A gift certificate for a plant based cooking class makes a great father's day gift!

5 Kitchen Tools I’d Rather Not Live Without

22 May 2023

As you may know by now, I’m a practical dietitian.   (Challenge me to make a meal using what I find in your kitchen!).  These are the “nice to have” items that seem to make healthy cooking so easy and fun:

Nordic Ware Naturals Baker's Half Sheet

Forget those ridiculous “non-stick” cookie sheets.  These are the best!  They are perfect for everything from roasting vegetables to baking cookies. And they are way more non-stick than the others. No need for those chemical nonstick sprays. I sometimes use a little spray oil and sometimes nothing at all.

Chef'n FreshForce Plus Citrus Squeezer

My mom gave me this juicer as a gift 20 years ago and I thought it would be a waste of space in my already-crowded kitchen drawer.  It has turned out to be a favorite gadget - no electricity required!  It makes fresh lemon juice so easy, and Chef'n totally stands behind their product.  When one of the tines broke off, I called Chef'n and they sent me a new one! It's such a sturdy tool (don't go for one of the cheapy knock-offs) that makes squeezing lemons fun. You'll be adding antioxidants to your food all the time!

Natural Home Stainless Steel Compost Bin 

It’s classy enough to sit on my countertop, and the filter in the lid (replaceable, and I’ve also washed them in the dishwasher) successfully seals in odor.  Where food waste is concerned, reduction and reuse are the first line of defense, but when you do have scraps, it’s nice to know you can keep them out of the waste stream and contribute to soil health.  I compost in my backyard.  Please reach out if you have questions on that!

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker

While this appliance takes up a lot of space, it's worth it.  It makes rice fool-proof and brings dried beans into my wheelhouse by making them quick and needing no attention.  I regularly use my instant pot for perfectly baked potatoes (white or sweet), to steam homemade seitan cutlets, and when whipping up a quick vegan chili. I also appreciate the quality of a stainless-steel bowl; it's so easy to clean.

Vitamix 5200 Blender Professional-Grade, 64 oz Container 

I happily used the basic Oster (glass jug) blender for many years, but I finally broke down and spent the big bucks for a Vitamix. I love it so much and use it daily (sometimes more than once a day).  It's great for soups, sauces, smoothies (of course!) and makes almost everything creamy and delicious.  You can even use it to "rice" cauliflower (if you follow my Instagram, you’ll know I also tried ricing kale stems)!  Did I mention it’s self-cleaning? Incidentally, I paid $289 for it (lifetime guarantee!) but I see it’s now closer to $500 now, so you may want to wait for a sale.

Bonus Item - or not:  Cuisinart One Handle Can Opener 

I found this can opener at Home Goods many years back and it is small, sturdy, and dependable. It makes opening a can easy, plus it pries rather than cutting, leaving no sharp edges. Unfortunately, I can’t find it available anywhere online. I’m just sharing a link for a similar one that might make you just as happy.

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