Stuff We Love
15 Products That Make Cooking So Much Better
These helpful gadgets cut down on prep, save space and make your time spent in the kitchen feel so much more fun.
From deciding what to eat to prepping the ingredients to getting dinner to the table on time, there’s a lot that goes into cooking. Thankfully, these fun kitchen gadgets help you whip up any dish like a pro—no matter your skill level.
Psst…Need a little extra help in the kitchen? Check out these timeless cooking tips from grandma. ‘Cause you know she knows best.
Picnic-Ready Slow Cooker
This handy cooler-style slow cooker ($60) has a flip-up handle that makes taking it from the kitchen to the car to the picnic a breeze. The locking lid has a clear top so you can keep your eye what’s simmering inside, and the front-facing wipe-off whiteboard label is perfect for letting guests know exactly what it is they’re dishing up (like any of these slow-cooker potluck favorites).
Mini Waffle Maker
Sometimes you just want a little something sweet in the morning—and this adorable mini-size waffle maker ($10) toasts up just the right size. It’s perfect for making this scaled-down version of chicken and waffles, a side of hashbrowns or even a itty-bitty biscuit pizza.
When you’ve decided which of these incredible avocado recipes to make tonight, make the prep easier than ever with this 3-in-1 avocado tool ($10). It effortlessly slices, peels and even helps easily remove an avocado’s pit in a snap, so you can get to enjoying the creamy green goodness faster than ever.
Can’t figure out what to make for dinner tonight? Foodie Dice ($24) is here to help indecisive cooks everywhere! This fun wooden dice set lets you roll to land on a protein, herb, seasonal veggie, grain and cooking ingredient to create up to 186,000 fresh and simple meal combinations. Don’t feel like rolling the dice? Pick from any of these 100 five-ingredient recipes, and you can’t go wrong.
A mini kitchen torch ($18) is useful for so much more than adding a little caramel-y crisp to your favorite creme brulee recipe (but, hey, it makes it extra delicious, too). You can also use it to char vegetables, add color and caramelization to sous vide cooking or make your homemade mac ‘n’ cheese all beautifully browned and bubbly on top. Plus, it’s just a whole lot of fun to use.
Compact Air Fryer
Air fryers are the hottest kitchen appliance around right now, but have you seen ’em in person? They’re huge! This mini-sized version ($61) takes up a fraction of the space, and it’s just plain adorable. It’s got 1.2 liters of space, so there’s still plenty of room to make a pound of healthified, crispy French fries, a dozen chicken wings and much more.
A sprinkle of fresh-snipped herbs makes almost anything taste better, but they can be kind of a pain to chop into itty-bitty pieces. These genius kitchen shears ($10) have five stainless steel blades, so they can mince and chop green onions, cilantro, chives, dill and more in a breeze. Use them with any of these irresistible recipes for fresh-herb lovers.
When strawberry season rolls around, you just can’t seem to get enough of their juicy goodness in anything from fresh pies to bright salads. This StemGem strawberry huller ($10) makes prepwork a cinch—just insert it in the top, twist and the stem and core are pulled out in an instant. Sweet!
The little metal loops in this handy wire whisk ($16) help it work 80% more efficiently than regular whisks, making it easier than ever to whip up the fluffiest-ever scrambled eggs, airy meringues or super smooth gravy.
A little spice is nice, but getting fiery jalapeno juices all over your fingers when prepping your favorite salsa can lead to seriously painful results. This helpful jalapeno corer ($8) effortlessly scoops and deseeds the insides of your peppers so you don’t have to get in there and touch the spicy interior. Plus, it leaves the pepper whole (but cored), so making homemade jalapeno poppers just got even more enticing.
Bacon is undoubtedly one of life’s greatest pleasures, but when it gets all curled up and fatty on the ends, it can be a real bummer. This bacon press ($14) holds down the slices in your skillet to keep those curls at bay, leaving you with uniformly flat, perfectly crisp bacon that’s great on its own, or in any of these ultimate bacon-lovers’ recipes.
Flour-Shaking Rolling Pin
This double-duty rolling pin ($27) not only helps you create the smoothest pie crusts and perfect cut-out cookies (its ceramic construction helps keep the dough from sticking), but its hollow core is the perfect place to store extra flour. Need to sprinkle a little more on your pastry mat? Just shake through the holed end and keep on rollin’.
A diet rich in leafy greens is so good for you, but stripping the goodness from the stem can be a stressful chore. This handheld greens stripper ($8) has four holes on each side, where you can insert kale, swiss chard, collard greens or woody herbs and simply pull to remove the leaves from the stem. What’s more, the curved side acts as an herb chopper to make quick prepwork with one tool.
At first sight, the Drop Scale ($80) looks like any other digital scale on the market, but using its compatible app on your smartphone or tablet transforms it into a brilliant tool for baking and cooking. Simply pull up a recipe, pour in its ingredients, and the app will tell you when to stop, so each ingredient is perfectly measured by weight as you go. It’s the foolproof answering to whipping up nearly anything in your kitchen, but is a true game-changer when baking, where measuring flour by weight is best practice.
Multipurpose Hand Blender
An immersion blender itself is an amazingly functional tool that can help create the creamiest butternut squash bisque or whir up a delicious morning smoothie. But when it functions as a food chopper and a hand-mixer, as well? That’s space-saving brilliance, friends. This 3-in-1 version has three speeds and comes with a BPA-free blending jar and handy storage bag, too.
Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Taste of Home editors, who aim to highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We welcome your feedback. Have something you think we should know about? Contact us, here.