What kitchen appliances do you neeeeed?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

photo Fridge Art by Flickr user Brian AuerI just ran across one of those posts on No Impact Man that shakes up what I consider to be essential appliances in the kitchen.

Their household has adjusted to not using a freezer in their kitchen! Having the refrigerator component separate from the freezer part makes that shift a bit easier I imagine… but still!

Other kitchen appliances their household eliminated: food processor, electric rice cooker, and unintentionally the electric dishwasher.

I admit, this appeals to the living-with-out-stuff ascetic monk in me (he’s tiny… my shiny crow impulses keep him battered down).

Could you consider not having a freezer? How about one as a seasonal appliance?


posted May 15th, 2008 at 6:30 am

I would loathe to be without a freezer. It may be ok if you mainly eat out, or if you shop every day, but I sometimes go up to three weeks between supermaket visits so it would be a disaster.
However I would like help on how to empty it!!

The most useless appliance I have recently purchased was a George Foreman grill for healthy fat free eating.
Fat free is right and dry and tasteless is also quite correct. I doubt I will try it again, so it was a glorious waste of money.

Ha! You know what we did with our George Foreman grill- let it on our friends’ doorstep. :)
I believe they are figuring out how to get rid of it now too!

– McAuliflower

- Jane
posted May 15th, 2008 at 6:36 am

I think I could since mine is mostly used for freezing jam because I’m too lazy to can.

It would be a pain to live without ice, though. I use it often for ice baths, and cocktails, of course!

- Katez0r
posted May 15th, 2008 at 6:58 am

No freezer? No way.

Mine is full of chicken carcasses and stock, bread (we don’t eat it fast enough before it would mold), cheese rinds and egg whites. Now how would I not waste this food without my freezer?

I require fridge, freezer, range, oven and that’s it. Okay I also like the microwave and the toaster oven.

I need my blender too.

I just heard of an interesting way to store cheese rinds- in vinegar, unrefrigerated. Haven’t tried it yet.
I know of a great way to store egg whites though- in cookies. Ok, maybe not the best way…

recipe for chocolate meringue cookies
recipe for pecan meringue cookies


posted May 15th, 2008 at 7:46 am

Interesting! Until we remodeled our 1911 house last year, our kitchen was odd and awkward. No dishwasher, and no room for the KitchenAid Mixer we received 2 years ago when we got married. Food processor was a pain to get out and use, so we didn’t. Now? I can’t imagine not having that KitchenAid. I use it for everything. As for the freezer….that would mean no berries picked last summer and frozen to eat all winter! Or ice! I applaud those who re evaluate their lives and how they live, and their impact on the world, but I think my freezer helps us both eat better and more local.

Our old house (a 1913 rental) has the same kitchen issues- no room for the refrigerator. And little drawer space or cabinets. However, the pantry space is glorious! It’s spoiling me.


- Lelo
posted May 15th, 2008 at 2:05 pm

Interesting question and several versions of answers coming your way.

I do not need a standing blender, it does me no good. But I LOVE my immersion blender. I don’t need a rice cooker, potato peeler, pizza cutter, toaster, microwave, dishwasher or potato ricer.

I do need a freezer, stand mixer, food processor and food thermometer.

- Karol
posted May 15th, 2008 at 8:55 pm

Very interesting article! I could not do without a freezer. We’d end up throwing so much away…or maybe we would be more cautious with purchases? Who knows. I certainly couldn’t live without my Kitchen Aid mixer and funny enough, our Magic Bullet for smoothies!

- sharon
posted May 15th, 2008 at 10:36 pm

I’m a pastry cook.
There’s NO WAY I could live without a freezer, as I often make desserts at home which i have no intention of eating/serving any time soon.
My girlfriend and I bought a 7qt. chest freezer a few months ago!!

I also have a fair number of unnecessary kitchen appliances…
- pasta machine (which i use once every 3 months or so).
- 2qt. ice cream machine (a little more useful than the pasta machine considering my profession, but still a bit excessive.)
- combination blender/food processor which i rarely use (but would if i had more counter space and didn’t have to dig it out of the cupboards every time).

My most used appliance is definitely my kitchen-aid mixer. Best kitchen purchase I ever made.

