I'll never forget one time my mother was in my apartment and asked me for a garlic press. I told her I don't use a garlic press and her response was, "Oh my god a kitchen gadget you don't have!" So yes, I'll admit it, I am a gadget junkie. And in case you're stressed about my lack of a garlic press, rest assured I have a much better gadget which you can read about below. So without further adieu here are my latest and greatest. They're all under $50! Just click the photos to shop.
1. Naturally, I'll start with the Chef'n GarlicZoom Garlic Chopper. Gone are the days when you'd lose half your garlic clove on the inside of the garlic press and gone are the days of garlic smelling hands (though personally, not a smell I mind.) This garlic mincer checks all my boxes. Minces several cloves at a time? Check. Dishwasher safe? Check. No need to touch the garlic? Check. Kinda fun to play with? Check. Perfectly minced (not smushed) garlic. You guessed it - check. Splurge for the XL because you know every recipe requires 3 times the amount of the suggested garlic.
2. Next up is my favorite Evo Oil Spray Bottle. By now you know that Pam and similar products are just regular oils in a spray bottle. Not only does this refillable bottle save money and the environment, it also gives you the chance to use your favorite oils in spray form. I've tried other spray oil bottles including the ever popular Misto, but this is by far the best. The spray is really even and covers a good amount of surface area so one quick shpritz is often more than you need. I use this on pans for cooking, directly on my vegetables for roasting and sometimes on my lettuce in place of any other dressing. Once you switch to this spray bottle you'll be surprised by how little oil you really need.
3. If you're tired of halves rotting in your fridge (half an avocado, a lemon, a can of chickpeas..) you need to get FoodHuggers. These silicone lifesavers preserve the freshness of leftover fruits and vegetables and can be used as covers for open cans. I started with this set of four and it's always been enough for me, but if you tend to go through more produce than average they do sell them in bigger quantities. Say hello to FoodHuggers and goodbye to rotting halves.
4. Ever since I got the Amazon Echo Dot cooking in the kitchen has become much easier. Primarily, I use it for timers. You might be thinking, "Couldn't you just use your phone?" Sure, but with wet or contaminated hands do you really want to be opening your phone? When you're multitasking in the kitchen you often forget to set the timers and before you know it you find yourself thinking"...how long has that chicken been in there?" With the Echo, you just speak to Alexa and tell her what to do (read: boss her around.) Other features I love: Alexa can play your music from Spotify or other apps and can reorder your Amazon staples.
5. I'm a huge advocate of Ball Mason Jars. I like Ball brand specifically because they have measurements on the side of the jars, so they double as measuring cups. I have these in pretty much every size, and I find them increasingly useful. I often make a huge sauce for the week and use it in everything - eggs, fish, chicken, veggies. These jars are a convenient way to store them. Some other things I love to use them for include ice coffee cups, flour and sugar storage, homemade jams, and for freezing stocks and bone broths.
6. And how do I make said sauces? Gotta give it up for my Black & Decker 8 Cup Food Processor. I'm sure there are better food processors on the market, but this one is very affordable and durable; I've had it since college and I've only had to replace it once. I use this mostly for making marinades from herbs which are on the brink of death, but I also use it often for hummus and other Israeli dips.