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    39 Things To Help Anyone Who's Bad At Cooking Dinner

    Time to break up with your friends at the drive-thru.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. A 3-in1 avocado tool that'll split, pit, and slice the good green stuff because sometimes dinner is a piece of toast topped with avocado and some red pepper flakes and that's totally fine! It's filling, easy, and delicious.


    Promising review: "I used to laugh at this kind of product until my friend was using hers. It made it all so easy! Honestly, I can't believe someone as clumsy as me was functioning without it. Where I used to use a knife and spoon or fork to deal with avocados, it's now just this one thing. Each part of the tool does its job really well, and it's easy to clean. Love it so much. Even if you're not a clever tool kinda person, just get it. It's worth it." —kikikitten

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99.

    2. A rapid egg cooker to help you nail down a protein source in lots of different ways! Or just fix yourself a big batch of deviled eggs, which IMO could make for a great dinner.


    Promising review: "I love hard boiled eggs for protein especially when I’m on the go as a student/worker but it’s hard to wait for the water to boil then put In the eggs and get ready all at the same time. This cooker is amazing!! Saves me time, it’s quick and I don’t have to watch it while it cooks I can go get ready and then I hear a loud buzzer notifying me when the eggs are done! (The buzzer is really loud sounds like a basketball game buzzer) I was surprised how fast the eggs cooked and was afraid they were still raw." —OnAJourney

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99 (available in five colors).

    3. An Instant Pot – it can handle 7(!!!!) kitchen tasks in one precious lil' appliance body so dinner's ready as soon as you walk in the door.


    This baby serves as a rice cooker, pressure cooker, slow cooker, steamer, sauté, yogurt maker, and warmer. Pinterest has been all about the Instant Pot for a few years and you should really hop on this bandwagon. Just check out our full review of the Instant Pot and Instant Pot recipes that'll basically cook themselves. Still unconvinced? Look at all the yummy Amazon reviewer photos.

    Promising review: "I'm a horrible cook. I don't like it and I'm not good at it. My friend told me about this so I decided to give it a try. You guys? I can't stop cooking. My daughter started feeling sick the other night, so I took her temperature...fever. Within 30 minutes, I served her homemade chicken noodle soup. I don't even know who I am anymore. BUY THIS." —Tricia O'Kelley

    Get it from Amazon for $79+ (available in 3-, 6-, or 8-quart sizes).

    4. And some slow cooker liners to make cleanup a total cinch. I use these and they're THE BEST.


    Get a box of six liners from Amazon for $2.94.

    5. A rotating countertop oven for ~evenly~ cooking all sorts of frozen goodies. Will that frozen pizza ever taste homemade? Unlikely. But it sure can taste delicious thanks to this gadget that'll evenly cook it.


    Like I needed another reason to ingest more Digiorno's. Don't @ me. It's good.

    Promising review: "When I saw the first Pizzazz come out on the market my first reaction was 'Great! Another novelty kitchen gadget. Yeah, I will pass on that one.' Years later, my faithful counter toaster oven dies. Too weak for toasts, I did cook lots of meals for 1 or 2 in there without warming up the house, which is desirable during the Arizona summer. As I was researching some models with the desired features, the great reviews on this came up, and I was wondering why so many seemed to love it. We rarely eat pizza or anything fried for that matter. I use my oven to bake and broil lean proteins and vegetables. It turns out, it does that just fine! So far I have cooked chicken and fish filets, stuffed salmon, stuffed mushrooms, refrigerated cinnamon rolls, pizza, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, melted cheese on top of broccoli and cauliflower, and of course, I make great sandwich melts from time to time. It works wonders for warming up buns for burgers or pulled pork sandwiches. I love that you can add the ingredients as food cooks and you can monitor progress easily. The disc is easy to clean but I often use parchment paper for speedy cleaning." —Anania

    Get it from Amazon for $46.49.

    6. A gorgeous 2-in-1 grill/griddle that'll make you wanna whip up something homemade *just* so you can do an Insta flat lay (and add to your stories). OK you'll wanna use it so you can actually eat food.


