5 Kitchen Tools You Need To Cook Your Way To Better Health
Written by: Joanne Beccarelli
I am a kitchen geek!
Yep, I’m that person that is in heaven in a kitchen supply store and someone who actually uses and cherishes the tools I have. But don’t get overwhelmed at the thought of it or roll your eyes. I am not someone who will purchase every random gadget that is created. You know what I am talking about – those items that sit in a drawer and never get used after the honeymoon is over. Hint: donate these to a local tag sale fundraiser.
After spending my entire life in the kitchen (psst, I’m Italian!) and taking my passion to health coaching and writing a cookbook, I have favorites in the kitchen that I reach for almost everyday. And while I see merit in other tools, like good pots and pans, there are 5 key tools that will make cooking easier, infuse your cooking with fun and change your health.
It’s proven as well! According to the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, “when people cook most of their meals at home, they consume fewer carbohydrates, less sugar and less fat than those who cook less or not at all – even if they are not trying to lose weight.”
Let’s get cooking!
5 Kitchen Tools That I Can’t Live Without
1. Knives (An 8-10 Inch Chef Knife, A Paring Knife)
In order to cook you must be able to slice, dice, mince, chop and julienne, which is usually done with a chef’s knife. Then if you have peeling or other intricate knife work to do, a paring knife will be your tool.
In both cases a good quality knife that is razor sharp is key. It is better to buy from a top quality manufacturer like Henckels or Wusthof, than to buy a complete set of TV promotion knives. When prep work is made easy, so is cooking.
Whether you know it or not, you need a great blender. If you are not using a blender a few times a week, you simply have the wrong one that is probably not powerful enough. My Vitamix blender is used daily to make smoothies, drinks, soups, sauces, salsas and nut milks and although pricey, it is going strong after 15 years!
More affordable options like a Nutribullet work great too. The point is that your blender needs to be powerful enough to pulverize ice cubes, which is the easiest test of all on how good a blender is.
3. Food Processor
You might not think you would use a food processor much, but think of it as combining knife skills and mixing. It can slice, shred, mix and blend in a large wide container. I use it to make hummus, bean dips, coleslaw, salads, pesto, salsa, nut butters, nut cheese and dough. With this much versatility, it is easy to include lots of whole foods into your diet.
The spiralizer is a new tool for most people and it is revolutionizing the way a lot of people eat vegetables by turning them into noodles! If you are a pasta lover and know that wheat is your nemesis, then a spiralizer is right for you. It can turn almost any vegetable into a pile of noodles that simply need your favorite sauce, sans guilt!
Using a spiralizer is also a sneaky way to add more vegetables in ways that don’t resemble vegetables for those that need to be fooled. Plus using this tool is much like playing with a kids toy – fun!
Not everyone is going to agree with me that they need a juicer, but if you are looking to supercharge your nutrition, adding a daily fresh vegetable juice is the way to go. With the explosion of juicing on the health scene, so many people are weighing in on the woes and dangers of juicing, but these kinds of statements just prove that the speaker does not know how to use juicing properly.
Juicing is the absolute easiest way to add 5 servings of vegetables into your diet in one 16 ounce drink. I have written extensively on why and how to juice and am a Certified Juicing Coach that is happy to answer your questions. Just ask!
Having the right tools changes everything in the kitchen and that changes everything about your health. Let me know in the comments below what your essential picks for the kitchen are and your favorite ways to use them. I’d love to hear more about what works for you, where you need more help and am happy to help you fall in love with cooking healthfully.
Joanne Beccarelli is a holistic health coach, juicing junkie, writer, soon to be cookbook author and recovered emotional eater. Inspired by many great voices in the health-thru-food revolution, Joanne found her way out of hiding in shame (losing almost 100 lbs in the process) and stepped away from the corporate world. She now dedicates every day to helping others who are overwhelmed, overworked, and overstressed, find awareness, fulfilment and better health.
Joanne has a Certificate in Plant Based Nutrition from eCornell/T. Colin Campbell Foundation, and became a Certified Health Coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. She is also a member of American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP), and the International Association of Health Coaches (IAHC).
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