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    29 Kitchen Items To Consider If You're Ready To Try Cooking Again

    If at first you don't succeed, and at second it's even worse, just dust yourself off and try again.

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    1. A jar-opening gadget to help you crack open that jar of pasta sauce with little to no effort. You can affix this under your cabinets, so it's perfect for small kitchens where storage space is limited. It'll come in especially handy if you're following a Tasty video and need your jar opened quickly before the next step in the recipe.

    a reviewer photo of someone demonstrating how to use the jar opener with a mason jar

    Promising review: "I have tried a million different tools and gadgets for help in opening jars of all sizes, and each one had its own issues! Finally, someone has invented the perfect jar opener that is simple and requires no space in your kitchen drawers or counters." —cat lover

    Get it from Amazon for $14.65.

    2. A strainer that'll clip onto your pot and make it that much easier to drain your pasta. And yes, you may wonder how anyone could possibly mess up draining pasta — from personal experience, it is possible.

    a reviewer photo of someone straining a pot of pasta

    Promising review: "I cannot say enough good about this strainer. It fits all my pots, from small to huge and even frying pans! I have strainers, colanders, every kind of lid converter...this strainer is the best ever. When the pot is too heavy for me to hold to drain off the water, with this I can still hold on with both hands, and then when it is mostly drained, I set the pot in the sink to continue to drain. Washes up like a dream or you can toss in the dishwasher. I do not know how I lived without this strainer. Now I can get rid of probably 20 items out of my kitchen!" —SGA

    Get it from Amazon for $13.99+ (available in five colors).

    3. A 7-piece cookware set because nothing inspires you to give cooking another try like needing an excuse to use your beautiful new nonstick ceramic pan. This cookware set has everything you need to make a variety of dishes,

    @caraway_home / Via, @caraway_home / Via

    The set comes with a sauté pan ready to make the perfect fried eggs or sautéed veggies, a sauce pan for mac and cheese and sauces, a sauté pan perfect for stir-fries, and a dutch oven that'll be your go-to for pastas, roasts, and more.

    Promising review: "This set o’ pots and pans is wondrous. Perfect for beginner chefs and the roll up your sleeves 'I know what I’m doing' type. Even cooking temperatures throughout. I knows this because I’ve hunted for the cold spots and they simply don’t exist. The design is miraculously minimal yet somehow reminiscent of something my grandmother would have been seen using (ergo; timeless). If you couldn’t tell already, I dig these ladies, as will you. Take care of them and they’ll take care of you. 10/10 would recommend." —Joe

    Get it from Caraway for $395 (available in eight colors).

    4. A sushi making kit — ambitious, I know — but imagine how fancy you'll feel when set out your perfect rolls.,

    Promising review: "This sushi kit is awesome. Such a game changer for making sushi at home. It has everything you need to make some quality rolls better than a restaurant. It has been a lifesaver during the pandemic when I need to get my sushi fix!! The knife is really sharp, and the avocado slicer is key!! Highly recommended!!!" —sasha

    Get it from Amazon for $15.95.

    5. An automatic pan stirrer with a timer perfect for people who have ruined many meals by getting sidetracked by TikTok videos. You can set a timer for this stirrer so you can have less chance of your food burning.

    the automatic stirrer in a pan
    Uncommon Goods

    Promising review: "My husband loves to cook. We have two very small children, so while his meals are mostly yummy, they are also sometimes burnt. :) This was perfect for him. He's able to turn it on, run into the next room to save the day with a plastic bag and a washcloth for whatever blowout-esque mess I'm dealing with, forget he's cooking, run back into the kitchen frantically when he remembers, and arrive only to find the meal practically cooking itself. Best. Gift. Ever." —Jake the ChefturnedDaddy

    Get it from Uncommon Goods for $25.

    6. A Chefman air fryer that makes for the perfect set it and forget it kitchen device. Add your ingredients, set the temp and a timer, and let the air fryer do the rest of the work. (Pssst, there are so many recipes on Tasty!)

    the air fryer with the tray pulled out to show freshly made golden brown potatoes

    Promising review: "I love this air fryer! First of all, it’s very easy to use and it makes everything come out perfectly, especially French fries, but I’ve used it for biscuits, baked potatoes, chicken name it. It’s smaller but will handle enough fries for two people, two large chicken breasts, 4–5 biscuits, etc. It’s a perfect size for my already crowded RV counter. I’m really choosy about what gets counter space and this has become my go-to. Additionally, it’s only 700 watts so it doesn’t tax my already delicate 30 amp system. Lastly, while it does put off a little heat when in use, it’s nothing like what happens when I use the gas stove/oven on my RV, which can raise the interior temps by up to 20 degrees, yikes!! If you are looking for the perfect size for an RV, this is honestly perfect!" —J. Harmon

    Get it from Amazon for $29.99 (available in two styles).

