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We all fancy ourselves somewhere between take out menu ninjas and kitchen wizards. The truth is though, just like the best ninjas and wizards, we’re nothing without our swords and wands. And so as we attempt to figure out what the heck we’re doing when we cook anything more complicated than pasta, it’s time to invest in a few new essential gadgets. The best cooks aren’t any better than the rest of us, they just know how to work with what they have! Check out more of Aly’s awesome work at
Berry Breeze ($50, BerryBreeze.com)
A small, battery-operated machine that lives in your refrigerator and extends the life of fresh produce and leftovers. It emits a consistent level of activated oxygen to neutralize bacteria by inhibiting ethylene gas that triggers decay. Plus, it deodorizes the fridge as it works. Win-win, right?!
Bella 6QT Pressure Cooker ($80, Macys.com)
While we love our slow cookers for delicious meals cooked low and slow all day, sometimes you need that flavor, fast. A pressure cooker is also a kitchen must have, it cooks 70% faster than conventional cooking. Use the sauté options to brown meats, too. It’s also programmable to start up to 20 hours ahead of time, so simply set and go.
Bonne O ($150, Bonneo.com)
A sparkling beverage system, this is the first of its kind without a CO2 tank. It can sparkle everything from liquor, herbs, fruit, coffee, etc. and pressure infuses as it works.
Mastrad Deco Veggie-Slicer With 2 Blades ($10, Mastrad-Paris.us)
We all want to eat healthier, but lets face – veggies are pretty boring. Make vegetables interesting and fun as you aspire to eat healthy. This tool lets you create decorative salads with carrot tagliatelle strips and cucumber spirals. Replace pasta with carrot spaghetti, zucchini tagliatelle or potato ribbons. This comes with stackable slicing blades: one ribbon and one tagliatelle (1/3-inch/8-mm) and a tapered cleaning brush.
< 6 Qt. Smart Slow Cooker with WeMo ($129.99, Sears.com)
We’ve been obsessed with slow cookers for a while now – it’s a great way to dump a bunch of ingredients in the pot, set the temperature, and leave it for the day. But it can be even better. The Crock-Pot Smart Slow Cooker is WeMo enabled and works with your phone to let you adjust cook settings from anywhere. So, stay out at the bar for one more drink, your dinner will still be perfect and waiting for you when you arrive home. Science is awesome.
Drop ($100, GetDrop.com)
Every kitchen geek needs this. The connected kitchen scale and recipe app takes the guesswork out of prepping and cooking the dishes that look way better in the recipe than on our plate. Unlike static kitchen scales, this one will guide you through the scale, which is connected to the app. It’s sort of like an electronic sous chef.
Excalibur 6-Tray Stackable Dehydrator EPD60W ($39.95, ExcaliburHydrator.com)
You don’t know you need a food dehydrator, but once you have one, you won’t know how you lived without one. This one comes with vented see-through lid, which allows you to monitor the dehydration process, while you make healthy and natural snacks like fruit & vegetables chips, fruit roll-ups, yogurts, beef jerky, dried herbs, pet treats and more.
Spice Lab Salt Plate ($60, TheSpiceLab.com)
A salt plate is a great addition to any kitchen. If can be used hot or cold – as a warmer plate or to cook tableside or on the grill. Or freeze it and serve ice cream, chocolates or chill to serve sushi or cheeses.
Keurig KOLD ($369, Keurig.com)
Keurig launched this new spin on their pod machines, which allows you to make cold drinks at the touch of a button. A great way to de-clutter your pantry and refrigerator of cans and bottles, and also have all sorts of cold beverages and cocktail mixers at the ready for your next party.
Lagostina Pastaiola 6 Qt. Pasta Set $250, Bloomingdales.com)
Handcrafted in Italy, this set includes everything you need for whipping up a delicious pasta dinner (6-quart pot, strainer, spaghetti measure and pasta fork). If you love enjoying pasta night, this will make it feel way more elegant.
4-in-1 Extreme Magic Opener ($24.99, Magicopener.com)
Solves the problem of ‘how am I going to get this damn thing open’ with a single gadget that makes quick work of opening metal bottle caps, plastic screw caps, aluminum pull-tabs and even soup-type cans. Roughly the size a small wrench, this multi-purpose opener features multiple gear-like ‘grabbers’ on the underside designed for different types and sizes of bottles and cans. It’s not only portable (better for traveling) but also fits easily in a drawer and is magnetized for attachment to the refrigerator.
Nutri Ninja Auto-iQ Pro Compact System ($150, Kohls.com)
Everyone is trying to eat healthier, and a tool like this goes a long way, offering vitamin extraction and high performance all in one machine. Use it to crush ice for drinks (hey, we don’t have to always be healthy), or make fruit or vegetables smoothies.
Tupperware Microwave Breakfast Maker ($25, Tupperware.com)
Ideal for people that have small kitchens or hate doing dishes, this can create anything from omelets to French toast in the microwave!
Nomiku Sous Vide ($200, nomiku.com)
If you watch a lot of food TV, sous vide is the current coolest gadget of celeb chefs, and this is the smallest and most powerful sous vide immersion circulator. Basically, you put a vacuum-sealed ingredient into a temperature controlled water bath. The heat from the water gently cooks your food. A perfect medium-rare steak for instance, is cooked at 57C for about an hour. Once you cut into it, the steak is perfect pink medium rare from edge to edge; all you need to do is drop in your steak with your favorite seasonings and you’re good to go! This applies for anything from fish to veggies to fruit, to even cocktails and ice creams.
Simplehuman Steel Frame Dishrack ($80, Simplehuman.com)
Fantasize about a dish rack that will do all of the drying for you? It actually exists. This one has a swivel spout that pivots so you can drain waiter directly into the sink. Bonus: The dish rack also includes a wine glass holder that will hold up to four glasses for maximum drying without the worry of breakage.