- Buck
posted May 16th, 2008 at 5:00 am

I am interested in the food culture of your country. And I support your site. If there is time, please come in my site. From Japan

posted May 16th, 2008 at 10:50 am

I can’t imagine life without a freezer. We have all sorts of meat, bread, veggies, desserts, fresh ginger, tomato paste, liquor :) I want a larger freezer!! Perhaps if I didn’t have to work, and I could purchase food fresh every day, then I could pull it off.

- Becky
posted May 18th, 2008 at 4:25 am

I do without a dishwasher…..just me mostly and if guests then we can gossip over dishes. Or we con the guys into doing it. I need my toaster, stab blender as in Bamix, microwave (to melt chocolate and make white sauce) like to have the food processor for slicing up vegetables easily or making quick pastry, cheesecake etc. Need Kenwood mixer…egg whites, sponges. Small hand mixer for creaming (23 secs in microwave is good there also). I do not need my potato ricer but I love it. Manage without a rice cooker. Hate things on benches so have two appliance cupboards. Bamix Toaster and Kenwood in one and Food processor and blender that goes on top of it in another (have never used that blender)Oh and need electric jug. Use glass jug and filter cone/papers for coffee. Sick of the coffee machines till I can afford a really good one and then not sure I want to spare the bench space. Love clean empty benches when not cooking. Getting a self defrosting freezer was my best ever investment. Especially as bending became more difficult.

- Jane
posted May 20th, 2008 at 5:58 pm

We are horrible about limiting the number of appliances we own. In fact we own just about one of everything- blender, kitchenaid, countertop grill, food processor, toaster over, microwave, dishwasher.

We could live without these things but since we try to make everything from scratch and have eliminated convenience foods and prepackaged meals from our diet they make things easier. We have a bunch of the kitchenaid attachments so that we can slice veggies, make ice cream, grind meat, and stuff sausage.

We use our freezer to stock up since we buy in bulk as much as possible like many other people.

The blender I could do without but J. is attached. The toaster oven I love and I think it saves money buy heating stuff up without having to use the oven. I think if anything I would give up the microwave instead, the only thing we really use it for is defrosting meat.

posted May 27th, 2008 at 10:46 am

I used to live with one of those tiny European fridges, about 8 square feet. The freezer was one of those ice-boxes within the fridge and it was one of those Incredible Shrinking Freezer Boxes– once the unit was plugged in, the freezer needed to be defrosted about once every six weeks. And that couldn’t be done without unplugging the fridge for several days. Needless to say, I stopped using the freezer.

It took some adjustment but I actually got used to it and took perverse pride in it. I had to shop more frequently and buy less. I had to go out for ice cream (or eat the whole pint– not smart.)

- Natty
posted May 30th, 2008 at 1:58 am

This reminds me of the Seinfeld episode in which Kramer gives up his fridge/freezer and vows to only eat fresh food. Not sure I could do that myself, what with my dairy habit… As for my favorite appliance: Give me my immersion blender or give me death!

- Tommy
posted June 6th, 2008 at 11:55 am

I love my deep freeze and don’t think I’d want to live without it. I could make do with a smaller freezer and I’d like one that’s more energy efficient.

I recently purchased a “Kill A Watt” plug in watt meter at Amazon for $20.55 and have been finding out which appliances are energy vampires sucking down watts when not in use. I’ve unplugged a bunch of them and I’m curious to see if the 150 watts of load I’ve unplugged so far show up as much of a drop on my monthly bill.

I’ve been curious about that too- I think I’ll have to go pick up a Kill A Watt. We’ve been using our breaker box to regulate our washer and dryer when not in use. The tv/dvd gets a power strip to be flicked off when not in use. We have fun with how low we can go.


- StMaximo
posted June 12th, 2008 at 4:52 pm

Oh no way! No, no, no. I do a lot of freezer cooking and that would just not work for me.

I am too reliant on my freezer, I’d be lost. Plus, how would I possibly store those awesome fudgicles you gave us the recipe for ;)


- Nicole
posted October 9th, 2012 at 2:59 am

Kitchen without freezer is hard to imagine….does anyone has so much time to shop vegetables everyday?….I think no. I can’t manage my day to day life without a freezer.

Leave a comment