You can get by in the kitchen with very few tools, but what’s the fun in that? We’ve rounded up some kitchen gadgets that speed up meal prep, help you monitor and measure your food, and more.
Cooking is an immensely rewarding and enjoyable hobby to partake in. It’s a skill that impresses people, it provides you with tasty food, and it can even save you money (compared to continually splurging on takeout). So why not do a little more cooking (and have a little more fun with these handy gadgets)?
We’ve rounded up some of our favorite gadgets, all of which are priced under $50. They’re not all smart gadgets (not everything needs a Bluetooth radio) but they’re all very useful.
OXO 3-in-1 Good Grips Avocado Slicer ($10)
In 2018, the avocado continues to be everyone’s favorite ingredient that happens to be a fruit, despite often being treated like a vegetable. It’s still a little tricky to slice and dice, though. That’s where the OXO 3-in-1 Good Grips Avocado Slicer comes in handy. It’s an all-in-one tool that makes it easy to split, pit, and slice avocados without cutting your finger along the way. It’s also a super cheap addition to your kitchen gadget collection. Ok, so it’s not bluetooth enabled and there’s no LED screen telling you how many slices you’ve got, but sometimes the simplest solutions are the best.
Amazon Dash Wand with Alexa ($20)
Alexa is creeping into everything within the modern home, and for good reason. It’s pretty useful being able to ask Alexa various questions and have her help you out. Amazon Dash Wand with Alexa is the cheaper alternative to buying an Echo Dot for your kitchen.
You can use it to find recipes, convert measurements, discover nearby restaurants (if your cooking efforts have failed miserably), and even reorder essentials, via Amazon, of course. It offers a magnetic back so you can stick it on your fridge for easy access at all times. Then, simply say or scan a barcode and you can add an item to your Amazon shopping cart.
Amazon Fresh comes with a little bit of a premium but the convenience is tough to beat.
LauKingdom BBQ Meat Claws ($10)
These Meat Claws make shredding meat a heck of a lot of fun. Simply hold onto them and get shredding, while experiencing a hint of what it’d be like to be Wolverine.
Bear paw shaped, you can dig into meat and carry hot food around without risking dropping it or burning your hands. It’ll rip apart pork, chicken, beef, brisket, turkey, and pretty much any meat imaginable, all in lightning fast time. Most importantly, it’s a far more satisfying way of doing things than simply carving the old fashioned way. It’s a fun cross between a novelty gadget and something that’s genuinely useful.
LauKingdom BBQ Accessories, Grill Accessories Set Grill Glove - Ideal Barbecue Tool for Backyard Outdoor Camping Tailgating Grilling
NutriChef Smart Bluetooth BBQ Grill Thermometer ($25)
Setting the temperature on your oven and walking away is so 20th century. Now, you can keep an eye on the temperature of your meal at all times. Even if you’re cooking up a BBQ outdoors. The NutriChef Smart Bluetooth BBQ Grill Thermometer is easy to use. Just place the probe and cable in the meat before leaving it in the oven or on the grill. The cable is heat proof so you don’t have to worry about any accidents.
Via your smartphone and the companion app, you’ll be sent a push notification when the meat reaches the desired temperature. The app offers up favorite recipes and plenty of ways of tweaking the temperature so your steak will always be cooked just how you like it. There’s an outdoor wireless range of over 150 feet too, so you can mingle at the party without stressing.
NutriChef Smart Bluetooth BBQ Thermometer - Upgraded Stainless Probe Safe to Leave in Grill, Outdoor Barbecue or Meat Smoker - Wireless Remote Alert iOS Android Phone WiFi App - PWIRBBQ40
Crock-Pot 6-Quart Programmable Cook & Carry Slow Cooker ($35)
Your $50 budget won’t allow for fanciest Crock-Pots out there, which offers smart features and Bluetooth, but that doesn’t mean you have to go without. The Crock-Pot 6-Quart Programmable Cook & Carry Slow Cooker is a great introduction to the joys of slow cooking. You can feed up to 7 people easily and the timer functions saves you from checking on it frequently.
Such timer functions let you program cook times from anywhere between 30 minutes right up to 20 hours. Once your meal is cooked, it switches automatically to a Warm setting ensuring the food is toasty at the right time. It’s even easy to transport thanks to a quick locking gasket lid.
While you’re saving up for the $100 you need for the Crock-Pot Wemo Smart Wifi-Enabled Slow Cooker, this one will do you just fine.
Crock-Pot SCCPVL610-S-A 6-Quart Cook & Carry Programmable Slow Cooker with Digital Timer, Stainless Steel
Perfect Bake 2.0 Smart Scale ($20)
For the keen baker, Perfect Bake 2.0 Smart Scale lives up to its name. Simply pour in the ingredients and the scales figures things out for you. Poured too much? The Perfect Bake app will automatically adjust to ‘fix’ your recipe, auto-scaling for different quantities. A virtual bowl on screen gives you a head’s up on how you’re doing with your pouring.
The companion app offers up over 300 chef-tested recipes, as well as the option to add your own. There’s a Pantry feature too so you can see exactly what to make with what’s available to you. Distinctly colorful, it’s a pretty cute package that also packs a punch when it comes to boosting your productivity.
IDAODAN Digital Kitchen Food Scale ($30)
For those less interested in baking and more interested in weight loss and nutrition, the IDAODAN Digital Kitchen Food Scale has you covered. Place any item on the scale, enter what the food is on the smartphone app, and you’ll get feedback on the weight as well as the amount of proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, fiber, cholesterol, vitamins, calcium and other nutrients in the food.
While clearly health-oriented, if you decide the tracking your fiber and vitamin intake via scale isn’t worth it anymore, you can always go back to using it as a plain old kitchen scale and weigh out the ingredients for a batch of brownies.