    This is made with a sleek bamboo base that's nice enough to leave out on the counter. The grill plate is dishwasher-safe and BPA-free. Includes bamboo & pig's hair brush and bamboo tongs.

    Get it from BuzzFeed's Goodful line, exclusively at Macy's, for $79.99.

    7. A cooktop cleaner kit to undo all those times that you weren't minding the pot.

    Promising review: "Saves the stove every time my husband tries to cook." —OT

    Get it from Amazon for $10.47.

    8. And while we're on the subject, a couple of pot minders to prevent some of the cleanup laterrrrrr.


    Promising review: "Are you a terrible cook? If you are, buy this! I can't cook. Every time I try to boil something, it's EVERYWHERE. These things are a lifesaver." —jenna

    Get a set of one small and one large from Amazon for $16.99.

    9. And a clip-on colander to help you drain your pasta water without loosing any noods in that kitchen sink (that, between you and me, has a layer of dirty dishes).


    Promising review: "This makes it so much easier to dump out water when making pasta of any type. It fits very well to most sized pans and dishwasher safe. My 9-year-old granddaughter can now dump the water out of the mac and cheese easily. This is a must-have for people who make pastas of any kind that require dumping out hot water. It is made out of a type of rubber so I’m not sure if I would use it for hot grease, but it may be ok for that too since a lot of spatulas are made from similar material" —Bill McNeil

    Get it from Amazon for $15.99+ (available in four colors).

    10. A multipurpose kitchen stand that'll cradle that cookbook you haven't even cracked yet while ya' crack a few eggs in the kitchen. Turns out it'll also serve as a spoon and pot lid holder!


    Get it from Amazon for $16.93+ (also available in white).

    11. *Reusable* toaster bags for helping you achieve peak sandwich at home without firing up the stovetop *or* catching your toaster on fire!


    These are also a fan favorite for families with members who have Celiac disease or other food sensitivities.

    Promising review: "Unless you are a 'foodie' and need to grill your sandwiches, this bag is a great way to get a warm sandwich—and if you have cheese on it, the cheese will melt. Just make your sandwich and put it in the bag. Put the bag in your toaster and you have a great sandwich! Its so easy, and when I am done, I just rinse the bag under the faucet. Great for kids who love grilled cheese - without the fuss of 'grilling'!" —joycetv

    Get a pack of four from Amazon for $6.99.

    12. A produce dicer that'll make onion tears and food prep mess a thing of the past! It comes with four blades and steady construction so that piece of produce stays where you want it! Plus, it'll do a bunch of spiralizing for ya'.


    Promising review: "I love this veggie chopper. I often use it to make veggie soups and to make hashbrowns with onions and peppers. (Before this I would view that as far too much work due to the need to chop everything so finely.) I also use it to make zucchini spiral noodles for veggie 'spaghetti.' I appreciate the fact that it is easy to store the spare parts inside the spiralizer. Also, the brush is handy for cleaning." —SLC

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99 (available in three colors).

    13. A spaghetti measure can help you fix the actual normal amount you'd prefer, instead of enough for an army like you accidentally did last time that left you eating leftovers for a week. (JK, you ate leftovers the next day and then tossed the rest.)


    Promising review: "Perfect gift for my mom. She always makes too much food because she can never figure out how much to put in the pot. This will help and it's funny too. :D" —Breanna

    Get it from Amazon for $10.95.

    14. An excellent chef's knife to help you cut up those whole ingredients with finesse so that's one less thing you've gotta worry about. ICYMI, cutting with dull knives is extremely dangerous!


    Promising review: "I was a butcher for years and always used good knives for my work. Now, I love to cook but can't afford pricey knives. I saw the other reviews here and was very skeptical. After using this knife for two months as my main kitchen knife, I couldn't be any more impressed with it. I use and abuse it, throw it in the dishwasher and use it and abuse it again, and it keeps coming back for more. I use it on bone-in meats, veggies, tomatoes... whatever, and it retains its edge and still looks brand new. I haven't had to sharpen it at all yet, and it is still razor sharp. I highly recommend it." —HSHS Dad

    Get it from Amazon for $14.49+ (available in eight colors and several sizes/types).

