When transitioning to a plant-based diet, you’ll inevitably start to swap out your typical shopping list items for whole foods and fresh produce. But there’s another change to focus on: revamping your kitchen tools.
In addition to being well-equipped with the obvious, must-have utensils, including a sharp knife and bamboo cutting board (which are gentle on the blades), you’ll soon find the need for items that aren’t so obvious.
Below are the top six gadgets for your vegan kitchen to have you cooking like a plant-based pro:
1. Slow cooker
Add a handful of wholesome and delicious ingredients into one pot, and then get on with the rest of your day. What’s easier than that? Having an appliance do the cooking for you can offer a sigh of relief. Not to mention, you get to smell those amazing aromas as soon as you walk through the front door!
Here are some nourishing and simple slow cookers meals you can set and forget:
This tool is also a must-have for meal preppers. Slow cookers allow for bulk menus to be prepared in a breeze!
In a plant-based kitchen, sauces are king. Cilantro-lime dressing can turn a boring bowl of salad into a Mexican fiesta. A creamy cauliflower sauce can change an ordinary plate of pasta into a decadent vegan fettuccine alfredo. And a fresh homemade pesto spread can take your sandwich to the next level.
This gadget can also save you time. No need to chop garlic, peppers or nuts. Toss them into your food processor for some quick mincing, and you’re set. Even onions can be chopped with this tool, kissing those tears goodbye!
Zucchini noodles are a savory favorite among veg heads. Spiralizers are great for creating quick, pasta-inspired meals. But zucchini noodles, or “zoodles,” aren’t the only healthy and tasty food you can make with this tool.
Turning a huge head of cabbage into shreds for a salad, apples into slices for chips and peppers into strips for fajitas are all made with a simple twist of the wrist. And clean-up is a breeze. Simply remove the blade, put it in the dishwasher, and you’re left with a bowl of versatile goodness that’s ready to be turned into your next delicious creation.
This is a vital appliance for any plant-based kitchen, but especially for those who meal prep. Although not great for small batches (stick with a food processor for that), you can make large portions of sauces, dips, soups, spreads and dressings to cover your bases for the week.
Blenders also allow for you to enjoy nutrient-rich smoothies. And, unlike juicers, this appliance doesn’t remove the fiber from your fruits and vegetables. (Fiber keeps you fuller for longer, and helps with digestion.)
The best part about this tool is that it’s not just for lettuce! Place your produce into the spinner, rinse with water and hit the button to spin your delicious picks clean and dry!
This tool adds fun and speed to the mundane task of cleaning your produce (plus, it’s something your kiddos can enjoy helping with).
Plus, it pays for itself! Save time and money by washing your fruits and veggies in bulk and avoid expensive, pre-washed foods at the store.
Although this pick might have you thinking coffee, think again!
Grinders are great for whole flaxseeds, which help folks achieve healthy omega-3 levels. Grinding these seeds ensures their essential oils stay fresh. Buy the seeds whole, leave them in the fridge, and when you’re ready to enjoy them, simply grind them up. You can sprinkle them on a smoothie, in cereal or bake them into your favorite muffin.