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Canned Tomatoes

If you're preparing a dish that includes a small amount of canned tomatoes, then skimping should be fine. However, if you're working on a sauce or anything that prominently features tomatoes, let your taste buds direct you to the higher-end options. Most chefs swear by San Marzano canned tomatoes, so keep your eyes peeled for them (they're available in a variety of brands). Although the nutritional value is basically the same, the bottom line is that imported tomatoes are often tastier. "The water and climate are different in Europe, so the tomatoes taste different," Larsen says. (Thankfully, buying tomatoes imported from Italy is not going to put the same dent in your credit card as buying, say, a handbag imported from Milan.)

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