Scallops are typically served at fancy restaurants—with a high-end price tag to match. But we’ll let you in on a little secret: The shellfish is actually really easy to cook at home. They take about five minutes max if you know how to prepare them properly. Read on to learn how to cook scallops, then bookmark the following scallop recipes so you can flex your new skills. (Your dinner party guests will be so impressed.)
But first, you should know what to shop for. Look for scallops that are evenly white with firm, slightly damp flesh. (We prefer additive-free dry scallops.) The other common variety, wet scallops, are soaked in a preservative and don’t brown as well in a skillet. And by all means, if you happen to spot harder-to-find bay scallops, snatch them up. They’re small, sweet and tender.