The Five Most-Used Tools in Our Busy Kitchen

The Five Most-Used Tools in Our Busy Kitchen

Zach and I often joke that we prep dinner like we’re on the set of a cooking competition show, with a 30-minute clock and four of the pickiest judges this side of Gordon Ramsey. To get the job done, we have narrowed our kitchen tools to the most essential, most effective and most durable products that can help us cook tasty food fast. Here are our top five.

Duralex Nesting Bowls

We put these on our wedding registry, cough, 16 years ago, cough, and it should tell you something that they are still offered by Crate & Barrel. They are very durable, and with 10 different sizes, you always have the one you need.

Lodge Pan Scrapers

Yes, I have a pan scraper on this list … When you do a lot of dishes, you need tools to help make the job easier. This one helps immensely. It scrapes that sticky food off of pans and bowls, and the scraper itself always washes clean easily.

All-Silicon Ultimate Spatula

I picked up this bad boy on a whim at Williams-Sonoma one day. I was shopping for something else, of course, when one of the helpful salespeople suggested I get this spatula, and I am so glad he did. It’s solid on the handle, bendy at the tip. I find it to be the perfect spatula for eggs, but I like it so much that I use it for most spatula-related cooking.

Ballarini Nonstick Skillet

You guys, this pan is not a looker, but man is it good. I begrudgingly got this when I couldn’t stand scraping another egg off of my shiny stainless skillets any longer. Zach had been trying to convince me of Ballarini’s magic for a while, even sending me this glowing review from The New York Times, but I was still reluctant because it looked so commercial (and I already felt like we operated a commercial kitchen; I didn’t want it to look like one too!). But I caved, and it’s amazing. It’s truly the workhorse in our kitchen. It cooks evenly, washes brilliantly and is inexpensive.

All-Clad Stainless Steel Colander

This 5-quart colander was another gift from our wedding registry, and would you believe me if I told you that it still looks new (and we use it several times a week)? It’s true. It always washes up so nicely and has outlasted other, less expensive, less durable colanders.

The Best Paper Napkins

We may not be the most environmentally-sensitive family, but for time and sanity purposes, we use paper napkins for dinner each night. Over the years, I have become picky about which paper napkins I use. I prefer a thick napkin that doesn’t fall apart when using it. Most grocery store brands tend to break easily. Ikea, I’ve found, has amazing paper napkins that always look nice and hold up well. When we make a trip to Ikea, I stock up on 10+ packages of these. At $2.49 for 100 napkins, I sometimes even justify a trip to Ikea just for the napkins. 🙂

Which kitchen tools get the most use in your house?

P.S. Our favorite everyday glassware, and the food that I eat every single day.

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