    7. A mess-free storage bin with a spout because I, too, am one of those people who spills rice all over the counter every time. This container is clutch because not only does it have an easy pour spout, but it also comes with a measuring cup.


    Promising review: "Love these sooo much I bought three! I use them to hold rice, homemade breadcrumbs, and coconut flour. The caps make a nice airtight lid and they're very convenient to use, always right where I need them to be. The sizing on the bin itself is a little tall, so I store these lying down in my cabinets, otherwise, they don't fit. If you are looking for something to store your grains/powders/crumbs/seeds/cereal/whatever in, these bins are AWESOME." —Chris

    Get it from Amazon for $13.51.

    8. Some silicone stretch lid covers if you want a reusable solution for your leftovers because cooking in bulk makes it easier to meal prep.

    a bowl with the stretch lid on the left and on the right is a bowl with plastic wrap that is not holding tight like the stretch lid

    Promising review: "This is truly an amazing replacement for plastic wrap or other covers that are not eco-friendly! And it saves you money in the long run! You can throw them in the fridge/freezer/microwave because they are made out of the most kitchen/earth-friendly material...silicone! Plus, they're easy to clean, easy to use, and durable as hell!" —Tammy Cardona-Zambeis

    Get a pack of six from Amazon for $10.99.

    9. An angry mama microwave cleaner for when the "soften butter" instruction goes horribly wrong. Just fill mama with water and vinegar, and pop her in the microwave. She'll get mad, blow her top, and leave your microwave looking brand new. Ready to try that butter again?

    Promising review: "I was skeptical at first buying this, but this is AWESOME. It works like a charm. Super easy to use and does exactly what it says. It made my microwave look brand new again. Highly recommend." —Lisa

    Get it from Amazon for $8.99 (available in four colors).

    10. An extra-large spatula that'll wow your in-laws the next time they come over for a visit and you plate their perfect salmon in one piece.

    Hand using the blue extra-large spatula to flip an omelette and a piece of salmon

    Promising review: "I needed something to flip a Thai omelette, cooked in a half-inch of oil. I could never get the omelet out in one piece — this spatula does the trick. It is quite thin and flexible at the tip, which worked for my purposes to go tightly down the side of the pan." —Kaye

    Get it from Amazon for $12.97 (available in three colors).

    11. A splurge-worthy Chef iQ smart pressure cooker featuring a lot of really fancy features so you can go from PB&J cook into a top chef that can pressure cook, slow cook, sear/sauté, steam, and more. It has a built in scale to help you measure ingredients as well as an auto release that'll let the steam out when it's done cooking.

    @mychefiq / Via, @mychefiq / Via

    BuzzFeed editor Melanie Aman loves this! Here's what she has to say:

    "I love my CHEF iQ Smart Cooker for a lot of reasons but mainly the smart auto pressure release, so I no longer have to cross my fingers and hope my dinner doesn't explode in my face when I release the pressure valve by hand. It also has a handy built-in scale, which is super useful when a recipe calls for grams and the American education system once again fails me. On top of doing everything your old pressure cooker could do plus a whole heck of a lot more, my CHEF iQ Smart Cooker just looks a lot sleeker, meaning I can leave it out on the counter without it being an eyesore."

    Get it from Amazon for $179.99.

    12. A silicone freezing tray to make meal prep that much easier by helping you separate your soups or pasta sauces in perfect 1-cup compartments.

    Each tray has four fill lines — 1/2 cup, 1 cup, 125 mL, and 250 mL — which is ideal for people who like to portion their food.

    Promising review: "My wife saw this item somewhere and told me she would love to have this as she prepares homemade soups at least twice a week. I bought two of the extra large Soupers and she absolutely loves them. She has had them about a month now and has used them about 10 times. We have a freezer full of soup! This item works as advertised, is well-priced, and has held up great so far. The extra large makes a good size bowl of soup" —Amazon Customer

    Get it from Amazon for $19.95.

