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    19 Kitchen Products For Anyone Who’s Always Exhausted After Work

    You're not a colander, so stop straining yourself to get dinner on the table.

    by ,

    We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, BuzzFeed and Microsoft may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. The miracle-working Instant Pot, which combines seven tools (including a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and rice cooker) in one appliance and prepares gourmet meals in a fraction of the time you're probably used to.

    Promising review: "I absolutely despise spending a lot of time in the kitchen after work. I am tired, just want to pour a glass of wine, and binge-watch Supernatural. My boyfriend can't cook to save his life, so that isn't much help either. I'd feel better eating something created out of real, edible foods rather than microwaved in a pouch with fake cheese, so I cook even when I stay over at his house. Just when I was pondering the option of breaking up and finding a man who can cook (not really), INSTANT POT HAPPENED! Dinner is done and ready to eat every time in less than an hour. Sometimes WAY less than an hour. I can't believe I survived 30 years without one! It would have been AMAZING back when I was in college! I am constantly learning new things I can whip up (sometimes trial and error, sometimes recipe books). I can throw frozen chicken breasts in it, seasoning, just hit poultry setting, adjust the time up a bit, and boom. Super tender amazing chicken. Something about handling raw chicken makes me too disgusted to eat it once it's cooked, so being able to throw it in frozen is such a relief." —Sunahm

    Get it from Amazon for $69.95+ or Walmart for $59.92+ (available in 3-, 6-, and 8-quart sizes). Read more about this product here.

    2. Or, if it's just the rice cooker you're after, this Zojirushi — which cooks 10 perfect cups of rice in under an hour — is the cream of the crop.

    Promising review: "If you're pressed for time and you cook a lot of rice or other boiled/steamed grains, BUY THIS RICE COOKER. I would give it more than five stars if I could. It's a triumph of convenience engineering. I've owned a couple $20 rice cookers, which I used when I didn't have enough time to spare to pay attention to heat-on, heat-off cycles when I was making a meal. Now, I just select the type of grain from a super-intuitive menu, select the time I want it ready, and push a button. The rice is always perfect when the beeper goes off, and is still perfect the next day." —Kringle

    Get it from Amazon for $177.99 (find other great rice cookers on Amazon here).

    3. A nonstick cookware set, like Tasty's for Walmart, that offers great heat distribution, for even — and more importantly, fast — cooking.


    Promising review: "This cookware set has it all! Not just all the pieces (11) one needs in the kitchen, it also has flamin' red-hot STYLE! This set looks too good to simply push the old pots and pans back in the cupboard — gotta get rid of 'em altogether! Really though, the nonstick ceramic surface makes the pieces easy to clean, but thankfully they're dishwasher-safe, too, for those of us who prefer to toss 'em in the wash and migrate to the couch. The silicone handles keep the handles cool — greatest thing since sliced bread! LOVE this set." —Ifei

    Get an 11-piece set from the Tasty collection at Walmart for $88 (available in three colors).

    4. A set of nesting storage bowls that you can stick directly into the microwave and eat meals out of, effectively cutting out the annoying food-transfer step.,

    Get a set of four from Food52 for $60+ (available in seven colors and two sizes).

    5. A sworn-by microwave pasta cooker for anyone who just doesn't have the time to wait around for water to boil. (Also ideal for college students and those with limited mobility.)

    Promising review: "I love to make pasta, but hate boiling a giant pot of water on the stove just to cook it. Now, I prepare it all the time; this makes it so fast and easy! It is great for making pasta salad in the summer, when I don't want to have to turn on the stove, and is great for camping as well. I love this so much, I actually purchased one for my stepdaughter and my best friend as well. Well-made and dishwasher-safe, I have used mine for well over a year and it is still in perfect condition. Never want to be without this again!" —SpikeysMommy

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99 (read more about this product here).

    6. A no-oven-required pan that cooks brick-oven-style pizza in under three minutes — a much more efficient use of time and money than waiting for pizza delivery.

    Get it from Aha Life for $148.

    7. For the overworked parent, a "squeeze station," which sorts baby food and liquids into ready-to-go pouches.

    Promising review: "I've had this for two years now and am writing a review now because I just busted it out to make some more stuff. It's not just for baby food. When I received it as a gift from my mom, I was ecstatic and immediately destroyed my kitchen making all kinds of baby food. It's very easy to use, easy to wash, easy to store. I LOVE IT!!! Now that my daughter is 2+, I use it to make yogurt pouches. I throw my yogurt in a food processor with a variety of fruits, blend well, fill using the squeeze station, and VOILA!! I have yogurt pouches that are good in the fridge/freezer without having to buy the ones from the store with god only knows what preservatives in it." —Jade Voyles

    Get it from Amazon or Walmart for $19.79.

    8. A banana slicer that might just save your marriage? (But don't quote us on that — quote the promising reviewer below.)

    Promising review: "What can I say about the 571B Banana Slicer that hasn't already been said about the wheel, penicillin, or the iPhone... This is one of the greatest inventions of all time. My husband and I would argue constantly over who had to cut the day's banana slices. It's one of those chores NO ONE wants to do! You know, the old "I spent the entire day rearing OUR children, maybe YOU can pitch in a little and cut these bananas?" and of course, "You think I have the energy to slave over your damn bananas? I worked a 12-hour shift just to come home to THIS?!" These are the things that can destroy an entire relationship. It got to the point where our children could sense the tension. The minute I heard our 6-year-old girl in her bedroom, re-enacting our daily banana fight with her Barbie dolls, I knew we had to make a change. That's when I found the 571B Banana Slicer. Our marriage has never been healthier." —Mrs Toldeo

    Get it from Amazon for $4.36.

