14 Unusual Kitchen Gadgets I Use Daily

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Unusual Kitchen Tools that I cant live without
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The other day, I was informed by my four-year-old that I am “so old” now. Granted, she gives this label to anyone over the age of 12, but it made me think about how things have changed since I “got old.” I realized that I’ve simplified so much of my life over the last decade. I use the same ingredients like bentonite clay for washing my hair, detoxing my armpits and making tooth powder.

I use coconut oil for practically everything. I’ve also simplified my wardrobe and my kitchen tools lately (now to just simplify the shoes…)

When I first got married, I practically collected kitchen gadgets and dishes because I was just learning to cook and I loved experimenting. Now, I have worked to simplify and reduce the number of tools and gadgets in my kitchen and I’m left with wonderfully half-empty drawers and cabinets that only contain the tools I really use.

These are 14 of the kitchen gadgets and tools that made the cut and that I use daily, take on vacation and couldn’t cook without… In fact, I could probably cook practically anything with just these items:

Stainless Steel Table Pans

When we had our third child, regular baking sheets started becoming too small. I found these stainless steel table pans that are used for catering and in restaurants.

They are perfect for everything from roasting a turkey to preparing pounds of roasted vegetables to making a 12-pound meatloaf to serve 30+ people (did that last night).

I can prepare an entire meal with two of these by making meat in one dish and roasted vegetables in another and they are ready at the same time. I typically also use these to make double of a meal so we have another meal of leftovers.

These are steel, not aluminum like most baking pans, and have a much deeper lip so spilling isn’t an issue. I’ve donated all of my other baking pans and ONLY use these now. Even better, they stack and store very minimally.

I even bring them when we go on vacation. Best $20 I’ve ever spent.

Kitchen Shears

Kitchen scissors are much more useful than they get credit for. Besides opening packages and cutting up a chicken, they make preparing food for small children so much faster. I use them at every meal to cut up meat and vegetables for my babies and toddlers.


Kitchen tongs are another multi-use kitchen gadget. They can be used for stirring, tossing, salad serving, grilling, sautéing and so much more.

Immersion Blender

A good immersion blender replaces a blender, whisk and various other kitchen tools. It can be used to make butter coffee in the morning, whisk foods or blend sauces, or even make homemade whipped cream. It also stores easily in a small drawer (unlike a blender). We still have a Blendtec and love it, but I use the immersion blender more often.

Oven Gloves

These oven gloves replace hot pads and kitchen mits and store very minimally. They also work for grilling and are perfect for wearing while cooking with a cast iron pan.

A Great Knife

A friend introduced me to Wusthof knives. They are pricy, but these three knives have replaced my entire knife block and they also store minimally in a single drawer. Another great option are these knives that offer a lifetime warranty.

Mason Jars

As drinking glasses, food storage, vases, candle holders, for canning, salad in a jar, and so much more… mason jars can replace so many other kitchen containers.

Cuppow Lids

Cuppow lids turn mason jars into an easy no-spill drinking cup.

Cast Iron Skillet

It would be possible to cook almost every meal with just a cast iron skillet if needed. It can be used stove top, in the oven or even on a campfire. Once you season it correctly, a cast iron skillet is relatively non-stick and lasts forever.

Huck Towels

These huck towels have replaced all of my kitchen towels and napkins. They are much more absorbent than regular kitchen towels, easy to wash and work as cloth napkins as well. They even use these in hospitals to clean up blood because they work so well.

Steel Bowls

A set of stainless steel bowls replaced all of my glass, plastic and silicon bowls that I used to use. They stack and store together and since they have a lid, they work for food storage as well.

Stainless Steel Dishes

With kids, glass dishes never work well. We’d broken about half of our glass wedding dishes when we finally switched to stainless steel dishes for the kids. Now, we have a stash of steel plates, bowls and cups that we use daily. They are dishwasher and oven safe and don’t break!

Bamboo Utensils

Our simple set of bamboo utensils replaced all of the plastic utensils we used to have and they work so much better.

Crinkle Cutter

An unusual kitchen tool and one of my favorites. A crinkle cutter is safe for the kids to use to help me chop vegetables for meals, which helps keep them involved and makes them more likely to want to eat what we’ve made.

I’d love to know- what kitchen tools can you not live without?

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. WellnessMama.com is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


49 responses to “14 Unusual Kitchen Gadgets I Use Daily”

  1. Anne-Michelle Avatar

    I would add a melon baller with a handle, so the food item springs out easily. I use it for cookie batter, uniform snack balls, pancake batter, etc.

  2. Christy Avatar

    Thanks for your list. Mine includes a large salad spinner, because I grow my own lettuce and spinach, it is indispensable. I also love my new ceramic fry pans with cool handles, nothing sticks and cleanup is a breeze. Don’t have an immersion blender, but think I will have to get one.

  3. Berry Avatar

    Great list–I would add at least two good quality silicon spatulas.