    13. A pancake batter mixer and dispenser complete with a wire whisk blender ball for easy smooth, less clumpy batter. You'll ~wow~ with your next set of pancakes, waffles, crepes, and more, as long as you get the measurements right.

    the pancake batter mixer and dispenser with batter inside next to a skillet with freshly poured batter cooking into pancakes on the stove

    Promising review: "If you’re thinking of buying this item, DO IT!
    I originally purchased it because I was tired of scooping my batter with a measuring cup, dripping along the way, just to have oblong-shaped pancakes. This thing makes the perfect round cakes with no mess! I was skeptical about it holding as much batter as we usually use; enough for four people. But it was perfect when we doubled the original recipe! It has a built-in stand when you add your ingredients through the bottom and clean up is a breeze. Don’t think twice; just buy it. You won’t regret it! —Michelle W.

    Get it from Amazon for $11.85+ (available in two styles).

    14. And speaking of measurements, a set of nesting measuring cups so you can add the exact amount of ingredients, getting you that much closer to becoming the next Top Chef.

    the nesting measuring cups

    Promising review: "I own a lot of OXO brand items from kitchen to bathroom, and the brand never disappoints. Their measuring cups surely didn’t! I needed an upgrade from my longtime set and am so glad I settled on these! They are really nice, made with a hard smooth plastic of some sort. They all snap together so I never have a missing cup. Each cup is clearly labeled with what size it is in two different areas. This makes it very easy to grab the one I need. I love the color theme. The round strip snaps them all together and can actually be used to even off your baking ingredient in the cup. True OXO quality. They wash well. I’ve hand-washed then but they are also dishwasher safe. A great find and a great price. Very happy with these cups. Definite longevity here. I hope my pictures reflect the quality. Highly recommend!" —meshelle

    Get it from Amazon for $7.99

    15. A trio pan that'll let you try out three different lasagna recipes at one time.

    a reviewer photo with three different types of lasagna in the pan after baking

    Promising review: "There's nothing but good coming from this pan! Yummy crunchy edges on every piece! I made three different kinds of lasagna in this pan and all I can say is that there were already plans for the next batch before this one was gone! This pan is heavy duty, has an awesome non-stick coating, and will definitely stand up to much use. The recipe called for spraying the pan with non-stick spray but it was completely unnecessary. I've already suggested this pan to others." —srenee

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

    16. A spill stopper to catch all the water that boils over your pot. No more rushing around to find something to wipe the counters with, or trying to scoop out the water with your company coffee mug.

    The spill stopper in red on top of a pot on a stove with water boiling inside, illustrating that it will not boil over

    Promising review: "Wow wow wow, I have no words to describe how great this product is. I'm a mom with a large family who cooks and bakes all the time, and there is never a time that something doesn't spill over even when standing and watching the pot. With this, life has just gotten easy. I think I'm throwing out all my pot covers after using this." —Rackel

    Get it from Amazon for $20.

    17. A vegetable slicer because despite the number of tutorials you've watched, cutting veggies just isn't your strong suit and that's completely okay.

    A sliced food

    BuzzFeed writer Rachel Dunkel tells us why she loves this slicer: 

    "This mandolin is the OG — I always spot it on cooking shows and competitions, and for good reason. Once I got one, I couldn't believe how precisely it cuts. It really just makes you want to cook nothing but potato chips and zucchini rounds. And don't even get me STARTED on how thin you can slice garlic." —Rachel Dunkel

    Get it from Amazon for $25.99.

    18. A microwave pasta maker to pretty much make your dreams come true because it lets you make the perfect al dente pasta in the microwave. Your dinner guests will never know. Now top it with some sauce and serve it up!


    Promising review: "I love pasta, but I hate *making* pasta. Too many pots, pans, strainer, cleanup, etc. Forget it. And after a long day at work when I am craving pasta, all I want to do is eat right away. This pasta cooker cooked pasta better than I have ever cooked pasta in my life. I am Italian, so as you can imagine I have eaten (and made myself) a LOT of pasta. This product is a game changer. It was extremely easy to use, cooked quickly, and it came out PERFECTLY. Not over cooked, a little al dente, but not firm. Perfection. Now I have no excuse not to cook pasta for myself (and my husband) practically every day. BUY THIS. It will change your life." —Hope Lanza

    Get it from Amazon for $16.99.