    15. A compact food processor that won't be a huge investment money-wise but will feel like a great investment for all sorts of recipes you've been wanting to try.


    The blade is sharp on one edge and blunt on the other, and reverses by itself to chop or grind! So really, it's going to do all the work for you.

    Get it from the BuzzFeed Tasty Cuisinart collection on HSN for $39.99 (available in three colors).

    16. And some cut-resistant gloves because nothing can throw a wrench in dinner plans like spurting blood.


    Promising review: "I just used these gloves with a SHARP mandolin to make razor-thin shallots for a made-from-scratch green bean casserole for the holidays. I'm SO happy I bought these because they WORK exceptionally well! I set my mandolin to the thinnest setting and used these gloves to get the finest thinly cut shallots. Love, love, love this product." —Anne

    Get them from Amazon for $11.49 (available in sizes S-XL).

    17. An airfryer to dupe those fast-food favorites that have kept you from learning how to perfect some homemade recipes.


    Promising review: "BEST BEST BEST item ever!! I can't believe how much I love this kitchen countertop appliance. I use this on average once a day, maybe more. It cooks beautiful and you can pretty much put anything in there. Chicken, french fries, steak, roast, you name it; and all without the grease. You can even cook hot dogs; not the most healthy but they come out like you cooked them on the grill. Reheating food comes out much better in this air fryer than in a microwave. The microwave either overcooks or makes things soggy and the food just never tastes the same but not in the air fryer!! The food comes out great! Gotta try it!" —Kathleen

    Get it from Amazon for $68.48+ (also available in white).

    18. An iron fish made to infuse more iron into your food and the water it's cooking in — which would be especially helpful if you're vegetarian or vegan and find yourself pretty unsatisfied with your previously home-cooked meals. Stop giving all your monies to that fancy vegan place in your neighborhood!


    Promising review: "I'm very pleased with the Lucky Iron Fish so far. It is easy to use, the water does not have any odd taste to it, and I feel like it has raised the iron level in my blood." —Lynelle G.

    Get it from Amazon for $30.

    19. A 3-in-1 breakfast station because breakfast for dinner is a gift to this world and you should make it way more often. Plus, breakfast food is super easy!


    It has a coffee maker, which brews up to four cups of coffee at a time, a toaster oven, which toast up to four slices of bread at a time, and a family size non-stick griddle. Plus, it has a 30-minute timer with automatic shut off.

    Promising review: "This is a great multifunctional kitchen gadget. I've now purchased three of these for nieces and nephews. These are great for young folks in college, small apartments, etc. and anyone who lives alone. It's compact and economical. Plus, it's from a Nostalgia, which is brand I trust." —ddledgenet

    Get it from Amazon for $79.99+ (available in three colors).

    20. Or a microwave bacon cooker in case you can't get enough of these tasty strips and have been known to plan a dinner around it. No more having to make a trip out to the diner.,

    Promising review: "This cooker is the easiest way to cook bacon. Drape a few slices over the rods, microwave 60 or so seconds, pull 'em off and enjoy! Now you don't have to do without bacon in the morning 'cause it takes too long to fix. Then, dunk it in soapy water, rinse, and let it air dry. Also quick. It even folds up small enough to store in a drawer. Ya can't beat this little jewel. Try it. Return it if it isn't everything I've said. I love it." —Kenne Messer

    Get it from Amazon for $11.95.

    21. Kitchen tools made of resilient (but pretty!) beechwood and heat-resistant silicone (up to 425°F, to be exact) because remember that time you melted a plastic spoon while scrambling eggs? Well the spoon doesn't bc it's DEAD.


    Get them from BuzzFeed's Goodful line, exclusively at Macy's, for $11.99.

