Tools for every level of home cook

Tools for every level of home cook

Tools for Every Level of Home Cook

We are big believers in the “buy less, buy better” philosophy which means being aware of your needs and shopping appropriately — that includes food, clothes, and household gadgets. And while we believe most people have a well enough equipped kitchen to keep up with the monotony of weeknight dinners made of meat, veg and mash, there are different tiers of cookers who might be interested in a more well-equipped kitchen. We’ve identified three different kind of kitchen dwellers: kitchen hackers, from-scratch bakers and the too-busy-to-bother’s, and we’ve devised a short list of must-haves to achieve their unique goals.

The Kitchen Hacker

The kitchen hacker enjoys the process of cooking but isn’t a fan of the more tedious aspects, we’re talking peeling garlic, julienning a carrot, standing over a slowly boiling pot — all of that is great for building flavour and visual interest but not great for maintaining interest in the kitchen. If you’re a kitchen hacker, who loves getting maximum flavour for minimum interest, invest in these four pieces of equipment:

Salad chopper
This salad chopper doesn’t just break up lettuce leaves, it can do anything! This includes onion, carrot pieces, rotisserie chicken, mince. The time-saving doesn’t just come from ditching the knife and chopping board for salads, but being able to run your entire plate through for a delicious, filling and easy salad! It also helps with reducing washing up (no knife or chopping board!).

Meat thermometer
This meat thermometer could go in any category because we honestly believe everyone should have one (even the meat, veg and mash people). The “hack” element of this piece of equipment is that you don’t have to hover over your meat while it cooks in the pan, wondering if it’s cooked, if it's burning or going to become dry. Instead of having to cut open your meat in the pan to peek inside, or risk getting sick from undercooked fish or chicken, you just insert the thermometer and temp check. Now you have the time and mental energy to look elsewhere on your order of operations.

Large ice block moulds with lid
This piece of equipment is great for loads of things: make sure of wilting herbs by freezing them with oil to use in cooking, freeze portions of cooked food to eat for leftovers, pre-portion your meals if your watching your calories, make and store your homemade stocks and so much more! Silicone moulds can be used in your microwave or air fryer as well to bake small goods like single-serve brownies or cakes! 

Rice cooker
Similar to the meat thermometer, the rice cooker is a set-and-forget, so you can work on adding more complex flavour to your thai curry. In the end you’ll have perfectly cooked, unburned rice and a delicious thai curry and 50% less cleaning up!

From-scratch Bakers

From-scratch bakers are a different level of kitchen connoisseur, and don't just bake sweet desserts. Baking includes making breads, pies and pastry. Plus, the following list of appliances aren’t just useful for baking, but all kinds of foods.

Mixer (hand and stand)
Both a hand and stand mixer are great for combining batters, doughs and mixtures. The stand mixer specifically reducing kneading time, clean up and frustration at sticky, flour-y dough. World-renowned mixers like the KitchenAid and Kenwood can take your cooking/baking to the next level with attachments like meat grinders, pasta extruders, blenders and more. However, if you’re just interested in starting out, a less expensive option is still great for achieving doughs, batters and more.

Food processor
Many home cooks use their food processor for doughs, sauces, chutneys, jams and more. It’s basically a more compact blender. While you wouldn’t be making smoothies in a food processor, you can break down roasted tomatoes, pumpkin and onion for soup and save space in your appliance garage. 

Digital scale
A digital scale is similar to the meat thermometer because we think everyone should have one. A digital scale is necessary for more accurate cooking and baking. One cup of flour could have a different volume depending on the flour and how it's measured, which could mess up your dough or cake by throwing off the hydration. It’s also great for portion sizes, if that’s your jam. 

Dutch oven
A dutch oven is great for everyone, of course, but especially for bakers. The dutchies versatility from the oven to the stovetop to the table is great for shaping and proofing loaves, developing crust and deepening flavour in the oven. It is also great for braising meats, soups and pastas in one pot. This increases flavour and reduces washing up. 


The last category is too-busy-to-bother, which is when you’re too busy to even bother with meat, veg and mash (tbh). We get it, but being too busy shouldn’t prevent you from eating delicious and nutritious meals. It is certainly easier to eat healthy with much less effort in winter with soups, stews and broths, but these four pieces of equipment can still make a difference.

The Thermomix takes multi-use tool to the extreme, functioning as a blender, food processor, steamer, scale, and more. It chops, mixes, blends, cooks, steam and weighs ingredients all in one bowl — wow! The Thermomix is ideal for throwing everything in a pot, setting and forgetting. Another great thing about the Thermomix is its inbuilt recipe book, so it can tell YOU what to cook for dinner and not the other way around. 

Instant pot/pressure cooker
The magic of the pressure cooker is the cooking times. You can make deliciously braised meat, deeply flavourful soups, broths and more in a quarter of the time cooking on the stovetop or in the oven. With the instant pot, you can decide what to have for dinner and have it served within an hour of passive cooking time. Combining this magic machine with some others like the rice cooker, stand mixer or dutch oven means you can have beef stew and freshly made bread, roasted tomato soup cooked in bone broth or fresh rice with mango chicken as soon as possible with as little effort. That sounds like quite an upgrade from microwave rice and pre-packed butter chicken.

Slow cooker
Kind of the opposite of the instant pot but with the same benefits. Set and forget your soup, stew or pasta dish in the morning and come home to a warming, deliciously flavoured dinner.

Air fryer
Days come where even something like the Instant Pot or the Dutch Oven are too much effort, and we don’t think there’s any shame in taking a shortcut if it gives you more time to rest and repair. What we mean is, sometimes frozen food for dinner is okay. To put dinner on the table even faster, we suggest an air fryer. People have been touting the air fryer as the biggest life saver in the kitchen and we can understand why. It is easier to clean than an oven or deep fry pot, it’s healthier without the use of excess oil, and it’s way faster than cooking in the oven. Frozen chips which would take 40 mins to get crunchy and cooked through in the oven take less than 20 in a pre-heated air fryer. There’s all sorts of additions and gadgets these days to make cooking in the air fryer even easier, too. 

Whoever you are, whichever category you fall into, we suggest investing where you can in equipment and appliances that will make a difference in your life and allow you to get the most out of your kitchen. And for the days when simply the microwave or 40 minutes in the oven is the best you can do, check out our ready-made meals. If you're ready to impress, try to make our Carbonara Pizza with the dough made from scratch.