Kitchen tools

What kitchen utensils make cooking more fun?

Various kitchen utensils seen from above on a wooden table

Photo: Pierre Starck (Getty Images)

Sometimes you have to slowly pull yourself out of the thick of your screen-to-work day, cutting your media feed with more and more sucrose until you find a pleasant note to close your laptop to and do a fucking walk. Today, the drug of choice is a BuzzFeed listicle called “28 things that will help you make cooking fun if you’re more of an eat-to-live type.“That title is a bit of a stretch, but it promises a chance to embark on a parade of unitasker gadgets, each designed to make a practical item more frivolous. Join me, shall we? Let’s all enjoy the internet warm glow, glowing, warming.

The list starts with a bear-shaped stainless steel grater that, while cute, seems harder to store in a drawer than my flat-panel utility model. In fact, a running theme throughout this list is “things that look like other things”: a pizza cutter that looks like an axe, a crab-shaped spoon holder, a garlic press vampire bats, lightsaber chopsticks – I can’t imagine the grueling ordeal of cooking a meal entirely with fancy paraphernalia, but maybe I’m a curmudgeon who places too much emphasis on the efficient use of cabinet space. (And isn’t it nice to think about crab-shaped spoon holders at the end of a long day?)

The other products on the list seem to really appeal to these “eat for a living” type people and make them more willing to cook a meal. Ready-to-eat bags of seasoned beans are a nifty way to meet the needs of reluctant home cooks, as is a small $20 breakfast sandwich maker (assuming people who hate cooking are also averse to switching what they eat each day). As much as I might complain about the practical impossibilities of some of these tricks, it’s true that some tools can make cooking more fun, making it an overall easier undertaking. What tools, gadgets, appliances or utensils have increased your enjoyment in the kitchen?