I am either a 20min cook (“ain’t got time for dat”) or a set it and forget it cook and these are my essentials for making it all happen for me in the kitchen.
ALSO, no hay que estar cocinando to’ los dias so make a portion big enough to save for tomorrow’s lunch and if you can swing it, tomorrow’s dinner as well!
I always think about “How much easier can I make my life” so I own A LOT of kitchen gadgets (like A LOT and I can talk about them for DAYS) but for starters figured I’d at least hook you up with the gadgets I use on a daily/weekly basis.
LEMON SQUEEZER: my hand strength is WEAK girl!! So this tool is a must. I use it daily to make my big morning pot of tea.
DEEP POT: for one-pot recipes: not only does ya girl EAT but as much as I enjoy cooking, I’m not trying to be cooking every day.
Every dominican household, including mine, has this one.
But I also LOVE and use my LE CREUSET cookware.
TUPPERWARE: to store that extra food (and pack for lunch if you’re headed out!)
BIG OVEN PANS: for one-pan recipes: I use this for everything. Mornings for cooking bacon (*yes, I’m a “cook bacon in the oven” girl. Got hot oil splattered all over me one too many times and I just can’t anymore) and evenings for roasting veggies.
ALL THE PAPER GOODS: aluminum foil, and parchment paper for easy cleanup of those big oven pans.
FRYING PAN: any non-stick will do (I currently have Calphalon pots and pans BUT I must admit both the Always & Caraway pans are calling my name).
KITCHEN SCISSORS: why do they make meat packaging so difficult to open? Scissors are CRUCIAL… get two, trust me on this. When you’re cutting open meat packages and they get dirty you have another on deck.
CUTTING BOARDS: we’ve built in a cutting board into our kitchen island (which is CLUTCH) but we still use and have cutting boards for all the other essentials PLUS it’s multi-purpose (can be used as serving platters).
MEASURING SPOONS/CUPS: im a big “recipe” cook which means everything calls for measurements so these and these are a must — again, get two… I don’t like having to wash and reuse the spoons in the middle of recipes, just messes with my cooking flow lol so having a couple on deck is where it’s at. Stainless steel is preferred over plastic.
TOASTER: because we don’t shun carbs in this house, OKURRR.
BLENDER: when I’m making smoothies I am usually making them for 2 (sometimes 3!) so my Vitamix is perfect but there are times when I just want to make 1 serving and quite frankly the cleanup process for the Vitamix is A LOT so having a personal blender is CLUTCH. It’s multi-purpose TOO! You can blend your smoothie AND drink from it as well; blending and drinking cup in one. Not gonna lie, I’m not really a smoothie girl (I like to eat my food, not drink it) but when I’m in the mood, I’m in the mood.
My fave “set it and forget it” gadgets: not in the 20min cooking category BUT only takes a 20min prep and then you let it do its thing so same thing. To-MAY-to, to-MAH-to; po-TAY-to, po-TAH-to… same thing.
INSTANT POT: a must-have. No explanation necessary.
SLOW COOKER: if you can, get on with the BROWING feature and have your life forever changed (no more searing meat before placing in the slow cooker).
SOUS VIDE: if you’re looking to make the juiciest meat you’ve ever eaten (fish included!) you need this in your life.