Can I share with you a secret before I tell you how to make the most out of your kitchen appliances? I'm a former kitchen appliance hoarder, ladies! Every time I go to a superstore and see a new kitchen appliance, I feel like a little girl who just saw the latest Barbie Doll on store shelves again! I love to create things in the kitchen and as a creative junkie at heart, kitchen appliances are one indulgence I love to take part in. Yet, with little counter space and hardly any cabinet space, I've learned some great ways how to make the most of your kitchen appliances over the years. I finally quit buying so many, sold the ones I didn't use and use the ones I love more often. Check out my favorite tips, start putting those appliances to good use and learn to make the most out of your kitchen appliances!
1. Be Picky
One trick I have to share with you to make the most out of your kitchen appliances is to be picky! Don’t keep what you don’t use. That 1980s electric can opener that is rusted and cracked? Donate it to Goodwill if you don’t use it. Or, if you’re in love with your mom’s classic old, original stand mixer even though it’s not the newest model, keep it! Keep which items you love and donate the rest, or sell them online. Hint, if you hate looking at it, curse at it every time it falls out of the cabinet or haven't even taken it out of the box, you probably don't need it!
2. Keep Multipurpose Items
When deciding which items it is you want to keep, think about which items are multipurpose items. For example, my three top appliances are my Vitamix, my immersion blender and my food processor. Why? Because all three of these can perform multiple tasks with one appliance. Yes, the Yonana’s machine is pretty stinking cool, but it only makes frozen desserts and doesn’t deserve the space in my kitchen. Exceptions are of course the coffee maker, which isn’t going anywhere in my kitchen, and I actually use it to brew loose leaf tea, not just coffee! Use your items for as many purposes as you can and you’ll get more use and more money, out of the ones you do choose to keep.
3. Designate a Space
Now that you know which items deserve a spot in your kitchen, designate a space for them. Don’t keep them in the box in your garage and tell yourself you’ll use them. Trust me; you won’t! Also, don’t put items under your cabinet, where you’re less likely to pull them out since you can’t see them. Keep the appliances you can make the most use out of in plain reach and plain sight. Your counter space is prime time real estate property in the kitchen, so be sure you give your appliances a piece of this space and you’ll use them more often. That being said, don’t dare use your counters for things you don’t use. This is the most accessible area to you on a daily basis.
4. Organize Your Pantry
If you don’t have enough counter space to store appliances, then organize your pantry so you can put items there instead. I keep my food processor right in the front and center of my pantry so I can easily reach it, along with my immersion blender. This tip helps you have easy access to these items so using them won’t seem like such a hassle.
5. Place like Items with like Appliances
Here’s a trick I came up with last year that might help you too: place similar items that you would use with an appliance beside the corresponding appliances to make using them easier, more accessible and appealing. For an example, I store my dried coconut, dried fruit, spices, onions, garlic and soup stocks beside my food processor and my immersion blender in the pantry. This way, when I go to make homemade energy bars or bites with my food processor, all my coconut, dried fruit and spices are within reach. I store my nuts and seeds in the fridge that I use to go in my energy bars, but any items I need for these in the pantry can be found right beside my food processor, which helps me remember to use it more often. I keep my soup stocks, onions and garlic near my immersion blender so that when I go to make soup with them, they are easily accessible. Beside my Vitamix are small containers of herbs I might use in a smoothie, sauce or dressing, cocoa powder to use in a smoothie or sauce, and all my mason jars are in the counter above it to store my smoothies in. Keeping like items with like appliances is a great tool for organizing and one I highly suggest anyone take advantage of. Just don’t forget to keep necessary ingredient items in the fridge above all else!
6. Find Recipes
One trick you can do to entice you to use your appliances is to start looking for recipes that use these items. I always like to go to the manufacturer’s website of the appliance to see if they have any creative recipes and ways to use the appliance, but I also go online to various search engines. You can search all major recipe websites and internet search engines for methods of cooking such as blending, mixing, food processor, etc. This might even help you find a new recipe to love! It also isn’t a bad idea to keep recipe cards near the appliance to remind you to make these items more often. Or, create Pinterest boards that you title “Food Processor,” “Blender,” etc. and store recipes online using these appliances. For example, I have an entire board dedicated to Vitamix recipes I can pull up in an instant on my smartphone while in the kitchen and always love finding new ways to use this magical machine!
7. Take Proper Care
Lastly, the best way to make the most out of any appliance is to take care of it! Clean it with a gentle soap, not a harsh detergent or bleaching agent. Wash directly after every use and please don’t put it in your dishwasher where it could warp or weaken the blade. One trick my mother always taught me that I use to this day is, “Wash as you go.” You won’t have to clean up afterwards if you do it as you go, and your appliances will be in better shape because of it too. Also be sure that you store the cords on items well. Don’t leave them near water, or anywhere that might cause an electrical hazard. Be gentle with your appliances. They aren’t cheap and can transform regular foods into modern day miracles!
What is your favorite kitchen appliance? If you have one, feel free to share it and even include your favorite dish you like to make in it. Or, if you have a tip for a great way to take care of appliances, feel free to share that too!