

Of course, dropping it off at the dry cleaner's is always an option. But don't you want to know how to do it for yourself? Proper Home Ec instructions say to unbutton all of the buttons of the shirt before tossing it in the washing machine. Washing with buttons buttoned weakens the threads that hold them.


You're heating oil when you notice small flames dancing around in your pan. Which of these points have you reached?

Trust us: You don't want to cook at any of these points. The "smoke point" occurs when the oil starts breaking down. You may notice a burning smell. The flash point, however, is when small flames start popping up in your pan. That's bad, but still not as bad as the fire point, when something explosive could happen.


A recipe calls for 16 cups of milk. What other measurement does 16 cups equal?

Hey, measuring cups are great, but when you understand kitchen conversions, you can make your life even easier. Sixteen cups in a recipe convert to one full gallon of that liquid. We don't know what you're cooking that requires a gallon of liquid, but we're intrigued!


Creating short, thin strips of a vegetable is a technique known as what?

It may sound more like a woman's name than a style of culinary cutting, but the concept of julienning will help you achieve long, almost matchstick-like shapes for vegetables, fruits or even meats.


The cheapest price isn't always the best value at the grocery store. What can help you determine that?

It's tempting to go for the cheapest item on the shelves, but hold on: Don't you want the best deal? Unit price helps you determine that. One package of paper towels might be $7 but only has four rolls, while another is $10 but has eight. The unit price will help you see that; even though it's more expensive, it's a better value.


We've been buttering bread all wrong. How are you supposed to do it?

Apparently, according to Home Ec know-it-alls, one should not butter an entire piece of bread all at once. Instead, pinch off a small piece, butter it and eat it, and then proceed to do that whole procedure all over again.


If you were preparing for a dinner party, which of these should you start preparing first?

Salads can be prepared well ahead of time and refrigerated, but not so with the main course and side mentioned here. You'll want to get the potatoes started before the steaks, though, which generally only need a few minutes to cook through depending on how you like them. Food prep timing is an important Home Ec concept.


Do you know what a trivet is used for? Which of these is correct?

You've seen a trivet, right? These are objects that can be used to hold hot pans to protect the surface underneath. Today's trivets come in all types of materials, including copper, silicon, cork and others.


Throat feeling scratchy? This home remedy can help soothe it. What are we referencing?

If we had a dollar for every time our moms told us to gargle with warm salt water, we'd have a lot of dollars. But, it turns out there's some truth to this tip handed down through generations. Warm salt water helps flush whatever virus is plaguing you out of your system and alleviates some of the uncomfortable symptoms.


Breakfast, lunch or dinner: Which of these is the most important meal of the day?

It's not just a good kickstart to your day ahead, but eating breakfast actually has numerous benefits. Researchers believe it gives you more energy to get going and also can contribute to better focus and better memory along with a lower risk of things like heart disease and diabetes.


Dinner is over and it's time to wash the dishes. In which order should you tackle them?

The idea behind an order to cleaning the dishes is that you start with the easiest first (that would be the cleanest ones) and move to the more difficult ones (those would be the kitchen utensils and pots and pans used in creating the meal).


Nobody likes a smelly refrigerator. What can you put in your refrigerator to eliminate odors?

Placing an open box of baking soda in a refrigerator can help reduce or eliminate odors. The baking soda will help absorb and neutralize odors in the refrigerator. For the best results, you should replace the open box every three months or so.


If you need to reattach a button to a shirt, you need to start with which of these steps?

Creating an anchor point starts with the back of the fabric. You want to run the threaded needle through to the front, then to the back, then to the front again. This creates an "X" shape to show where your button will be placed and adds extra reinforcement for your stitching.


Oh, no! You grabbed a jacket on your way out the door, but the zipper is stuck. What's a quick fix to un-stick it?

Unless your zipper is hung up on some of the fabric near it, a glass cleaner such as Windex will help loosen any grime, rust or residue keeping the zipper from doing its job. Spray a little on the offending area, wait a few minutes and then carefully give the zipper a tug.


Hosting a formal dinner? You'll need to know the proper order in which to serve courses. Which of these comes first?

It's soup before salad and then on to the main course if you're hosting a formal dinner gathering. Soup is typically set on a service plate in front of each guest, followed by the salad on a salad plate and then the main course. Leave room for dessert!


If you want to keep your indoor air quality in tip-top shape (and lower your energy bills), how often should you change your furnace filter?

Most experts in the care and keeping of your home agree — furnace filters should be replaced every three months. Changing them often does help to keep the air quality in your home clean and crisp and can help to reduce the cost of the energy you use monthly.


A recipe calls for a T. of baking powder. What does the "T" stand for?

Understanding kitchen "lingo" will help make cooking or baking from recipes even simpler. A "T" denotes a tablespoon of something, while an abbreviation of "tsp" references a teaspoon. "T" may also sometimes be abbreviated "Tbsp."


Thumbs up to bacon, but thumbs down to bacon grease. How can you safely dispose of it?

Let's get one thing clear: You never want to pour bacon grease down your sink or garbage disposal. When it cools and solidifies, you'll have a mess on your hands (and in your pipes). Allow the grease to cool, so it solidifies, and then wipe it from the pan and place it in the trash.


Laundry time: How should you separate clothes for the washing machine?

It may seem like a lot of extra work, but separating clothes by color (white clothing in one load, dark colors in another) can help preserve the colors of your various articles of clothing. This, in particular, keeps darker colors from bleeding onto lighter ones.


You can avoid salmonella infections by properly cooking which of these?

Undercooked poultry and even eggs and contain trace amounts of a bacteria known as salmonella, which can, in turn, cause the person eating it to become ill. There are other offenders, though, where salmonella can be present, including seafood and even some fruits and vegetables.


You're ironing a linen shirt. On which side should you place the iron?

Pressing a material like linen? There's no "right or wrong" way to do it! In fact, according to Home Ec gurus, you can press this material on either side; the right side will give you a shinier finish, while the wrong side will provide you with a flatter finish.


Making your own clothing? This pair of scissors will help reduce fabric fraying. What are they called?

Nothing will completely eliminate fabric fraying, but pinking shears are your closest bet. Their jagged blades create a serrated edge when the fabric is cut, helping to cut down on the fabric unraveling when you don't want it to.


According to experts, you should always wash which of these before preparing?

Believe it or not, Home Ec aficionados state that you should rinse off eggs before using them in food preparation. Why? Because the contents of an egg brush over the outside shell when cracked, trapping any bacteria from the shell into the egg itself.


Zzz ... How many hours of sleep does a six-year-old require?

We often hear that individuals require eight hours of sleep a night, but that number increases the younger the individual is. For a six-year-old, it's an average of nine to 12 hours of sleep per night. Can we go back to being six years old, please?


What's the best way to quickly — and safely — put out a grease fire?

Whatever you do, don't use water! Water will cause the grease to splash, potentially creating a larger fire. You can smother a grease fire with baking soda (use a lot), but it's always good practice to contact the fire department to ensure the fire is completely extinguished.


What three choices do you have if you're opting for an official table service for a meal?

Of the three table service style, Russian is the most formal, while English involves all food for a course being served from the table itself. Compromise, which is a funny name for the third, is truly a compromise — a blend of the English and Russian styles.


Someone just handed you a paring knife. What would you use it for?

Paring knives are some of the smaller, but more utilitarian knives, in a chef's arsenal. They are used primarily for peeling and cutting fruits and vegetables, and their small size is perfect for detail work in small spaces.


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