13 Small Yet Mighty Kitchen Tools We Can't Live Without

13 Small Yet Mighty Kitchen Tools We Can't Live Without

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Dana Velden
Dec 28, 2016

We all aspire to the ideal that our kitchens should be workstations where everything is clean, unbroken, and useful. Not always possible, it's true, but we can be careful about cluttering it up with unnecessary tools and unitasking gadgets.

Here's a baker's dozen of the tools we learned to love even more this year, from the humble paddle that came with our rice cooker, to the garlic press one of our editors hid from Alton to the almighty lemon squeezer.

(Image credit: Kelli Foster)

1. The Best $5 You'll Ever Spend in the Kitchen

Ever heard that old saying about the right tool for the job? It is never more obviously true than with this $5 Y-peeler. Trust us and you will be a happy peeler today, tomorrow, and forever more.

(Image credit: gori910/Shutterstock)

2. Yes, the Paddle That Came with Your Rice Cooker Has a Purpose

There's a reason this tool was included with your rice cooker, and it's more useful than you may have realized. P.S.: It's plastic for a good reason, too.

(Image credit: Anjali Prasertong)

3. 10 Things You Didn't Know You Could Do in a Mason Jar

If you have a half-used case of Mason jars rattling around your storage cupboard, leftover from your last pickling project, then this post is for you. From individual cupcake carriers to cocktail shakers, we've got some ideas on how you can free up room in your cupboard and have some fun with Mason jars in the process.

(Image credit: Williams-Sonoma)

4. Why I Hid a Garlic Press from Alton Brown for 8 Years

For a while there, the garlic press had a bad reputation as a garlic destroyer and unitasker. Well, times have changed, thankfully, and now we can openly and unabashedly love the garlic press. What a relief!

(Image credit: Violeta Pasat/Shutterstock)

5. Should You Buy a Spiralizer? 3 Reasons to Say Yay (Also: We Tried 3 Spiralizers and Here's What We Thought)

Are you trying to find ways to eat more veg and less carbs, but aren't sure about investing in something that might be more trendy than useful? If you're on the fence about buying a spiralizer, here are three arguments in favor of this trendy tool du jour. Now the question is which one? There are so many kinds of spiralizers out there, but we narrowed it down to three and took them through the paces.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

6. The Must-Have Kitchen Tool for Baking Bread

Yes. Yes. Yes, yes, yes! It's with the utmost enthusiasm that we endorse this tool, which will be useful for more than bread-making. (And yes, we're going to make you click through to see what it is.)

(Image credit: Kristin Appenbrink)

7. Get More Out of Your Immersion Blender with These 5 Tips

Whether you know it as an immersion, stick, or hand blender, there's one thing that's certain — this is one useful kitchen tool. Its compact size makes it easy to store in even the tiniest kitchens, cleanup is a breeze, and best of all, it's super versatile.

(Image credit: Williams-Sonoma)

8. A Brief Guide to the Scariest (but Most Amazing) Tool in Your Kitchen

The mandoline is a super-sharp slicer that is admittedly quite intimidating with its razor-like blades and wobbly stance. But at the same time, it is so useful that we urge you to overcome fear of potential blood loss and to embrace this hard-working appliance.

(Image credit: Marge Perry)

9. The One and Only Wooden Spoon You Really Need

Wooden spoons seem so basic and alike, so how can one be better than the other? Well, in the case of this particular wooden spoon, there are three reasons why it is an outstanding version. Can you guess what they are?

(Image credit: hchjjl/Shutterstock)

10. Why 4 Whisks Are Better than 1

We're always preaching about doing away with clutter and having less unnecessary tools in our kitchens. So why, oh why, do we recommend you have four different kinds of whisks? We think this post will convince you that each has its own special and necessary use.

11. 5 More Times Kitchen Shears Are Superior to a Knife

Everyone says that a good kitchen knife can do almost anything. But here are five reasons why you might want to put that knife down and pick up your kitchen shears, which aren't, by the way, anything close to your regular ol' scissors.

12. Why Everyone Needs a Lemon Squeezer

If you don't think you need a lemon squeezer, perhaps it's because you have the wrong lemon squeezer. Let us set you on the right path.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

13. Why You Need a Pair of Cooking Chopsticks

Most of us are familiar with the typical takeout food chopsticks. Let us show you the virtues of a different kind, called saibashi in Japanese. These unique chopsticks are typically made of bamboo, are significantly longer (ranging anywhere between 14 to 16 inches in length), and have many culinary uses.

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