    19. A pair of bear claws so you don't have to struggle to shred your meat with your dinner forks. Instead, you can pretend you're an alpha on Teen Wolf and use these claws to rip your meat to shreds, literally.

    Model shredding meat with the claws

    Promising review: "These claws are just what you need for shredding pork, chicken, beef, or any other items. The points are sharp, narrow, and long, and work well as a pair. It's much more efficient and quicker than using two forks. Even when I buy pulled pork from Trader Joe's and it's already 'pulled,' this is an excellent tool for really shredding it properly. I thought I might have been a little extravagant in ordering this, but now I realize it is very useful beyond shredding, e.g. holding a watermelon with one hand/claw as you cut with the other hand." —J. Renfrow

    Get them from Amazon for $12.95+ (available in four colors).

    20. A multi-function chopping board with a meat grip on one side that helps you carve your meat, and easy pour corners for draining the juices.

    Model cuts meat on the cutting board, using the spikes to keep it in place

    Promising review: "I bought this cutting board with the hopes of being able to cut veggies (specifically watery tomatoes) and meats (drippy pork loin comes to mind) without spilling juices all over the countertop. This board is everything I've been looking for — and does it better than I expected. The dense plastic won't dull my knives, and it is sure to last for years. Each side's edges are covered with a thick silicone rubber to prevent slipping. Overall, this is a fantastic cutting board that we use regularly and has even replaced my favorite wood board simply because of its functionality." —Sidney Shore

    Get it from Amazon for $19.95+ (available in four colors).

    21. A cordless electric wine opener because it's an easy-to-use device that'll help you open up a bottle of wine with little to no effort at all. Grabbing a bottle to pair with your new meal? This opener will pop the bottle in a matter of seconds.

    Closeup of the wine opener

    Promising review: "One of the best items I bought for $20 or less from Amazon. I used it out the box without charging it to open a bottled wine whose cork was mutilated by a hand opener. Opened the bottle like a champ. When it is charging, it has a blue light that the kids love! For you sci-fi fans out there, when it is charging, it looks like a light saber! Hands down an awesome product. Would highly recommend!" —Eric M Johnson

    Get it from Amazon for $19.49.

    22. A digital food thermometer if you've sliced your poor steak to death trying to make sure every part of it is cooked thoroughly. Just stick this thermometer in to check the temp and save your steak from further dismemberment.,

    Promising review: "I used this for the first time last night for dinner. We fried some chicken, and I’m so glad I had this!! Cooking with some bigger bone in thighs, this definitely came in handy. Extremely quick and accurate. When you unfold the thermometer it automatically turns on and turns off when you fold it back, and it provides the current temperature reading as soon as you insert. Best investment! I almost forgot to mention it comes with a three-year warranty after you register within 30 days of your purchase!" —Corinna

    Get it from Amazon for $15.95 (available in seven colors).

    23. A two-stage electric knife-sharpener to keep your blades sharp for all of the chopping and dicing you'll be doing in the future.

    Hands running a knife through the small sharpener

    Read our full KitchenIQ knife sharpener review!

    Promising review: "Wow, this little gadget is pretty amazing! I have some old (expensive) nonserrated knives that are supposed to never need sharpening but unfortunately, lost their sharp edge long ago. I saw this gadget and decided to try it. I set the bottom of this gadget on the edge of the counter and ran one of the knives through the side labeled 'Coarse' about 10 times, then ran it through the side labeled 'Fine' another 8 to 10 times. Bingo! The knife was transformed back to its former high-dollar cutlery glory. I could hardly believe how effectively it had sharpened the knife, which I had been ready to throw away a week before. I've been happily sharpening all our knives and trying to add up in my head how much money I've saved by NOT having to buy another set of expensive knives. I don't know where else you can spend $6 and get this return for the money. Great score!" —Schelly L. Wagoner

    Get it from Amazon for $7.07.

    24. A Magic Bullet for the blend-obsessed and coffee aficionados that need a kitchen gadget that'll make their morning routine that much smoother. Oh, and parents, it makes baby food, too. *mic drop*

    Harper Hendrickson / BuzzFeed

    BuzzFeed writer Harper Hendrickson loves this! Here's what they said:

    "This blender is the small but mighty LOML. It gleams with power, is compact but WILL put larger blenders to shame (those stainless steel blades are no joke), travel-friendly, and it comes apart nice and easy for quick cleaning and storage!

