Australian consumer experts CHOICE has revealed the five ‘game changing’ kitchen gadgets every household should invest in.
The experts said having a handful of essential appliances can help you save time and money every time you cook or meal prep.
The must-have tools include a kitchen mixer, food processor, cast-iron pot, stick blender and a pressure cooker.
The first gadget you should consider buying is a quality kitchen mixer.
Not only are they designed for baking cakes or pavlovas, but the experts said you could create just about anything from scratch with the versatile mixer.
‘With the right attachments, you can transform them into mincers, pasta makers, blenders and citrus presses. And of course they can take all the hard work out of kneading bread and pizza dough,’ Choice’s food writer Alice Richard said.
Alice explained how a food processor can chop, slice and dice ingredients in a flash, making meal prepping easier and faster than ever.
‘It’s the ultimate kitchen workhorse: it can make short work of time-consuming cooking tasks so you can turn out a restaurant-quality meal in no time,’ she said.
She said it’s important to look out for a features like a pulse function for making things like shortcrust pastry, reversible blade (one side grates, the other slices), a double feed chute, integrated scales, and beater and whisk disc attachments.
If bench space is an issue in your kitchen, Alice suggested a mini food processor will still do the job.
Alice said having the right cookware can make a huge difference to perfecting a dish.
‘Good cookware can make or break a meal: you need to be able to sauté, sear and simmer well to create a good dish,’ she explained.
She said a non-stick frypan is a must in any kitchen and a cast-iron casserole pot, also known as a Dutch oven, is a ‘versatile piece’ for slow cooking, roasting and even baking bread.
If you’re strapped for time in the kitchen, Alice suggested investing in a stick blender because they’re ‘easier, lighter and faster to use than a regular blender’.
‘They’ll also save you on washing up: not only are they faster to clean than regular blenders, you can puree, whip or emulsify ingredients in whichever vessel you’re cooking in, so you won’t create extra dirty dishes,’ she explained.
For those looking to buy a stick blender, Alice suggested getting one that has sealed controls so food doesn’t get into the crevices and a pulse function for blitzing small quantities of dry foods.
For quick, easy yet delicious slow-cooked meals, Alice said a pressure cooker is worth buying for your kitchen.
‘Cooking lamb shanks? That’ll take you seven hours in a slow cooker, 2.5 hours on a stove top, but only 45 minutes in a pressure cooker – winning,’ she said.
She said slow cookers can take up to eight hours to create a slow cooked meal while a pressure cooker can serve you dinner in just 45 minutes.
Alice suggested buying a pressure cooker with different pressure settings, steam release valve, easy-to-use controls and steaming and warming features.