Lifestyle

Kitchen Items That You Don’t Think You Need But You Do

Oftentimes, we want to be as minimalistic as possible when it comes to our home purchases. However, some items, like the ones in our kitchens, are actually good investments in the long run. And you don’t even have to be a chef to need these kinds of kitchen equipment. 

Getting these items is not that expensive, and in exchange, you can expand the recipes that you can make at home using them. You get to expand your imagination while saving money from not needing to eat in restaurants. 

Appliances and Electrical Tools

Slow Cooker

You might be content in relying on your stove for cooking your meals, but why not invest in a slow cooker? This handy appliance is actually very versatile and easy to use. And by easy, we mean it’s a lazy cook’s best friend. 

If you’ve been craving for brisket or lamb shoulder, but the idea of boiling them for long hours is turning you off, put them in the slow cooker and have it shorten the cooking time for you. In fact, why not create the meal itself and just come back when it’s done? Not only you’re saving time, but you’re also saving in the amount of dishes that you have to wash after!

Rice Cooker

A rice cooker will give you a nice, hot, perfectly cooked rice that goes well with stews and curry. Save yourself from mushy or undercooked grains, and just let this cooker do the cooking for you. You can even get more experimental and infuse your rice with a pandan leaf or coconut milk right in the rice cooker. Add various ingredients inside, and you’re good to go.

Now, you might be thinking that it’s unnecessary to get a rice cooker because you don’t even eat rice every day. But contrary to its name, a rice cooker can do so much more than just give you plain old rice. Did you know that you can make dishes ranging from mac and cheese to cakes and bread in a rice cooker? Well, now you do!

Toaster

You might already have an oven and a microwave, so now you think if you’ll need a toaster. Or perhaps you’re saving some money, and you can only afford a toaster for now. Don’t worry because this handy appliance is definitely a kitchen must-have. More than bread and bagels, a toaster can do recipes that an oven and microwave can too. You can cook bacon or reheat fries without turning them soggy. And if you’re craving for something healthy, perhaps a vegan burger cooked in the toaster will satisfy your taste buds. 

Hot Water Dispenser

Jumpstart your cooking time by boiling pasta with water from a hot water dispenser. You can also wash your greasy plates much easier when soaked in hot water. According to this useful source, you can even save in energy consumption with a hot water dispenser compared to relying on an electric kettle. Besides, who wouldn’t want hot water on the go when you’re craving tea at random times throughout the day?

Fryer

Perhaps you like it old school and just deep fry your tempuras or wings on the stovetop. However, you have to check the oil temperature and be extra careful when taking them out. With a fryer, all you need to do is dip the basket and raise it when it’s done. 

Hand Mixer

Save time and effort and get those perfectly fluffy eggs or meringue using an electric hand mixer. You can set the speed depending on the consistency the recipe needs and get perfect results even if you have a weak grip and hands.

Immersion Blender

If you don’t have a blender yet or even if you already have one, you might think that a hand mixer is unnecessary. However, this tool is actually more useful than you think it is. Imagine getting smooth mashed potatoes and creamy soups without the need to transfer the mixture in another bowl.

Prep Tools

Strainer

Are you used to just using the spatula or spoon to keep your pasta from falling into the drain when removing the water? But what about the amount of food waste when they accidentally fall with the liquid as well? Get yourself a strainer of different mesh sizes and save yourself the frustration of fallen spaghetti.

Cleaver, Boning Knife, and Paring Knife

Maybe getting a whole fancy knife set is unnecessary, and you think a kitchen knife is enough for your kitchen. You might not always be doing complicated recipes, but regardless, you can thank yourself later when you find these knives in your kitchen.

  • Cleaver

A cleaver might seem intimidating to use, but you’re going to need this large rectangular knife for difficult ingredients. It is much safer to use, especially when hacking through whole cuts compared to when you have to struggle when using a smaller knife. 

  • Boning Knife

A boning knife is much thinner than a slicing knife. And because of this, it is best in separating flesh from bone in tricky cuts of fish of poultry. Compared to a cleaver that can hack through bones, a boning knife can go across bones. If you find yourself struggling with curvy ingredients, it’s time to get a boning knife. 

  • Paring Knife

For fruits and vegetables, it’s safer to use a paring knife. It is small and lightweight, and you don’t have to increase pressure when peeling those ingredients. At the same time, you can use this to easily take the seeds out of bell peppers, to coring and trimming other veggies, and even when you are deveining shrimp.

Sharpening rod

As written on this website, knives need care too. You can maintain their quality by using a ceramic honing rod. It will realign the edges of your knives, and even keep them sharp in the long run. No need to purchase knives constantly. 

  • Shears

If you got knives, what’s the need for kitchen sears? Well, you can use these scissors for cutting a whole chicken or chopping herbs much quickly and comfortably. 

  • Grater

Graters are more than just for shredding cheese. You can add more depth to your dishes using citrus zest and redecorate your desserts with shaved chocolate. Much easier than using a knife, right?

  • Thermometer

Unless your equipment has a built-in thermometer, it’ll be hard to guess if you’re cooking your meats, bread, or desserts in the optimal temperature. You need a thermometer, so you know when to start or stop cooking.

  • Scale

If you already have measuring cups and spoons, it’s only right to get a kitchen scale. Some recipes such as baked goodies call for precise measurements of raw ingredients, and you need a scale to measure them accurately. 

Cooking Tools

You might think that a frying pan, saucepan, stockpot, and skillet are enough for your cooking needs. According to this website, a grill pan, casserole dish, and sheet tray are also excellent additions to have in your kitchen.

  • Grill pan

Sometimes, you can’t grill outside. The good news is a grill pan can still give you grilled foods with the signature grill lines without having to prepare charcoal and fire. Whether you’re using it for barbecue, roasted salmon, or burgers, a grill pan is an excellent addition to your pans. 

  • Casserole Dish

You can use a casserole dish in the microwave or broiler. Simply put a combination of ingredients inside, and you can let the other appliances do the cooking for you. You can even modify leftovers and turn them into another tasty dish. You are not just limited to lasagna and casseroles. 

  • Sheet Tray

You’ll be surprised by the things that you can do in a sheet tray. And the good news is that most of them are budget-friendly too. If you are not a fan of finger foods and cookies, you can use a sheet tray to make healthy and affordable meals using chicken thighs, sweet potatoes, and some herbs. Roast the chicken and veggies, add some citrus and spices, and voila! Surprise your taste buds every once in a while.

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