If you’re searching for the perfect kitchen gift for a mom in your life, look no further. Here are ten essential tools for anyone who loves to cook. I’m a personal chef for busy families in Charleston and I cook with these tools almost every day! They are all incredibly useful, easy to store, as well as clean, and you can find quality options in each category for under $50. So whether you’re looking for a time-saver, a money-saver, or just a foolproof gift, you can find the perfect present for all your favorite foodie moms.
(Tip: Click on the link for each item for reviews of various brands and versions of the kitchen essentials. Or you can just comment with any questions!)
Top 10 Kitchen Essentials for Foodie Moms
1.) Immersion Blender – Whenever someone asks for a good kitchen gift idea, this is my number one suggestion. It’s impressive enough to stand-alone as a gift and without a doubt, it is my most used kitchen appliances. I use it to whip up salad dressings, blend butternut squash soup, and even puree baby food in small batches. An immersion blender is easy to clean and takes up very little space in the kitchen.
2.) Portion Scoops – These little gadgets look like ice cream scoops, but they are so much more than that. With a portion scoop, your muffins cook evenly and there is less mess on the edges of the cupcake tins. Plus, they are great for portioning perfect meatballs. Pair one of these gadgets with the matching size muffin tin and you have a complete gift for the busy baking mama in your life.
3.) Potato Ricer – The potato ricer is in heavy rotation in my kitchen for making mashed root vegetables (you can find my recipe here). A potato ricer is like a massive garlic press, but for potatoes and other hearty vegetables. You can use it for butternut squash soup, roasted tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and even carrots & peas for the baby. Plus you don’t have to peel the veggies before you cook them. Every minute counts, mama! Just make sure that you choose a heavy-duty version of this essential kitchen tool as the cheaper ones tend to bend under pressure.
4.) Fish Spatula – Blunt, plastic spatulas are one of my pet peeves in the kitchen. But a fish spatula, also called a slotted offset spatula, is metal, thin, and almost sharp. So you can easily flip pancakes, fish, and chicken without tearing up your food. You might balk a little at the price of a single spatula, but in this case, you really do get what you pay for. Get this for a mom you know would never spend the money herself, but would really appreciate a precision kitchen tool.
5.) Microplane Grater – There are tons of grating options in the Microplane line, but my favorite is the long, thin, classic grater. It’s perfect for grating hard cheeses, garlic, ginger, citrus zest, and even hard spices like nutmeg and cinnamon. It is razor sharp and holds it’s edge for years, even with frequent use. One caveat though – try to keep it out of the dishwasher. It will dull the blades very quickly.
6.) Julienne Peeler – Fit mama’s love zucchini noodles, but no mama loves having another bulky, hard-to-clean kitchen gadget. (Ahem, I’m talking to you, spiralizer.) The julienne peeler creates long, thin strips and is close to the size, and price, of a regular vegetable peeler. Like the Microplane grater (and anything sharp), I suggest you keep this out of the dishwasher.
7.) Silicon Muffin Cups – These are such great space-savers for small kitchens, and they are truly non-stick. Anything I’ve ever baked in them just pops right out. Just toss them in the dishwasher when you’re done. Mama likes!
8.) Heatproof Silicon Spatulas – You can never have too many of these versatile spatulas. I use them for cooking, stirring, and getting every last drop of food out of the bowl. Just make sure they are heat-proof silicon and not plain old rubber. Nothing ruins your night like melted plastic in the kids pasta.
9.) Mixing Bowls – One of my most used wedding gifts is a set of colorful, dishwasher-safe, plastic mixing bowls. Mixing bowls are simple, but always useful. Choose metal bowls for the serious cook, colorful plastic for kids in the kitchen, and double-duty ceramic for moms who like to entertain.
10.) A Cast-Iron Skillet – Cast-iron is beloved classic cookware for a reason. It’s durable, cooks evenly, and is one of the most affordable ways to buy quality pans. Plus, you can go from stove-top to oven, which means less dishes to wash at the end of the night. What mom doesn’t want THAT for Christmas?
Merry Christmas, Charleston Moms! I hope you all get gifts that are essential, beautiful, fun and inspiring! #NoJunkPlease