Cooking is much easier when you’re using the right tool. The kitchen tools I use regularly have changed as I’ve transitioned to a plant-based diet.
Most of my meals consist of smoothies, salads or one-dish meals, which can be simpler and easier than cooking traditional American food. I do chop more vegetables, but wash a lot less pans and dishes. Here is my list of helpful tools that make life easier:
- Sharp kitchen knife.
I purchased a Zwilling J.A. Henckels knife from Costco when they had a knife vendor in the store. You can check this Costco link to see when the next Zwilling Special Event is scheduled in your area. I’ve also purchased a Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch from Amazon. The Victorinox knives are made by the same company that makes Swiss Army Knives. They are sharp, inexpensive and have good ratings. I also use their paring knife all the time. Victorinox Swiss Army Cutlery Straight Paring Knife, 3.25-Inch
2. Cutting Boards.
I enjoy having different sizes of cutting boards. My latest purchase was a small cutting board from Trader Joe’s made from olive wood. I use plastic boards, but prefer wood or bamboo. I would order this set. Organic Bamboo Cutting Board with Juice Groove (3-Piece Set) – Kitchen Chopping Board for Meat (Butcher Block) Cheese and Vegetables | Anti Microbial Heavy Duty Serving Tray w/Handles
I drink almost everything out of a mason jar. I love that they have lids for traveling and storing. However, please note a quart jar does not fit in a car cup holder. I still take them everywhere with me, and really need to purchase a cup holder adapter for my car. I also use jars for storing herbs, seeds & dried fruit. I received my mason jars from family members, no longer canning or I purchased them from the thrift store. They are sold on Amazon Ball Mason Jar-32 oz. Clear Glass Wide Mouth – Set of 4
I drink a lot of my meals. This is an easy way to get in more nutrition efficiently. Large reusable straws are helpful when drinking thick smoothies. When I first started drinking celery juice for medicinal purposes, I didn’t enjoy the taste. Having a straw was the perfect way for me to quickly drink my herbal medicine. I purchase the larger plastic bubble tea straws. Even though they are disposable, I wash them in the dishwasher a few times before disposing of them. I don’t like the metal straws. They are too cold for smoothies. The next time we need straws I will purchase these. Extra Wide Reusable Smoothie Straws, Great for Bubble Tea, Boba Tea and Milkshakes, 10.25 Inches Long, 10 Pieces Jumbo Eco Friendly Plastic Straws with 2 Cleaning Brushes, BPA Free
The best thing you can do for your health is to buy a juicer and use it. I purchased my Champion Juicer in the 1990’s, and have been juicing off and on for 30 years. I’ve been juicing at least once a day for over 2 ½ years and have noticed a boost in my health and energy. For the past 2 years I’ve been juicing with a Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus Centrifugal Juicer, Brushed Stainless Steel. I had to return it once, and am noticing the motor slowing down again, but I think it’s still a great juicer. My next juicer will be an Omega, and I will most likely need to purchase one next year. I’m looking forward to owning a Omega MM900HDS Medical Medium Slow Masticating Celery Juicer High Juice Yield Adjustable Dial, 200-Watt, Silver. If you are just getting started juicing, consider purchasing a used juicer.
I use nut-bags all the time for straining food. I put one in the pulp container when juicing, and squeeze out another 2-6 ounces of juice. When juicing every day this saves me money. I also use these bags to strain vegetables when making broth, to strain wild plants when making herbal honey, or to strain herbs when making larger batches of herbal tea. I love nut-bags. I just used one tonight after blending fresh cranberries in my blender. I strained the cranberry juice with a nut-bag, added lime juice & honey to make a refreshing drink. You can also purchase a produce bag, which will do the same thing. Trader Joe’s sell these inexpensive bags in their produce department. This is my favorite bag. Pro Quality Nut Milk Bag – XL12″X12″ Bags – Commercial Grade Reusable All Purpose Food Strainer – Food Grade BPA-Free – Ultra Strong Fine Nylon Mesh – Nutmilk, Juices, Cold Brew – Recipes & Videos… (1)
8. High Speed Blender.
I started out using the Ninja blender and loved it. I like the smoothie container with lids for easy travel like this one Ninja Professional Countertop Blender with 1100-Watt Base, 72 Oz Total Crushing Pitcher and (2) 16 Oz Cups for Frozen Drinks and Smoothies (BL660), Gray My first Ninja also had a food processor attachment, which I used a lot. The Ninja is easy to clean and powerful, but the plastic broke on different pieces after a year. If you purchase the Ninja from Costco, you can replaced it with the Costco warranty. I did this at least twice before I decided to purchase a Vitamix. The Vitamix is well-made and powerful. The blade isn’t removable for cleaning, but it cleans up easy blending soap and water for a few minutes. I purchased the larger Vitamix from Costco which is great when making 2 smoothies at a time, something I do every day. But my 64 oz. blender doesn’t blend well when making smaller quantities of thicker sauces – it pushes the ingredients to the side and doesn’t mix them together. I still use the smaller smoothie cup with the Ninja blender when blending smaller amounts of thick sauces. Vitamix E320 Explorian Blender Black, 64 oz