My go to items are my crockpots, my measuring tools (scale, cups, spoons,), my spice grinder (flaxseed) and my knife block. I also have a toaster oven and a blender that i use semi often but not as much as the others.
That does it! I am finally getting a dehydrator AND a toaster oven. What have I, as a single person with no one else around, been thinking? Both would really help me a lot. Good stuff. I should get the few other things I don't have, but for now it's two basics: toaster oven and dehydrator.
The rice cooker is the most important for me. I have never once successfully made rice on the stove top, it's always over cooked or under cooked, and always leaves a layer of burned rice on the bottom. Once i got the rice cooker, no problems at all. It's perfect.
I couldn't live without my crockpot. I am retired, but enjoy cooking up a big batch or curried chicken, or healthy chili and then freezing for later. I use to do this while at work, but now I have the benefit of smelling the wonderful food all day long. I also adore my rice cooker for lentils, rice, beans and quinoa. I haven't tried oatmeal in it yet, but have heard a lot of people do that. We shall see.
I love my enameled cast iron dutch oven & prefer it to a crock pot. An electric pressure cooker is nice though but can be a bit fiddly. Rice can cook nicely in the oven; no need for a rice cooker. I have a dehydrator but haven't used it in years. A really good blender is great for smoothies, but most of the items listed I've had & thrift stored!
My favorite feature on my oven, crock pot and rice cooker are the ability to set a delayed cook time. Then I can prep in the morning, set to start while I am at work, and dinner for the family is ready to dish up when I walk in the door. I don't have a food processor...just chop by hand, but I am considering one now that I do more batch cooking. Would be helpful when prepping more than one meal at a time. I am blessed with wrap around counters in my kitchen...and now that they are finally clear and clean I vow to keep them that way! :-)
For anyone with concerns about expense.... try the Goodwill, garage sales, etc. I got a George Foreman grill at a Goodwill for $6.50. This was not listed, but it is my "go to" right now!. Slice and spread out veggies (green tomatoes, Zucchini and yellow squash, turnips, onions, green peppers, (didn't like parsnips), plus fish, salmon, pork chops, hamburgers are great on the grill. I grill the veggies 6-8 minutes, brush on a little coconut oil, shut the lid and minutes later my meal is done. Dehydrator... get the biggest/best you can afford... it 's worth it. Blender.... check on line but a hand blender is amazing! Since I cook for one, I try to find things that will cook one meal, one portion...
Of the listed items, I only own one: a food scale I bought at a dollar store when I started this journey. I can't even think of buying any of those things - I've never owned them, and I now do all my cooking in a microwave, because my stove no longer works and I can't afford to get it fixed. Yet, I am managing to eat healthy - VERY inexpensively, because I have no money coming in and I am living on credit card cash advances, hoping my company MAY survive - we're struggling to try to make it. Exercise is still free, thank God - and I did make it past my goal weight without any of those expensive items.
I just got a blender/food processor combo as an engagement gift. I haven't even taken it out of the box yet, mostly due to lack of space. I look forward to making smoothies in the blender and trying out the food processor.
I just priced a few of the items at Wal-mart, not bad. I've also seen soem items at thrift stores. The old juicers look like they will leave a big mess. haven't thought of just asking around. This is one I think I'll try.
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