Cooking a healthy dinner from scratch can be an overwhelming task for many of us. That’s why we do all the prep work for you at Hungryroot. And when you’re taking a break from Hungryroot (we understand, it happens), here are some of our favorite kitchen tools that’ll help you whip healthy, delicious meals in no time.
- Food Processor
Sauces, Spreads Condiments: Need to make a pesto and don’t have a mortar and pestle? Just throw everything in your food processor and stream in the olive oil with the motor running. You can also use this machine to make homemade hummus, nut butter, or dreamy cashew cream (a.k.a., a vegan’s best friend). Check out this guide for cashew cream from The Kitchn.
Chop Veggies: If you have to chop up a bunch of veggies for a roast or a stir fry but are feeling lazy, just toss them in your food processor. To finely dice up vegetables like peppers or onions, use the S blade, and to shred vegetables like cabbage or potatoes, use the reversible slicing/shredding disc.
Snacks & Desserts: You can also use a food processor to make ultra-popular bliss balls or energy bites. Simply toss in your nuts, dried fruit, and superfoods, and and blend away.
2. Electric Pressure Cooker
The Instant Pot has taken the culinary world by storm. And for good reason. This affordable 7-in-1 electric pressure cooker makes cooking simple for all kinds of chefs. Not only can you use it like a traditional pressure cooker, you can also use it as a slow cooker, a rice cooker, and a yogurt maker (to name a few functions).
Simplify your meal prep by using an electric pressure cooker or slow cooker to cook your proteins, from lentils and beans to meats and fish. Batch cook grains like buckwheat or brown rice in half the time (or less) it takes on the stove. And whip up sauces, oatmeals, and side dishes to round out your weekly meal prep.
3. Immersion Blender
Don’t have the budget or counter space for a bulky Vitamix? Try a compact immersion blender instead. While it won’t be able to produce those towering bowls of fluffy nice cream that are oh-so-popular on Instagram, it can do a lot of other useful things.
Cooked a big pot of soup and don’t feel like transferring it to a blender or food processor to purée it? Just use a handheld immersion blender (also called a “stick blender) to purée the soup right in your pot.
Want to make fluffy, creamy mashed potatoes but don’t have a potato masher (or the arm strength)? An immersion blender can do the job.
Or maybe you love salsa but don’t enjoy chopping everything up? Add all your ingredients to a tall measuring cup and move the immersion blender up and down while blending until you have a smooth salsa. Note: this technique is not for chunky salsa lovers.
4. Oil Mister
Not all oils are created equally. For instance, olive oil is packed with heart-healthy monounsaturated fat and the olive oil-rich Mediterranean diet is considered one of the world’s healthiest diets. In contrast, hydrogenated vegetable oils and palm oil…not so great for your health.
But if you’re watching your calories, you might be reluctant to use any kind of oil in your cooking. If that’s the case, an oil mister can be a life saver. Spraying your pan with oil, instead of pouring it on, will save the number of calories and fat grams you consume. Plus, you get to control what goes into your oils, unlike the store bought cooking sprays which might have hidden ingredients lurking in them.
5. Garlic Press
If you’ve read the ingredient statements on our products, you know we love garlic. Packed with disease-fighting antioxidants and bursting with flavor, garlic is a staple in any healthy kitchen.
But we know peeling and slicing garlic by hand can be a laborious task, even if you have superb knife skills. Enter the garlic press. You can find a garlic press for $10 on Amazon and make the task of slicing, mincing, and crushing garlic quick and painless.
Health tip: maximize the nutritional prowess of garlic by letting it sit at room temperature for 10 minutes after slicing/crushing it and before consuming or cooking it. This process enables the disease-fighting enzyme allicin to form in garlic.
What are your essential kitchen tools and gadgets? Let us know below!