Our Best Kitchen Finds of 2016

published Dec 22, 2016
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A cook is only as good as her ingredients — and her tools. Here are 10 of our most popular kitchen finds from 2016. From the best peelers to a uni-tasker machine that has a 200,000-person waitlist, we found the best, most interesting, and most perfect tools — just for you.

(Image credit: Kelli Foster)

Anyone who has had to work with a dull, poorly designed, subpar peeler knows why this is our number-one post. Kitchen happiness is not about how much money you spend, but about finding the best tool for the job. The fact that this peeler is only $5 (or less) is important and certainly adds to its charm, but if it didn’t perform flawlessly and last forever, it could be handed out for free and you still wouldn’t find it here.

(Image credit: Heidi Murphy/White Loft Studio)

Technically this is a sheet pan (because it has sides) and not a cookie sheet, but this versatile whatever-you-want-to-call-it will bake your cookies, bars, sheet pan supper,s and … you get the picture. It’s the very definition of a workhorse tool, so be sure to pick up two (or even three) next time you stock up. Don’t worry! They won’t grow dusty in your cupboard — not even for one second.

(Image credit: Lily Kelting)

Corralling similar items in your refrigerator is an excellent way to keep a handle on sprawl and clutter. Lily moved to Germany and discovered that keeping all of her cheeses together in a designated cheese box was a game changer. Makes sense, doesn’t it? So why aren’t we all doing this already?

(Image credit: Geraldine Campbell)

Finding “the perfect” tool can be a revelation. We can struggle for years with a simple task or technique, blaming our lack of skill or coordination when it doesn’t work out. And then one day we casually pick up a new tool (the perfect tool!) and suddenly the clouds part and we’re winning our own home version of Top Chef. In this case, the perfect tool is a simple spatula. Hint: The perfect tool is often the simplest tool.

(Image credit: Marge Perry)

Every kitchen, no matter how humble, has at least one wooden spoon. Many have a whole jar full of them sitting on the counter, but most cooks reach for one in particular because it works the best. This is that wooden spoon. With its flat side for scraping, its deep bowl for scooping, and its long handle for keeping you splatter-free, this spoon is a true winner that you’ll reach for every time.

(Image credit: Coco Morante)

Slow cookers are great, but those of us who live in urban apartments find them impractical because they hog up the only scrap of counter space we have. Or if we put it away, the only cupboard we have. Enter: the teeny-tiny three-quart slow cooker. Sheela found five reasons to love this appliance. We bet you’ll find five more.

(Image credit: Zimplistic)

The charmingly named Rotimatic does one thing and it does it well: make chapatis. Part bread-maker, part 3D printer, the Rotimatic is the invention of Pranoti Nagarkar, a mechanical engineer and product designer who found it incredibly tedious to make fresh chapatis daily after a long day at work. It’s proven to be enormously popular with over 200,000 people on the waitlist.

(Image credit: Rachel Joy Barehl)

Okay, this list has two peelers on it, but that’s good because a decent peeler is worth almost as much as a decent knife. And have you ever julienned a large amount of vegetables by hand? Then you know there’s got to be a better way. And this small, simple julienne peeler is your better way. Promise.

(Image credit: CB2)

Breaking all the rules is often fun, and this rainbow-colored iridescent flatware is nothing if not fun. Breaking all the rules is also controversial, and you could say the same about this flatware. Some will love it and some won’t. Either way, you can guarantee it will get your guests talking at your next dinner party!

(Image credit: Faith Durand)

Here is the perfect solution for bringing your lunch to work or school while at the same time avoiding wasteful paper products as well as potentially harmful plastic. The stainless steel bento comes in several sizes and configurations, from single-tray options to ones with multiple compartments. Faith likes to secure hers with a bento strap to keep the lid on tight.