  4. Arkay Avatar

    Your suggestions are perfect for stocking a Recreational Vehicle’s (or boat) galley. The only additions would be some Pyrex or Corning baking dishes for the smaller RV’s convection/microwave oven, where it does not have a cooktop/oven combo. After downsizing our galley for fulltiming, I see a bit more downsizing is in order. Won’t be giving up either of the two immersion blenders, though…

  5. Jodi Avatar

    Wexinheriten my mother-in-law’s antique juicer and I don’t know how I lived without it!! Our staple drink is home made lemonade with Stevia. Great for fasts, liver detoxing and my 9 year old daughter feels like she’s getting a treat every night. We had stopped drinking juice because most of it is made from concentrate and loaded with high fructose corn syrup. The juicer could not be easier to use, is stainless steel and cleans up well and allows us to have fresh squeezed juice any time. We simply cut a piece of fruit in half and put it on a little removable come shaped platform and compress the handle. It’s hydraulic and does not need electricity to run. Ann the junk stays on the outside of the come which is perforated with tiny holes for pure juice to go through. You can put your glad right under ‘neath and have your very own made-to-order glass of OJ with no sugar or additives.

    We also inherited a set of cast iron pans which work for everything from healthy frittatas to a whole roasted chicken with veggies. They heat up evenly and are well seasoned so nothing sticks, making clean up almost embarrassingly easy!!!

    It goes without saying how much better these “old school” kitchen tools save time and work better that the new breed of appliances! (I consider them “before my time” so I don’t feel old!! Haha!!)

  6. chantel Avatar

    I have to agree about kitchen scissors. I never used them growing up but my husband’s family introduced me to using scissors in the kitchen. We have about 8 pairs in the kitchen drawer and honestly we use all of them. They just come in so handy for everything!

  7. ChristineG Avatar

    I was wondering about the huck towels. Do you find they crease at the edges? I have been frustrated for decades by my cloth napkins (and some of my dishtowels) that get permanently scrunched at the edges. I’ve just always put up with it, but wonder if the huck towels might be better.

  8. Kate Avatar

    I would love to know more about your recently simplified wardrobe. As a new mom, your pointers would be appreciated.

  9. Sarah Mueller Avatar
    Sarah Mueller

    Thank you so much for the link to the large baking pans! I am constantly overfilling my baking trays and this is a perfect solution for this problem.

  10. Kanika Avatar

    Everything is messed up in our kitchen. I didn’t know that only 14 tools can also be used in kitchen. That sounds so simple.

    “Simple answers for healthier families” you seriously stand in your words.

  11. Pam Moore Avatar
    Pam Moore

    I use my iron skillets every single day. I have one of those padded covers for the handle of the skillets that is one of the best things I’ve ever bought. I also love my lidded Pyrex bowls.

    1. Kiona Avatar

      So why stainless steel compared to glass, ceramic, or other materials *besides plastic*?

  12. Allen Root Avatar
    Allen Root

    I endorse and use all but a couple of your listed items. I”m going tocheck out huck towels. My can’t do without? a set of All Clad cookware. I use wooden and bamboo utensils almost exclusively. When there is the rare stuck-on remnant, a 5 minute soak with hot water, some soap, maybefollowed by a scour with cream of tarter and a sponge. The 16 yr old surfaces are pristine!

  13. ChristineG Avatar

    I’m really interested in the Huck towels — my cloth napkins have been driving me nuts forever with the way the edges permanently bunch up and curl. Do these towels stay nice and flat with repeated, hot washings or have you found they crease easily?

  14. Wendy Avatar

    I have recently discovered the pineapple corer! OMG! Wish I would’ve bought one sooner!!

  15. Maria Avatar

    My most treasured kitchen item is a large heavy wooden chopping block. More than just for cutting on … Pastry, dough, pasta, scone, bread etc working … And serving fruit and cheese and , and, and. Never any material than wood.

    1. Pythia Avatar

      Great addition! Where did you get your chopping board? Many are bambo and made in places where I would not prefer to buy. Thank you in advance for your source.

    2. Maria Turner Avatar
      Maria Turner

      I bought it from a local craftsman who lives nearby. I don’t know where you live but I’m on the Mornington Peninsulia which is in Victoria Australia. He uses wood which would otherwise be not commercially viable. Maybe your best bet would be an Internet search for a maker or a really good kitchen supply outlet . Mine was not cheap but I’ve had it for years. Happy hunting and cooking.

  16. Meg Avatar

    Great list!! I’ve found so many useful gadgets for cooking/beauty from your site. Keep it up! 🙂

  17. Bre Avatar

    I have this immersion blender and love it. Unfortunately the cup that came with it is plastic and scratches with use.
    Do you typically use it with a glass jar (to avoid splashing). If so, what size? Thanks!!

  18. LaDonna Avatar

    I love your list! Thank you for sharing. I am trying to convert all of our plastic dishes with stainless steel and glass, for better health, and so your listing of items is nice since it’s so hard to find ones just by typing in the words without knowing which ones are the best. Another thing to add to your list that I don’t know how I lived without all these years, is a hand held reamer to juice lemons, limes, grapefruit etc. Also the pineapple slicer https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000GA53CO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000GA53CO&linkCode=as2&tag=wellnessmama-20&linkId=6S6O2D6ILVRUQUQE. Love them! Also very cheap purchases to add to your kitchen gadgets…ones that will get used rather than site in a drawer or cabinet.

  19. Melissa P. Avatar
    Melissa P.

    I just received my Cuisinart Smart Stick yesterday. I’ve already used it twice today. Love it!!!!

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