Those who love to cook know that having the right kitchen tools is essential to executing culinary creativity with ease.
While there’s nothing wrong with holding onto a well-done skillet or that trusty wooden spoon that spends more time leaning over a pot of simmering water than it does in the drawer, a few new and improved additions can make all the difference for whoever’s in charge of the cooking.
If this sounds like the mom in your life, you’re probably overdue for some serious kitchen upgrades. And what better time to gift a mom who loves to cook some new gear than Mother’s Day?
Food Network host, cookbook author, blogger, and mother of four Ree Drummond knows all about cooking for herself and her family, so Good Morning America’s “Pioneer Woman” tapped herself to share some of her kitchen picks for shopping just in time for Mother’s Day.
Scroll to see her recommendations!
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Ree Drummond’s best kitchen gadgets to replace or upgrade any mom who loves to cook
“When asked what the most important kitchen tool I think is, I say a good kitchen knife,” Drummond told Good Morning America in an email. “This amazing multi-purpose knife is my favorite, and I’m not sure where my life would be in the kitchen without it. It’s very sharp and feels great in my hand, and its flat tip is easy to use in many ways.”
Drummond also suggested investing in a mandolin to help make slicing and other prep work a breeze. The tool is commonly used in professional kitchens to obtain perfectly even slices from very thin to small pieces.
“For moms who love to cook, I think this everyday skillet with a handle would make a great gift,” Drummond writes. “They’re generous in size and have high sides, so you can make sauces, stir-fries, or even soups. I actually have this pan in all three colors, because I use it a lot and love having a variety to make my kitchen look cool!”
“I also think that a good indoor electric grill is a great gift for moms, because sometimes you want to make grilled chicken or grilled burgers without having to go outdoors in wind or rain, or during the winter months,” Drummond said. . Check out her selection below.
“My final upgrade for moms who love to cook will be a precision cooker,” she said of the sous vide water bath technique adapted for use at home. “They were commonly used by professional chefs in restaurant kitchens in the past, but have become widely used by home cooks to cook fish, meat, and vegetables and to evenly heat pre-cooked foods. They also retain flavor and nutrients in a wonderful way.”
If you go with this gift, grab mom some reusable silicone bags or a vacuum sealer to seal foods to submerge under water, where they cook with precise temperature control for perfect results.
Ree Drummond’s kitchen picks the mom who needs options
Non-stick and stainless steel pans
“While it’s certainly great to have items in your kitchen that have multiple uses, there are some tools you should keep in your kit that have specific purposes depending on what you’re cooking,” Drummond explained. “One great example of this is a non-stick pan vs. stainless steel. When browning meats or making a sauce, I usually choose stainless steel, because it distributes heat evenly. Non-stick pans are also uniquely useful. I’ll usually use them for egg and cheese sauces and casseroles.” Daily pasta.
Various knives or knife sets
“I also highly suggest having different types of knives on hand because they each have different uses,” Drummond said. “I love my signature knife for slicing and dicing, but a utility knife is also a more versatile and precise option.”
She continued, “For fine slicing or paring, I’ll tend to grab a paring knife—the small size is really great for very specific jobs. Having a mold with several different styles of knives is key, so what you need is ready and waiting for you to pick up.”
Rey Drummond’s best time-saving kitchen tools
“Most people think of stand mixers as being about baking, but I use stand mixers for so much more than that,” Drummond said. “I love using it for chopping chicken, mashing cooked potatoes, kneading bread and pizza dough, just to name a few. It helps save time and my arm muscles.”
“Another tool that helps me save time, and bowls, when I’m at a loss, is an immersion blender — it’s capable of so much more, like blending fruit for smoothies, crushing vegetables for sauces, dipping parties and even grinding coffee beans,” Drummond said.
“I really get a lot of use out of a bench scraper, too. Its purpose is to scrape dough, but it’s a lifesaver for food prep. After slicing, you just scrape it into a pile, stack it, and transfer it directly into the pan, while also leaving your cutting board clean. It’s also a great tool for slicing brownies.” And lemon bars and other sweets.”
ABC News’ Casey Delbasso contributed to this report.