    22. A handy batter dispenser to make pancakes (and then cupcakes for dessert) easy work. No more lopsided stacks thanks to eyeballing your allotments of batter.


    Promising review: "Why, oh why didn't I buy this a whole lot sooner? I have always made pancakes or waffles reluctantly because of the mess it always makes with drips and runs all over the waffle maker, the counter, and the stove. Well, no more! This wonderful tool puts the batter exactly where you want it, when you want it — and then closes quickly and completely so you don't drip batter when putting it down. I highly recommend this dispenser. It does just what it is supposed to do, without any fuss or mistakes." —Barbara D. G.

    Get it from Amazon for $18.99.

    23. A flexible pancake turner for achieving Leslie Knope–level breakfast goals. Ugly pancakes are still delicious, but you've got the means to turn out some beauts.


    Promising review: "This guy has a *really* wide blade. It is so wide that you can made a *big* pancake and still slip under it with ease from any angle. Next, this guy is heat-resistant to 600 degrees F. Who cares? Well, yesterday my wife and I were making pancakes and she thought I had oiled the griddle and I thought she had oiled the griddle and...well, needless to say, the first pancake stuck and we had a quick recovery to perform. Got that sticky little devil up and off the griddle quickly and then turned my attention to getting the oil out and...Wait! Where did I put the new clown paddle flipper? Oh, down on the stove touching the burner! Ugh. But, unlike previous utensils unintentionally sacrificed to the fire gods, this flipper was completely unharmed." —MetaphoricalOldGuy

    Get it from Amazon for $11.99.

    24. A mounted jar opener because, let's be real, how many times have you started to open up a jar of marinara sauce to make a quick meal and have given up on making that lid budge only to order some pizza? Who? Me?!


    Promising review: "This thing has been a life saver!!! With carpal-tunnel and arthritis, I had got to where opening anything was nearly impossible. And I live alone, so I don't have anyone to go whining to when I needed something opened. I would either work on it until I got it opened (and was in a lot of pain), or gave up on whatever it was I was opening. But with this, I can open ANYTHING!!! Great product!!" —Crystal A.

    Get it from Amazon for $13.95.

    25. An immersion blender to give a whirl to sauces, smoothies, and soups. Homemade soup is easier than you think! Truly!


    The set comes with a three-cup blending and storage jar with a lid, you can use as a travel mug, a two-cup chopping bowl, and a whisk you can attach.

    Promising review:
    "I love this blender! I've always avoided making things that needed blending because my old blender was so hard to use. This thing is magic. I used it to puree some pumpkin for soup — it was down in literally a second. I tried to make tomatillo salsa in my old blender — the veggies just want round and round. I put the veggies in the Epica food bowl, pressed the button, and whoosh! I had salsa in like two seconds. I am thoroughly impressed!" —SingingChemist

    Get it from Amazon for $36.50.

    26. A super pot that can be used to grill, simmer, and steam. Nothing like a new kitchen appliance to get your pumped for dinner time!


    Promising review: "Bought this to replace my stove. I can grill in it, fry fish, make soups, stews, and omelets, steam vegetables, and bake in it. I love it. It's easy on the electric bill and doesn't heat up the house." —William Thomas

    Get it from Amazon for $29.90.

    27. A foldable cutting board so you don't have to sacrifice another single mushroom slice to the fiery pits of your gas stove. Wait, do you have your own cooking show?


    Promising review: "My wife really likes this item. She was using our two large glass boards to cut everything on. Cleaning those larger boards took some effort. She chops a lot of small items on it and likes the way it folds in half, which makes it easy to pour the chopped items into other dishes. She then puts it in the dishwasher for washing. Would be very easy to hand wash as well." —P. Stein

    Get it from Amazon for $8.12+ (available in six colors).

    28. An adorable pot clip to hold up your spoon because an extra pair of hands (or claws) can make the biggest difference when you're whipping up a batch of easy chili you found on Pinterest.


    It's made of silicone and stainless steel, and heat-resistant to 482°F-250°C.

