Any sustainable DIY fanatic knows the importance of having great kitchen tools.
The right tools are an investment in your DIY infrastructure. They help you create a healthy family environment by making your DIY projects come to life and helping you preserve them for use all the year round.
Note: This arsenal of sustainable DIY kitchen tools is being continually updated as we adopt, use, and trust new tools and brands.
In my current (small) kitchen, I try to keep big, bulky kitchen appliances to a minimum so we don’t have avalanches every time we open a cupboard or the small pantry closet. We survive with just a few appliances, and it’s pretty remarkable considering the many DIY projects we routinely undertake.
We just don’t see the sense in storing and maintaining a host of small appliances, especially when we can do everything with just a few favorites.
My favorite small kitchen appliances
Hands down, the VitaMix high speed blender is our favorite kitchen appliance! Although very expensive, this kitchen work horse eliminates the need for some other space-consuming appliances. It has replaced our bulky ice cream maker and wimpy blender, and has almost totally replaced our food processor. We regularly use it to make sauces, nut butters, ice cream, smoothies, salsa, and much more. I have also used it for grinding spices and making moisturizer (after which I have to clean it extremely well).
We were fortunate enough to find someone selling their VitaMix for half the price a brand new one costs! I can’t imagine my kitchen without this gem.
Owning a pressure canner (that can also be used for the hot water bath method) is wonderful for it’s obvious use…canning the bounty of food from the growing season so we have a pantry stocked with healthy, delicious food all year long. Some of our favorites include refrigerator clean-out soups, diced tomatoes, applesauce, broth, salsa, and beans. I was nervous about pressure canning, having heard horror stories about explosions and food stuck on ceilings for months, but we purchased a heavy duty model that has been a cinch to use.
Although I have recently started making artisan loaves based on the book Healthy Bread in Five Minutes A Day, I must admit my breadmaker was one of my absolute favorite appliances for several years. It baked large, soft, healthy loaves for us that guests would actually request when coming to visit. It allowed me to throw ingredients in a pan and let the machine do ALL the work. No mess, no kneading, no waiting for rise times, and no problem popping the loaf out of the pan. When the fun of baking artisan bread dies off, I’m sure I”ll reunite with my trusty breadmaker for a little DIY bread rendezvous.
I must admit that when I had excess kitchen space, I owned an immersion blender (stick blender) for probably four years without using it once. It was a visit to a friend’s house, who was making homemade soap with her (dedicated) immersion blender, that reminded me I had one resting in the dark corners of my cupboards. I now use this peppy little blender for anything requiring a little stirring when I’m feeling too lazy to get out the VitaMix. I also discovered it’s easier to clean than the VitaMix after making moisturizer. This appliance takes up very little space and can help out with many food products that need a quick blend.
Other useful appliances
If you don’t have a high speed blender (like a VitaMix), a food processor is a necessary kitchen appliance. It blends, chops, dices, purees, and creams ingredients. Although ours doesn’t make it out of the cupboard much anymore, we still love it for making salsa and other things we prefer chunky. (The VitaMix pulverizes things.) It saves loads of time for the home chef, but can also be used to make powdered laundry detergent, lotions, and a million other DIY projects.
Although I haven’t tried it, I love the idea of homemade Crock Pot soaps. Using the Crock Pot cuts down on dishes and supplies you need for this messy DIY project. We currently use ours to soak and cook our dry beans, make roasts, stews, hot drinks, etc. If you’ve ever owned or perused a Crock Pot cookbook, you know there are a number of kitchen projects that are made easy with this wonder-cooker. From breads and cakes to scrambles and tasty oatmeals… the Crock Pot is a mainstay in our kitchen.
Remember: This arsenal of sustainable DIY kitchen tools is being continually updated as we adopt, use, and trust new tools and brands.
Your DIY Infrastructure
We recommend researching small kitchen appliances, saving for solid models that last a lifetime, and using each tool for multiple purposes.
As Matt always says, you should consider quality appliances “an investment in your DIY infrastructure.”
Looking for a special tool or kitchen appliance for your DIY projects?