There are plenty of kitchen gadgets you can find in the market and the truth is, you don’t have to own a gazillion kitchen gadgets and utensils to function properly in the kitchen when you’re preparing a meal. While these great tools make the work easier and faster, you also need to save money and space. Now there are plenty of these gadgets that help you save time and at the same time space and money. Let’s explore 20 of the best multi-function kitchen gadgets that you need in your kitchen!
Other Uses: Ice Cube Tray; Mini Meatloves
A muffin pan can be used to make mini meatloaves, used as a makeshift ice cube tray, or to make mini casseroles. If you ever need to portion and freeze things like soup, broth, or oatmeal, the muffin tin makes it easy (once frozen, remove the item from the tin and move it to a freezer bag to preserve freshness). It’s also perfect for serving condiments when you want to serve more than one but don’t want to do a sink full of dishes.
Other Uses: Bake Bread, Biscuit; Make Casserole; Cutting Corn off the Cob
Did you know that you can make more than just a Bundt cake in this specialized pan? Now you know! You can put biscuit dough in with some brown sugar, butter, and cream, and you’ve got some delicious caramel pull apart bread. You can make a fancy looking meatloaf, bake a loaf of bread, of make a casserole.
If you eat a lot of fresh corn on the cob, a Bundt pan is great for cutting the kernels off. Simply hold your corncob on the center and slice the kernels right off; they’ll fall directly in the pan, leaving less mess.
Other Uses: Slicing off Soft Fruits and Veggies
Let’s face it: you’re probably not slicing hard-boiled eggs on the daily. But that doesn’t mean your egg slicer should sit idly in a drawer. It can slice up soft fruits and veggies, like strawberries, mushrooms, and roasted beets, giving your dessert, entree, or salad a touch of gourmet flair.
Zipper Storage Bags
Other Uses: Piping Bag
You’re probably already aware of the versatility of these handy little zipper storage bags, from storing food in the freezer to keeping your PB&J sandwich fresh all day at work. But did you know that they’re also great for piping things like frosting and deviled egg filling? Just use a spatula to fill them up, snip off a corner, and squeeze.
Other Uses: Blend Spice, Sugar, or Nuts
A small coffee grinder is the perfect tool for grinding whole spices, as well as small amounts of nuts or seeds. Make spice mixes, or even turn granulated sugar into superfine sugar for whipped cream.
Other Uses: Slow Cooker
Ever wanted a slow cooker badly? You might already have one. Sort of. Your rice cooker can actually do a lot of the same things as a slow cooker, just with a slightly different technique. You probably can’t slow-roast a brisket, but you can make soups, stews, and oatmeal, as well as more complicated rice dishes right in the pot. And many rice cookers actually come with instructions on just how to do so.
Other Users: Steamer Basket, Ice Bucket
A colander makes a quick and easy steamer basket so that you don’t have to store two tools. Just get a pot that will fit your colander in and add your veggies to the colander. Simmer an inch of water and cover for a makeshift steamer. Just make sure your strainer is metal; plastic can melt or leach chemicals to your food when heated.
You can also use it as a better, less soggy ice bucket. Fill with ice, place it in a large bowl and add your beer/champagne/soda. When the ice starts to melt, it’ll drip through the colander and into the bowl underneath, keeping cans and bottles easier to handle.
Empty Wine Bottle
Other Uses: Rolling Pin; Meat Tenderizer; Candlestick Holder
An average Nigerian, who is used to making chin-chin can attest to this as a useful gadget in the kitchen. Before you stick that empty wine bottle in the recycling bin, consider a way you can recycle it right there in your kitchen. Thanks to its shape and weight, an empty wine bottle can easily double as a rolling pin. You can also use it to tenderize meat by gently pounding it with the bottom of the bottle. Finally, you can set the mood at your next dinner party by turning a few bottles into candlestick holders.
