Kitchen Appliances 101

Small kitchen appliances are ubiquitous in just about any home. From toasters to rice cookers to blenders, any home cook is sure to have a bevy of kitchen appliances in their kitchen. With so many different types available, it's important to buy the right kitchen appliance to meet your cooking needs, and finding the right combination is the key to equipping your kitchen with the best choices for your hard-earned money. After all, buying small kitchen appliances can be confusing and time consuming activity!

There are so many new kitchen appliances available today and lots of colors and brands to choose from. So where do you start? One way to go about it is to pick a brand name that you've had good luck with in the past, and then look for small kitchen appliances that carry the same brand name.

Popular brands you'll most likely find are Cuisinart, Proctor Silex and Hamilton Beach, with smaller brands like Deni and Kalorik being found in boutique stores and online retailers. Here's an overview of some popular kitchen appliance types available:


Blenders can be used to make smooth and delicious blended drinks such as smoothies or margaritas and can also be used to make salsa or soups in place of a food processor. The most common blenders have glass jars, but you'll also see hand blenders, immersion blenders and even single serve blenders available in stores.

Slow Cookers

Also known as the "crock pot," a slow cooker can be one of the best time savers in your kitchen. Consisting of a glazed ceramic container with a metal shell and a heating element inside, slow cookers cook food on low heat but are designed for you to "set it and forget it." Fill up your slow cooker before you go to work, set it on low and come home to delicious, one-pot meals with the touch of a button!

Toaster Ovens

Over the years toaster ovens have found a permanent place in the kitchen because of their versatility and efficiency. Whether you need one to quickly toast slices of bread or bake a small batch of cookies, this versatile appliance can do it well. Moreover, they take less time to prepare meals and consume less energy than using a conventional oven.

Deep Fryers

Deep fryers are becoming increasingly popular because they offer a faster and safer way to fry foods. Instead of working with hot oil and a smoking pan, you simply pour oil into the deep fryer, set the heat and place your food into a basket. In minutes, you can have delicious French fries, fried chicken or donuts with professional results!

Ice Cream Makers

While many people may think that an ice cream maker is just another one of those kitchen appliances that will simply collect dust on their counters, this appliance offers a world of possibilities for the ice cream lover. In addition to being able to make ice cream with superior ingredients, ice cream makers also allow you to create low-fat or low-sugar alternatives.