Make meals easier with these kitchen gadgets

April 16, 2020

Hello my friends! I've been busy on a paint project I hope to reveal next week. Until then, I wanted to share a few of my favorite kitchen gadgets I've been using a TON lately.

Now that we're eating more at home (more meals and just...more) these have been on a constant rotation around here. I've had them all for a long time, but have used them more in the past month than I did in the past six months!

I don't mind cooking -- I've shared quite a few delicious recipes over the years. But I'm all for anything that makes meals quicker and easier. These all save a lot of time and effort!

My favorite popcorn popper

I've told you about this one before, but it works so great it's worth mentioning again. If you like popcorn as much as I do, it's a must! I've tried all kinds of poppers, even doing it on the stove just in a pan. My go-to used to be this popper you would stir, but it would get beat up so quick, I was always replacing them. I was on the lookout for something new. 

I found this one at Homegoods, but you can get them all over! It's the Dash popcorn popper:
Easiest popcorn popper for great price
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I love it because you just fill it up and turn it on...that's it. You use the little cup that fits on top to measure your popcorn: 
How to use Dash popcorn popper

Pour that inside and then just turn it on! You do NOT add butter or oil to the machine. 

The cool thing is you can put your butter in that same cup and it will melt with the heat of the popper: 
Easy and fast popcorn with Dash popper

Then just pour it on! 

Lately we've been really into this movie theater butter (which I'm sure if full of horrible stuff, but it's GOOD) along with real butter, but both are delicious. 

My favorite thing about this popper is how easy it is, but I also love that it pops WAY more of the kernels than any other way I've tried: 

Best popcorn popper

**I recommend using regular sized kernels -- the small ones tend to go crazy in this thing and fly out everywhere. 

**Also, turn it off before the last few kernels are popped so the popcorn doesn't go flying.  

You can find this Dash popcorn popper here or here

Quick and easy egg cooker

This one will only be useful if you like eggs -- and if you do, it's a game changer! I know boiling eggs is not hard. But this Dash egg cooker is quicker and even easier:
easy hard boiled eggs with Dash egg cooker

Dash seems to carry a lot of helpful kitchen gadgets!

For hard boiled eggs (my preference), you just have to poke a tiny hole in each egg with this tool:
How to use Dash egg cooker

Then fill the measuring cup with the appropriate amount of water and pour it in: 

egg cooker for hard, soft or poached eggs

Flip the switch and it will beep and turn off when finished. That's it!

I find these are WAY easier to peel than those I make on the stovetop. Other than the ease, that's the best part about this cooker.

**The eggs will be HOT! Take care when removing them.

You can find this Dash egg cooker here and here!

Air fryer for quick meals 

This one has been used the most of all! I LOVE our air fryer!!: 
Power xl air fryer for easy and quick meals

You can cook meat and meals in it, but we haven't tried much of that yet. 

It's so great for snacks like chicken nuggets, pizza rolls, tater tots...basically everything that's not good for you. ;) I've made potato wedges in it as many foods come out perfectly in this thing: 
air fryer for making quick and easy meals

The size isn't huge, but I stack food and it comes out great. Sometimes I pull it out half way through and mix them up a bit. 

You can adjust the time and temp -- they give you guidelines but I find it's better to test it out and see what works best. I use the 350 temp most often and rarely have to cook anything longer than ten minutes: 
What to cook in air fryer

I recently started making our bacon in it and it comes out perfectly crispy! I love it!

It saves the time it takes to preheat the oven, and usually cooks faster than it would in the oven. Clean up is pretty easy -- just take the tray out and wash both parts. 

You can find our Power Air Fryer here or here.

Have you used any of these gadgets? If you have an air fryer I'd love to know what you make in it. I think if you try these you'll find them incredibly helpful! 

A couple years ago I asked for tips on using the pressure cooker...and I still haven't used it once. I really need to attempt it but it intimidates me. (Check out the comments in that post for helpful tips and recipes!)

**You can pin this for later with this image: 
Helpful kitchen gadgets for quick and easy meals

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  1. I love my air fryer. I roast veggies, cook pork chops, etc. I made crab cakes in it the other night. And, because of you, I started cooking bacon in it and I will never cook it another way ever again. It keeps the grease contained inside and the bacon turns out great. I cut it in half so it cooks evenly and it's perfect every time, so Thanks for that tip!

  2. Thanks for sharing! I want an air fryer so bad, but my kitchen is too small to store it! ❤️✨

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  3. My Instapot cooks perfect hard boiled eggs that peel easily. Whole potatoes and corn on the cob cook in minutes. I’ll never go back to “boiling”. I love my air fryer - my hubs thinks the air fried chicken is better than his mom’s.

  4. I started out with a small air fryer and then this past Christmas my husband got me a 10.5 quart air fryer. It wasn't even on my list but he said it was a great price and thought I'd get more use out of the bigger one. Boy was he right! I've made homemade chicken tenders; chicken breast (just spray with butter, and sprinkle salt, black pepper and garlic powder - YUMMY); air fryed chimichangas; homemade French fries; "deep fried" Oreos and Reese's Peanut Butter cups; potato skins; grilled cheese and a whole chicken.

  5. I LOVE my air fryer!! I have a bigger one and use it daily. It's a lifesaver. Helps me not burn things when I'm busy multitasking and forget about what I'm cooking lol. I make crispy baked chicken (it's like fried, pork chops, fries, fried green beans, tater tots, reheat pizza, hot dogs, burgers, you can even make boiled eggs, bacon, etc. You name it, I air fry it! And my girls can cook with it... even husband can follow my instructions and cook!! Win Win :)

  6. Something that's awesome in the airfryer that I wouldn't have thought on of on my own is ravioli! We put it in there on 350 for 7 minutes and it's amazing! Sometimes I flip them over, it depends which ones I buy, but the texture of the pasta is wonderful made that way. :-)

  7. I have the same air fryer, and use it a lot. Great for chicken wings and onion rings, wish I had enough counter space to leave out all the time, I would use it more. I bought the carpet shampooer yu recommend, too, and like it. I have no desire for the Instant Pot, we are only two in our household, so don't need one.

  8. Got my wife and I a good deal online for the Yedi Air Fryer XL 12.7 Qt this past christmas, to replace our smaller 6 or 8 Qt one, and Oprah is right: It's awesome! You can make a whole game hen and do like eight skewers (shrimp & veggies turn out perfect) on the rotisserie, and although it doesn't cook things quite as fast as the smaller fryer (maybe an extra couple minutes is all) due to more surface area, you can make way more food at once. It has something like 17 pre-sets for everything from toast to defrost to cake. It also is a dehydrator! Super easy to clean too. Makes perfect crostini in under 5 mins, and chicken breasts only need seasoning to come out crispy on the outside and perfectly tender inside. We only use our oven for stuff that doesn't fit in the fryer, haha.

    I can also vouch for the Dash egg cooker -- The little omelette pan it comes with makes eggs perfectly for home-made egg Mcmuffins.

    The Instant Pot... My wife & I were also intimidated at first, but it's relatively easy once you go through the motions with it a handful of times. The soups/chx stock/stews you might normally toss in the slow cooker get insanely more flavorful in the IP because everything is so much more concentrated and evenly-cooked! Roasts are also intensely better than in the oven. We still are perfecting our IP rice game but it's getting there, hahaha.

  9. My air popper is and older version of yours. It's from the mid 80's (wedding present) and is still used a couple of times a week...


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