Kitchen Essentials for $20 or less!

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It’s no secret I love any and all things kitchen related. Pretty much I’m obsessed. For real. I wouldn’t say I’m a hoarder.. but pretty darn close! I’ve grown my collection of goodies from places like Ross, TJ Maxx, Pier One Imports, Target, World Market, Home Goods, Kitchen Kneads, Love To Cook, Orson Gygi, JoAnns, and of course… Amazon! With the piles and piles of gadgets, accessories, dishes, pots, and pans, I still have the handful of things that I go back to time and time again. This list are those favorites. The things that if my house were burning down.. I’d risk my life for. OK well, maybe I wouldn’t go quite that far.. but if we were talking about items from my Kitchen Essentials Worth The Investment list.. you might find me dodging some flames in that scenario!

1. In the last couple of years the hubs and I have swapped out a lot of chemically filled products with the better alternative (see my Creating a Toxin-Free Home post for more on that). One of the things we got rid of was almost all of our plastic storage containers. Instead we opted for multiples of the Pyrex Glass Storage Set. We LOVE them. The benefit is that they don’t leach anything into your food, they don’t hang on to stains or odors, and they are easier to clean than plastic. Bonus: they are oven safe too! They are especially durable for being glass. Win/Win.

2. This probably seems silly. I mean, who uses a Stainless Steel Measuring Cup? I’ll tell you who. This girl. And this girl recommends it to YOU as well. I use it all.the.time. Crazy I know, but this is something that I just couldn’t part with if I had to, I’d miss it terribly. So what on earth do I use it for? Melting butter, coconut oil, peanut butter, honey… you name it. Because we don’t use (OK, the hubs doesn’t and I try REALLY hard not to) our microwave, this is the perfect alternative. It’s the perfect size and great for small jobs. 

3. If I had to count the number of measuring spoon sets I have you probably wouldn’t believe me. Just a guess, I’d say at least six. OK. Now that I say that out loud it doesn’t sound like that many. But really, it kind of is. Want to know what else? I use them all. When one goes missing I get frantic. Like I’ve lost a small child. Everyone must be accounted for. Measuring spoons included. My fav, fav, FAVORITE are the Progressive International Snap Fit Measuring Spoons. I mean, look at the fun colors?! So bright and cheery! I also have the Progressive Stainless Steel Snap Fit Measuring Spoons and Progressive Magnetic Measuring Spoons. Love them. 

4. You can’t have a truckload of measuring spoons without having an equal number of measuring cups. Am I right? It’s hard to pick a favorite, but the Progressive International Snap Fit Measuring Cups are pretty awesome. There’s just something about the snap fit that I just think is genius. While I don’t generally have a hard time keeping track of my measuring cups, the snap fit just makes it all that much easier to keep everyone together. 

5. Not only do I love my Silpat Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, I also love my ROUL’PAT Jumbo Workstation. Made by the same company, these two babies go hand in hand. I have four regular-sized Silpats and one quarter sheet. I never bake without them (unless by some freak chance they are all dirty or being used (which typically only happens around Christmastime when I’m baking like a wild son of a gun). I love how easy they are to clean and how super non-sticky they are. Perfect for making a batch of Lemon ‘Swig’ Style Sugar Cookies or Sugar Cookies with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. Oh great. Now I’m in the mood for cookies…

6. My sweet husband is one of the best gift givers. He’s always surprising me with fun kitchen do-dads that I never knew I wanted or needed until I get them and then they quickly turn into ‘take these gadgets away from me and you’ll die’. For Christmas a couple of years ago he surprised me with a Tovolo Silicone Spatula Set. Where were these my whole entire life? As with the measuring spoons and cups, I am also a spatula hoarder. These silicone ones are by far the ones that I reach for before any other. Doesn’t hurt that they come in the most fun bright colors!

7. This Garlic Twist came into the marriage from the hubs. At first I wondered why on earth you’d want to own one of these things. OK hear me out. I may own just about every kitchen doohickey that you could possibly think of *but* there are some things that I think.. ‘really? is that necessary’. Kind of like those weird banana slicers or hot dog cutters. A few months into the marriage, I realized I had to eat my words. This garlic twist is AMAZING. In fact, we’ve even given them as wedding gifts. For the garlic love in your life, they must have this! 

8. The Silicone Pot Holder Set is another one of those gems that the hubs gave me for Christmas. We had been using a wooden set that we’d bought a year or so ago. The problem with wooden pot holders is that over time with spillage and leakage of food juices, they’ll mold and get yucky and it’s virtually impossible to give them a good washing. Ain’t nobody got time for nasty pot holders. I mean, pulling that out in front of your dinner guests? How embarrassing! These silicone ones are also in the fun bright colors AND they are washable. Booyah.

9. Alright, there are some ‘as seen on tv’ things that are just ridiculous. Then there are some ‘as seen on tv’ things that are a pure stroke of genius. The Ove’ Glove is one of the latter. We received our first one as a gift in a fun care package from Steve’s sweet aunt. Loved it so much we didn’t just purchase one more, we bought TWO more of them! Three is kind of an odd number I realize, but it just worked out that way. Use them all.the.time. For sure the best oven mitt there is.

10. If you thought “who needs measuring cups made out of stainless steel?” when I mentioned my Stainless Steel Measuring Cup, you are probably thinking the same thing about the OXO Stainless Steel Scraper. But I assure you that this baby sure does come in handy for chopping and scooping! I’m constantly chopping up onions, carrots, olives, or berries and such.

Remember, this list is comprised of those must-have-can’t-live-without-I’d-(almost)-run-into-a-burning-building-for items. So if it’s on the list, it must be useful. Trust! ;)

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