    Promising review: "Simple yet brilliant is how to describe this little tool. Clips to any pot easily and securely and allows you to rest just about any kitchen utensil securely over the pot/dish. Drips simply end up back in the food and not on your counters. Silicone buttons protect against any scratching so this can be used safely be used on even the most expensive pots worry free." —KB

    Get it from Amazon for $8.38.

    29. A ramen microwave cooker built to make your noodles taste like you waited in line for hours at the hot new ramen joint.


    This BPA-free and dishwasher-safe tool will cook up your ramen in three minutes. Try it out with one of these 17 Ramen Hacks That Will Make You Feel Fancy AF.

    Promising review: "I saw this on Shark Tank. My parents laughed at me for ordering it but after they tried the ramen they wanted one for themselves. First of all, the cooking time is significantly reduced. It's not mushy. It tastes like i made it on the stove. Theres a water fill line so the ramen comes out the same every time. And the handles on the side never burns your fingers. Amazing product"—Marcus McClellan

    Get it from Amazon for $5.99+ (available in three colors).

    30. A rice cooker so you can set it and forget it — no more scraping burnt rice off the bottom of your pot!


    Promising review: "I used to avoid making rice because it was a hassle, requiring vigilance, timing/temperature control, not to mention the cleanup of the sticky mess left behind. This cute little non-stick gizmo makes PERFECT rice while you IGNORE it, sometimes for hours... It comes with a charming recipe booklet that shows things that can be made with it BESIDES rice, like soup, mac and cheese, chili, pudding, etc. This attractive cooker takes center stage in my kitchen. I recommend it highly!" —Cape Cod Kadi

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99+ (available in five colors).

    31. An approachable cookbook that breaks down cooking into four major categories so you'll feel more confident in the kitchen. You've got this!


    Promising review: "This book is worth its weight in gold. The author shares an extraordinary skill set organized in easily understood teaching modules. Mediocre fresh green beans turned into flavorful wonders, buttermilk plus chicken roasted to flavor and tenderness heaven, Italian bread salad flavor testing and adjustment by author's encouragement. My guests were in awe and freely praised my cooking. Easily improve your cooking through easy lessons. Destined to be a classic. The author empowers the home cook — this is the real deal." —Reudi

    Get it from Amazon for $13.73.

    32. Oven rack guards so you won't get burned the next time you attempt that casserole. Literally. Casseroles are easy and tasty!


    Promising review: "After too many scars to count, I found these! They are a must. Why didn't someone think of this earlier! They are great. Get hot but won't burn your skin. My wife bakes a lot every week and she was always getting burned pulling racks out of the oven. A must buy." —Eti

    Get a pack of three from Amazon for $9.45.

    33. A straining spoon to help make pasta dinners a total cinch. And it'll let you get around lifting a heavy pot to drain it in the sink.


    Promising review: "I love this thing! It is quite sturdy and has no issues holding lots of ravioli, tortellini, or any other shaped pasta. One note, it does not do well with long spaghetti. It is also great for grabbing veggies out when I blanch them in water or chicken breasts I have poached. I was injured in an automobile accident and my hands are not in great condition. This has made having to use tongs for some things no longer necessary. It has also — almost totally — made lifting heavy pots full of liquid, unnecessary. Cooking is therapy for me; and, to find any tools which make it easier for me, is fantastic! I highly recommend this scoop to anyone needing a little help in the kitchen, or who just wants to not have to pull out strainers all of the time. No reservations of any kind." —Kayce Cawthon McCarty

    Get it from Amazon for $6.79+ (available in four colors).

    34. A microwave pasta cooker that'll help you achieve al dente noods ready to top off with some jarred sauce.


    Promising review: "I don't want to get all gushy over a pasta maker, but man...I really love this gizmo! I like spaghetti — either with normal Prego-type sauce or sometimes just with butter and Romano cheese sprinkled on. But I'm lazy and impatient, and don't like things that take a long time to make, with a bunch of steps, and a big clean up afterwards. The Fasta Pasta is perfect for me. I get the exact amount of correctly-measured spaghetti; it's faster than boiling water in a big pot then having to watch and stir the pasta; the pasta comes out perfectly cooked every time; and the cleanup is a snap." —Smilin Sam

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99.

