Everybody loves to save time in the kitchen, even those who enjoy cooking. With these 10 kitchen tools you will make kitchen time a breeze and you will wonder why you didn’t start using things sooner!
1. Citrus Juicer
If you don’t already own a citrus juicer, buy one immediately. If you do already own one, then start using it! Not only are citrus juicers great for squeezing lemon, lime and orange juice when called for in recipes, they save you muscle and extract the most juice possible that you could never achieve with hand squeezing. Additionally you won’t have to worry about the seeds. Citrus juicers can be bought for about a starting price of $12 and they will last you years. They are easy to clean up and fresh-squeezed orange and grape fruit juice is far superior in taste and nutritional value to anything you can possibly buy in the grocery store. Once you taste fresh squeezed juice you will never go back to store bought. And serving your guests fresh juice will get you non stop raves for the uplifting and refreshing feeling they experience!
2. Portable Timer
You can buy a portable timer at a starting price of under 5 bucks. With a portable timer you don’t need to worry about the oven and accomplish other tasks outside the kitchen, knowing exactly when you need to return to check that lasagna or see if that garlic bread is ready. It’s easy to forget time when you leave the kitchen, but a portable timer will reassure you of when exactly you should return to the kitchen to continue your other tasks.
3. Food Chopper
You can get a food chopper starting at about $10. It will last you years. Food choppers are awesome for making pates and dips and mixing smooth and creamy deli style tuna fish. Make awesome hummus or guacamole in minutes! They are easy to clean and the results are superior to buying prepackaged deli and grocery store foods. Food Choppers are an essential kitchen time saver, and once you start using it you will realize more and more uses for saving time in your cooking.
Blenders don’t need to be expensive. You can get a low end blender for $20 to $30 and they provide a multitude of uses from making smoothies and bartender drinks to even making your own sorbet from frozen fruits and juice. Many people have blenders and they forget to use them, but once you start taking full advantage of your blender, you will find it not only to be time saving but a fun way to create variety in your menu experience.
5. Rubber Spatulas
Having a good set of rubber spatulas in at least 3 sizes will save you time and money in the kitchen. Food won’t be wasted when using the last of that mayonnaise, or pouring batter from a baking mix you just prepared. And rubber spatulas are fantastic when it comes to spreading condiments on your bread or toasted sandwich. They spread so much nicer than butter knives and in one fell swoop. When you are making sandwiches for several people you can really appreciate how fast a good spatula can be in saving time!
6. Four Sided Stainless Steel Grater
A good grater is not only a great time saver for quickly grating cheese (and grating your own cheese is far superior in taste to buying store-grated cheese), you will find it handy in grating raw vegetables from carrots to radish to potatoes to much much more. It doesn’t take much muscle to do your own grating and you’ll find that grating some items are much faster than chopping them with a knife.
7. Large Metal or plastic Colander
I don’t think a day goes by where I don’t use my colander. They are fast and efficient when it comes to draining pasta and vegetables or even french fries. Don’t think you can just keep a lid on a pot and pour out the excess water without using your colander. The “hold the cover and just pour the water” method is not only ineffective, you can burn yourself with steam. It will take you far more time to deal with a burn or injury than if you had used the colander in the first place.
8. Crock Pot or Slow Cooker
You can get a crock pot or slow cooker at a starting price of about $20, and it will likely last you years. You may already have one and rarely use it. Well, start using it and you will be amazed at how much time it saves you as well as saving you money!
Many crock pot dishes from soups to beans can provide multiple meals, freezing left overs that can be reheated on the stove top or microwave for weeks to come! The other great thing about crock pot cooking is it can easily fit with a busy family schedule where different family members eat at different times. They can each eat a “hot” meal without the effort of you cooking multiple times.
9. Non-stick Wok
You can save time in the kitchen and cook fabulous meals by using a non stick wok. One pot to clean and fresh veggie based meals ready in minutes. You can’t beat that! You can get a wok at a starting price of about $20.
10. Air Tight Food Storage Containers
Air Tight Food Storage containers will save you both time and money in the kitchen because you can neatly store your rice, pasta, dry baking ingredients, snacks and even organize spice packets and meal mixes. They will help you find what you need in your pantry at a glance and not only keep ingredients fresh, but keep you from accidentally spilling that open box of elbow macaroni or instant rice or open bag of flour and creating a kitchen disaster that requires lots of sweeping and vacuuming!
Taking advantage of a few simple tools and kitchen items will not only save you time, but in most cases save you money as well. You probably already have many of these items, and some have been ignored over the years, but if you revive or renew your use of these essential tools you will find cooking and cleanup time to be greatly reduced. Don’t be a slave to your kitchen, let your kitchen serve you!