Kitchen gadgets and specialized cooking tools help you get meals on the table fast or create that fancy dish you’ve been anxious to attempt. From essentials to nice-to-haves, here are the kitchen items that will prepare you for any recipe.
Essential Kitchen Gadgets
Make everything from soup and spaghetti to cookies and muffins with these basic kitchen tools:
• Prep Tools. For pasta dishes and rinsing produce, you’ll need a sturdy colander. A collapsible colander is ideal in kitchens where storage space is at a premium. And any dish that requires a canned good won’t get made without a can opener. Electric models are easy to use—just check the height if you plan to store it on the counter under the cabinets.
• Chopping Tools. Every kitchen needs at least one cutting board. Sturdy wooden and bamboo cutting boards can stay on your counter and will keep your kitchen knives sharp the longest. Plastic and fiber composite are conveniently dishwasher safe. For a unique and specialized cut, you might not need a cutting board at all—try choppers, graters and mandolins.
• Bakeware. Mixing bowls, measuring cups and measuring spoons are vital tools for any baker. Go with stainless-steel mixing bowls for a durable option. Look for bowls with lids to easily store leftovers in the fridge and nesting sets to save on cabinet space.
• Kitchen Utensils. Save money by investing in a kitchen utensil set, which typically includes a mix of tongs, spatulas, slotted spoons, servers, whisks, or potato mashers. Store your cooking gadgets in a tool caddy or crock in modern stainless steel, hammered copper, bamboo or colorful ceramic.
Amp up your cooking tools with cool kitchen gadgets that will help you make the gourmet dishes you love most. From pasta makers to calzone presses to fondue pots, these tools can boost your cooking power. Many have high-tech elements, too. Meat lovers should be sure to have an instant-read food thermometer on hand—it can give the precise internal temperature of meat in seconds. For the avid baker, a digital kitchen scale with a conversion button allows you to switch easily between ounces and grams.