    35. A splatter guard so when you turn up the heat just a bit too high all is not lost and you're not caught with piping-hot sauce all over your hands and clothes.


    Promising review: "This is a game-changer for my attitude toward pan-frying foods — especially fish. I no longer worry about oil and juices splattering all over the stove and surrounding floor. It's also very handy to use when sautéing leafy greens, since the 'wall' adds height and keeps the greens from escaping as you stir. We've put it through the dishwasher several times already, and the fact that it folds up makes storage so much easier." —Kathryn A. Riggs

    Get it from Amazon for $21.95 (available in four colors).

    36. An aluminum sheet pan for roasting a pan full of veggies or finally putting all those sheet pan dinners to use.


    Promising review: "Heavy for its side, it did not warp in a hot oven. I love sheet pan dinners. One pan, held four chicken breasts, potatoes, onions, assorted bell peppers — all roasted to perfection in one pan. Use a good quality oil and just brush it on the inside surface of the pan. The stainless steel pan cleans easily! Also, makes great cookie bars." —Mamalus

    Get a set of two half-sheets from Amazon for $21.99.

    37. And silicone baking mats so you don't have to scrape those sheet pans clean or worry about your meal getting burnt. Folks use this for everything from cookies to pies to pizza to roasted veggies.,

    Promising review: "Used for the first time last night to bake some salmon stuffed with crabmeat. The mat worked, kept everything clean, and the meal came out perfect. These are much easier to clean than my other baking mats that are textured too." —Molli

    Get two from Amazon for $13.99.

    38. Daily Harvest, a subscription of frozen cups ready for you to (quickly whip up) – it'll become an organic freezer staple for anyone who lives off of smoothies, harvest bowls, soups, and other scrumptious things. I've tried it and LOVE it.

    @dailyharvest / Via

    I decided to give it a go because I'm sure as hell not going to go out and buy pine pollen and black sesame to add to my smoothies. I barely buy lemons as it is! The cups ship frozen and last for months in your freezer in case ya' need a smoothie break (but why?). You simply blend it (if it's a smoothie) or cook it up (in case it's something like a bowl), then can dump it back in the cup and go. You can also add extras, with some inspo from their Insta. I've walked to the train many a time sipping on a smoothie out of one of these cups. Plus all the ingredients are listed right there on the cup in case a stranger has questions on what you're consuming. All the flavors I've tried are delicious but my personal smoothie faves include Dragon Fruit + Lychee, Cold Brew + Cacao, Mint + Cacao (which tastes like ice cream!), and Chocolate + Blueberry.

    Sign up for a weekly or monthly plan on Daily Harvest (pricing ranges from $6.99–$7.75 per cup depending on your plan).

    39. And some Solyent you can keep on hand in the fridge just in case you burn everything beyond recognition. Dinner isn't completely ruined! Tonight it's coming from a bottle! (This bottle.)


    Several of my coworkers swear by this stuff, and my brother recently hopped on the Soylent train (hey Walt!) and is really digging it.

    Promising review: "This drink has made my life so much easier. I have class at 8 a.m. Monday–Thursday and I’m the kind of person who gets up, gets dressed, and just goes to class without eating a proper breakfast. After getting this drink, I started drinking a bottle some mornings when I needed more energy (such as the day before a test or the day of a test) and I didn’t have to worry about what to eat and was able to put all my time into the lecture and studying. I wouldn’t say this counts as a meal but it makes you not worry about eating for a while. It’s also nutritious and tastes like chocolate milk. Definitely a great addition to my life. I highly recommend this if you don’t have a lot of time to eat breakfast or you’re just lazy like me." —Pedram Miyabi

    Get a 12-pack from Amazon for $39+ (available in four flavors and a variety pack).

    Time to chow down!


    Reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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    Allison Krausman / BuzzFeed