    The Magic Bullet is also simple to use. It has a lock-in and twist-to-blend cup, with the blade at the top of the lid. This makes it easy to prep ready-to-blend smoothies for later when you are really on the go.

    I lived in the California desert for a month while recovering from toxic mold exposure, and daily smoothies were (and still are) a big part of the recovery process for me. The Magic Bullet is versatile — it can chop, whip, mix, grind, and more! I also use my MB to make fresh hummus, sauces, and soups for dinner. Recovering from mold through diet is all about preparing and eating your own fresh food(s) from scratch, so this machine has been a huge time-saver for me and my partner. The Magic Bullet is speedy, convenient, powerful as heck, and you don't have to take my word for it. Reviewers swear by it for grinding coffee, saving money on baby food, making sauces, smoothies, and all sorts of other treats."

    Get it from Amazon for $29.04.

    25. A versatile waffle maker to turn those picture perfect pancakes into insta-worthy waffles. These waffles will also have deep pockets, ideal for filling with all kinds of delicious toppings.

    Model making a waffle using the maker

    Promising review: "Great waffle maker and a good value. We make everything in this: hashbrowns, mochi, waffles, green onion pancakes — you name it. We love it!" —J. Law

    Get it from Amazon for $18.49.

    26. A classic Le Creuset pie bird that'll act as ventilation so you don't need to poke holes in the pie. It can 1) keep your pie filling from boiling over, 2) distribute moisture to avoid a soggy bottom, and 3) make sure the top crust cooks even without splitting. It's also super cute decoration, too.

    a pre cooked and cooked pie with the pie bird in the center

    This pie bird is safe for the freezer, microwave, oven, broiler, and dishwasher!

    Promising review: "Amazing what difference this bird can make to your pie! I definitely made the best apple pie I've ever made with this little device. For the first time ever, my pie did not spill out juices onto the pan below or into the stove, and the crust was flaky and crisper than it has ever been. I really cannot speak highly enough of how well this pie bird worked. If you make pies, you need one of these!" —Happylakedreamer

    Get it from Amazon for $12.99+ (available in four colors).

    27. A simply perfect tortilla press kit because you're on a roll now so it's only fitting that you also try making homemade tortillas. This press is made in Mexico out of Singer sewing machines and will not only be easy to use, but will also look amazing in your kitchen.

    Bright red tortilla maker with balls of dough beside flat, finished pieces
    Verve Culture

    Verve Culture is a woman-owned small business based in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. It was founded by a mother and daughter, and they curate products that are "made in the country of origin using traditional practices."

    Promising review: "This tortilla press is SO cute and lets you make delicious tortillas super easily. I love the pop of red on my counter and guests always give me compliments when I take it out for Taco Tuesday!" —Carly

    Get it from Verve Culture for $48 (PayPal available).

    28. A veggie spiralizer to help you make homemade zoodles for days when you want 'em fresh instead of store bought.,

    It has a finger protector, and a container with a bottom lid — so you can automatically and easily catch all your zoodles as you spiralize! Plus, there are three blade settings for thin, medium, or ribbon zoodles.

    Promising review: "I have been wanting a spiralizer for a while and now I'm sorry I waited as long as I did. I received this promptly and just used it for the first time to spiralize some zucchini from the garden for a side dish with tonight's meal. Very easy to assemble, even easier to use, and cleanup was as simple as placing parts in the top rack of the dishwasher. There is a finger-protector to keep your fingers away from the blade while working. There are also buttons that allow you to set the desired width of the spirals you create, so it's very simple to alternate between thin, medium and more ribbon-shaped curls. Very satisfied with this item, especially for the price!" —Rebecca M

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99.

    29. A pack of toaster bags if you've ever wanted to stick an entire sandwich in the toaster. Well, now you can. With these toaster bags, you can actually make grilled cheese in the toaster without the potentially dangerous mess you would get if you stuck the bare sandwich in there. How cool is that?!

    grilled cheeses in bags in a toaster

    No more lifting the bread with a spatula to see if your sandwich is burnt beyond belief or completely untoasted. Knowing you, it's likely one of each on either side.

    Promising review: "I purchased these for the office to end the endless fights about the dirty toaster and toaster oven and THEY DO MAGIC. Everyone is happy, toaster is clean, peace is restored! Food is heated evenly." —Marina

    Get three bags from Amazon for $6.99.

    You getting ready for your next dinner party super amped to try cooking again:


    Reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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