5 Small Appliances No Kitchen Should Be Without

Photo By D'Arcy Norman

If you cook regularly, you probably have a few items in your kitchen that you can honestly say you don’t know what you would do without them. Well, I have a few myself.

Kitchen gadgets and appliances that make cooking easier and faster are sometimes essential to our busy schedules. So, if you’re all for preparing home-cooked meals, without the hassles, you may want to consider these five appliances, that is, if you don’t already own them.

  1. Slow-cooker – The slow-cooker has got to be one of, if not, the greatest inventions for cooking easy meals. Stick your food in, turn the dial, leave the house if you like, and come back a few hours later to a delicious, hot home-cooked meal. From soups, to meats, to vegetables, this is a very versatile cooking machine. Here are two of my favorite slow-cooker recipes:
    Santa Fe Soup
    Brown Sugar and Pineapple Ham
  2. Stand Mixer – For the bakers among us, the stand mixer is a super wise investment. It’s great for cakes, cookies and homemade breads. I have to be honest, when I first got my stand mixer, I was afraid I would never get my money’s worth out of it. Well, that definitely has not been the case. I don’t know what I ever did without mine. A couple of great recipes in which I utilize my stand mixer are:
    Honey Oatmeal Bread
    Hershey’s “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Cake
  3. Indoor Grill – Did you know that you can actually grill a hamburger in 5 – 7 minutes, or a thick chicken breast in 6 – 8 minutes? Well, with an indoor grill, you can. Talk about getting a nice meal together in no time, here is the way. My grill is actually the largest that I could find since there are four in my family. It is also a snap to clean because the grill grates are removable. I love it!! (Note: The key is to get one that has a lid that closes down on top of the food).
  4. Deep Fryer with Basket – I know, it’s healthier not to fry foods, but I like to fry once in a while. There are really two wonderful things about a deep fryer with a basket. First, you can set the temperature to an exact degree, and the fryer lets you know when it reaches that temperature. Secondly, with the basket, you can eliminate burns from trying to drop food directly into the hot grease. The basket is also beneficial to draining grease off of foods.
  5. Coffee Maker – Most people have a coffee maker in their homes, but it still had to go on the list. Why? Because it is in the top five small appliances to have in your kitchen. Even if you don’t drink coffee, it’s not a bad idea to have one handy for overnight guests, or for dinner guest who like coffee with dessert. After all, you can purchase a relatively inexpensive coffee maker.

Even if you’re not much into cooking, these few kitchen “must haves” can help you get meals done more speedily, and they will definitely make them simpler. You can really impress without the stress.

What is the one kitchen gadget or appliance you feel you couldn’t live without?

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Posted on March 21st, 2009 in Food and Entertaining | 5 Comments
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  • Jendi says:

    I need a new slow cooker. I loved my other one right through the bottom of it.

    I think I would miss the microwave the most. I don’t cook meals in it; just a lot of reheating.

    Jendi’s last blog post..Animals and Growing Up

    • Amanda says:

      I probably should have added the microwave and made it “6 Small Appliances..” What was I thinking leaving the microwave off?

      I use mine more than any of the other appliances. Maybe that’s the problem – I’ve had it for so long and use it so often I take it for granted.

  • Kim says:

    I would have to agree with you on three of them! The slow cooker, stand mixer and coffee maker! One piece of equipment that I don’t have, but debate about getting is a food processor. Any thoughts?

    Kim’s last blog post..Wall Art

    • Amanda says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by. As far as the food processor, I do have one. I have to admit though, I rarely use it. I don’t know if they are all this way, but mine just seems to be a pain to clean. There are several parts, and it just seems easier for me to chop the old fashioned way, good sharp knife and cutting board.

      On the flip side, a food processor is handy if you need to julienne or do a lot of fine chopping. It really depends on how much and what type of chopping you do regularly and whether you mind the cleanup. I guess for me it’s one of those things that just sits there in the cabinet most of the time, but when I need it, it’s nice to have. I hope this has helped some.

  • Sue says:

    What about a toaster?… it is not on the list..

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