    9. A meal planner, so you don't have to drain 50% of your energy on a Chopped-style scavenger hunt in your kitchen every time you get home from work.

    Promising review: "As a busy working mom, this is fantastic! I keep an ongoing list of groceries needed on the right side (I modify mine based on what store I am going to) and then what's for dinner on the left side. I have four teenagers and there is always someone who is asking, "What's for dinner?" so this does the trick as now they just need to look at the list! Perfect for the busy family, and LOVE the magnet on the back!" —Lauren T.

    Get it from Amazon for $6.04.

    10. A fruit soft-serve maker, if you're looking for a healthy and easy dessert that utilizes the produce you already have hanging around the house.

    Promising review: "This is a pretty amazing machine. I cannot explain how skeptical I was of the Yonana. I also can't explain just how wrong I was. The machine works better than I could have ever imagined. I actually find the end product to be more like ice cream than some of the low-fat ice creams you buy in the store. It is delicious. The fact that you can have desert without any added sugar and fat is just total bonus." —D. Smith

    Get it from Amazon for $35.99.

    11. A speedy defrosting tray, for anyone who loves a good meat dinner but hates the process of waiting around for it to thaw.

    Promising review: "It thaws food out nice and even, and you don't have to worry about partially cooking the item or finding that it's still half frozen in the middle, like you would using a microwave. As per the instructions, it does help to run hot water on it first. No moving parts, easy to clean, and takes hardly any storage space." —RICKICAR

    Get it from Bed Bath and Beyond for $14.99.

    12. A rapid egg cooker, which prepares six eggs in any manner your heart desires — hard-, medium-, and soft-boiled eggs, two poached eggs, scrambled eggs, you name it.

    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 $19 (available in five colors) or Walmart for $24.95. Read more about this product here.

    13. Or, if you'd rather treat yourself to a healthy omelet after work, this microwavable stoneware clay dish makes a killer one in under 45 (!) seconds.

    Promising review: "I have four men in my family — my husband, my father, and my two grown boys. I bought each one of them 45-Second Omelet Maker and each one them raves about it! My husband makes Denver omelets, my father uses egg whites, and my boys use it to make an omelet for a bagel sandwich. I have made several for myself and cannot believe what a wonderful-tasting, healthy, and eye-pleasing omelet is created in 45 seconds!" —Princess Geek

    Get it from Uncommon Goods for $25.

    14. A two-in-one grill and griddle pan, so you can cut corners and cook two parts of the meal at once while keeping them separate.

    Promising review: "It's a very useful item, to be able to fry meat and eggs at the same time. Plus, being nonstick, it cleans up easily. I highly recommend this item." —mary p

    Get it from Amazon for $39.99.

    15. Multi-tool mason jars that consolidate spiralizing, juicing, and grating into one easy (and easily storable) contraption.

    The set includes a canning jar, cliptop round jar, spiralizer top, juicer top, grater top, and dipping pot.

    Promising review: "Making dinner and juicing is so much easier, and these jars are adorable on my counter." —Joyful

    Get the set from Uncommon Goods for $9.99.

    16. A two-tier food steamer that you can use to quickly prepare meats, veggies, and grains all at once.

    Promising review: "Amazed at how fast I can cook a meal with this product. Absolutely love it." —Cathy Parker

    Get it from Amazon for $27.68.

    17. A countertop convection toaster oven, which will feel like a level-up even when you're throwing in leftovers that would have otherwise gone in the microwave.

    Promising review: "Let me start with this is my first convection oven or toaster oven and I was a bit skeptical on how well this would work. I was very surprised and impressed to say the least. I bought this for my wife as a gift and i am sure glad I did, because this thing saves a lot of time cooking vs. my oven, and it also preheats faster. I have stopped using my microwave for a lot of things because of this, as well as my oven, except for very large roasts. For the price I would say you will not find a more useful kitchen appliance or a better-looking one." —Tim

    Get it from Amazon or Walmart for $59.67.

    18. An air fryer to give your meals a nice crunch without adding oil or complicated steps — just plug in your digits on its easy-to-use touch panel.

    Promising review: "The digital settings make it easy to select for different foods. So far we have cooked raw thawed-out chicken wings, drumsticks, hamburger patties w/blue cheese crumbles, and a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin. All have turned out fantastic! The frozen Tater Tots come out crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. We have used it to heat up pizza and wings and it does it quickly and tastes just like you just cooked it. The absolute best part: cleanup. We just wipe it out in between uses and clean it when we are done. One small pot and basket. It used to take an entire batch of pots and pans to cook all day on a Sunday for the week, now it takes one. I would highly recommend this." —Keenbuddy

    Get it from Walmart for $99.

    19. An Aroma Housewares 3-in-1 Superpot, which has the capacity to turn any lazy dinner into an interactive, delicious shabu-shabu event. (That's a Japanese meal of thinly sliced meat and vegetables boiled in water, for the uninitiated.)

    Promising review: "I love this appliance!! It was very easy to start using and cooks everything perfectly. I have no complaints; this is definitely worth the money. I've used it to cook pasta, chicken, steak, grilled veggies, and more. It leaves nice grill marks on meat and veggies. I feel like a pro chef when I use it! I would recommend this to anyone looking to save cleaning time in the kitchen." —Diana L.

    Get it from Amazon or Walmart for $33.99.

    Or you can disregard all of this and just ask your dog to cover for the evening.


    Some reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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