Ice Cube Trays
Other Uses: Freeze Stocks, Left-over Wine; Sauces
Freeze more than water with ice cube trays. Leftover wine, chicken stock, or tomato sauce can all be frozen in ice cube trays and popped into freezer bags for easy portions you can use any time. Have fresh herbs that you don’t know what to do with before they go bad? Chop and pop them in an ice cube tray and cover with water or olive oil. You can then use them in soups or sautés with no problem.
Other Uses: Shred Onions, Veggies
You probably use your box grater to grate cheese, but you can also use it to quickly shred onions and cabbage. Grate carrots, beets, sweet potatoes and other root vegetables for salads, quick stir fries and slaws. You can even use your box grater to grate frozen butter for a better piecrust.
Other Uses: Slice Zucchini; Cut Carrots; Shave Chocolate
A vegetable peeler is small and easy to store, and it has many more uses than just peeling potatoes and carrots. Use it to make “pasta” like sheets out of zucchini and carrots for raw salads. It’s also perfect for shaving chocolate for a cake topping or hard cheese for a salad or soup.
Other Uses: Open Difficult Lid
When the lid on that jar of pickles just won’t budge, and you’ve tried everything, including tapping the side with a spoon and digging your elbow into the top of it, reach for the dish-washing gloves. Even when you’re sure it’s not about traction, and that you simply do not have the strength to twist the lid, put on those gloves and try again. You’ll be surprised at how well this trick works.
Ice Cream Scoop
Other Uses: Scoop Cookie Dough, Cupcakes, Muffins, and Meatballs
An ice cream scoop can do more than just scoop out your favorite frozen treats. Small scoops can be used to portion out cookie dough, while a standard one is perfect for filling cupcake and muffin tins. It’s also perfect for making uniform meatballs.
Other Uses: Store Items; Cut Cookie/Biscuit Dough; Vase; Candleholder
Mason jars have come a long way since their canning origins. Use them to store just about anything, or as cute cocktail cups or candle holders or as a vase at your next party. But here’s a truly unexpected use: cut out cookies or biscuit dough using the mouth of the jar.
Other Uses: Cut Herbs, Doughs, Foods
A pizza cutter can be used to cut more than just pizza. Use it to quickly chop a few fresh herbs, cut piecrust or cookie dough into shapes, or to cut through birthday cake quickly and easily.
Got kids? A pizza cutter is a great way to cut pancakes, waffles, and other foods into bite sized pieces quickly so that you can enjoy your meal while it’s still hot.
Other Uses: Skewer; Drying Rack
Chopsticks can be used to stir drinks, as an impromptu skewer for meat or vegetables, or as a quick dish drying rack. Don’t have any clean tongs, but want to flip something in a hot pan? Chopsticks to the rescue. You can use them to pit cherries as well.
Other Uses: Bake Brownies, Cookies
Your waffle iron can do more than just make waffles. Grate some potatoes and make super quick hash browns, put some cookie dough in for fast cookies, or bake brownies. Just make sure to spray your iron with cooking spray or some foods may stick!
Other Uses: Pitting/Hulling Fruits; Suck Air
In addition to drinking, plastic straws are perfect for pitting cherries and olives or hulling strawberries. You can also use them to get the air out of a freezer bag as well. Simply put the straw in the bag with one end out and seal the bag around the straw. Suck the air out and watch the bag close around the food in the bag, just like an expensive vacuum sealer.
Other Uses: Chop Herbs, Green Onions; Cut/Trim Dough, Crust
Kitchen shears can be used for a multitude of things besides just cutting twine and cheesecloth. Use them to quickly chop herbs or green onions when you don’t want to get out a knife or chopping board. Use them to cut piecrust or pizza dough into smaller pieces, trim the edges of your pie, or even cut thin crust pizza into slices.
Other Uses: Cookie Cutter
Sometimes you just can’t find your big cookie cutter when you need it — it’s probably lost in that junk drawer. Anyway, in a pinch you can use a tea cup to cut out your cookies. Choose a thin walled tea cup, which has sharp sides to make cutting the cookies easier.