14 Products That Are Made for Small Kitchens
Make the most out of limited counterspace with small kitchen appliances!
By Taylor Murray for Food Network Kitchen
Sometimes, bigger is not always better, and if you have a small kitchen, you know how painfully true that can be. In small cooking spaces, efficiency and compact design are the most important factors when choosing cookware. When space is tight, the last thing you need is a behemoth of an appliance that can only perform one task. Luckily, many people the world over have small kitchens and big culinary dreams so there are tons of products on the market perfect for utilizing every square inch. Read on to see a few gadgets that are ultra-small or ultra-efficient (or both!).
One of the best-selling pans on the market recently is the Our Place pan — and for good reason! It’s a social media darling and has sold out more than 10 times. For us, the best part of this pan is the functional design that can replace eight cookware items. This pan is a steamer, strainer, saucepan, saucepan, skillet, fry pan and nonstick pan all in one. It comes with a wooden spoon with a built-in spoon rest, and all the parts stack and store together. With the add-on steamer basket, you can actually cook a three-course meal all at the same time in just this one pan. Talk about space-saving!
The tiny Cuisinart Mini-Prep packs a punch for its tiny size. While the three-cup bowl size isn’t great for chopping up huge projects, this compact unit has more than enough space to make a small batch of hummus, pesto or salsa, chop nuts or herbs or even mince onions and garlic with no tears. Like most Cuisinart projects, it comes in a few color options, so if you do have to store it out on the counter, at least you can still color-coordinate your kitchen.
The Dash Mini Air Fryer can do anything that air fryers two-to-three times its size can do, just in a compact size that’s easy to clean and store. Just like other air fryers, the Dash mini fries up crispy food without any added fat. Using convection technology, the Dash Mini Air Fryer uses its 1.6-quart dry basket to quickly crisp up just enough for one or two people. The outside of the fryer stays cool during cooking in case you don’t have much wiggle room. Like most Dash products, it comes in a variety of colors so you don't have to sacrifice style for efficiency.
The Dash Mini Toaster Oven is perfect for one person — it comes in a soft yellow with great design, so if you have the counter space you’ll be happy to display it. While larger toaster ovens can cook whole chickens, this toaster oven is perfect for the single person with a need to quickly heat up a small item.
Another great mini appliance from the Dash brand is the mini rice cooker. It makes two cups of perfect, fluffy rice in less than 30 minutes without any effort at all. It just needs to be set to 'cook', and it will automatically switch to a warming mode when rice is perfectly steamed. Other than rice, the rice cooker can cook grits and other grains, boil vegetables and even simmer small batches of soups.
This little board can withstand a round in the dishwasher, is durable enough to work as trivet and, if it can be stained, we haven’t found the material powerful enough to do it. Even the smallest kitchens have room for this little board’s slim footprint. Did we mention it’s only $4.99?
The tiny profile on the Nespresso Essenza is one of the smallest on the market. For a coffee machine that brews your beverage completely hands-free, it’s surprising that the Essenza can crank out a very decent cup with just a 3-inch wide footprint on your counter. This machine uses the same tech as the bigger Nespresso models but is still capable of delivering the same quality of espresso. It comes with a built-in water tank that can hold up to 20 ounces of water (big enough for four-to-five lungos) and just two simple buttons to operate.
More French press than coffee machine, this tiny yet stylish coffee pot uses filter technology to brew a great cup of coffee in a pot scarcely bigger than the mug you’ll drink it out of. The pot uses an innovative SoftBrew device that infuses the water with the ground coffee through a razor-thin, stainless-steel mesh filter that drops into the center. There are two sizes with two colors each, meaning it pulls double duty as a useful tool and as a beautiful piece of decor in your kitchen.
A vast majority of the kitchen-prep tasks you would need a whisk to achieve can be completed with the tiny-yet-mighty mini whisk from Williams Sonoma. Scrambled eggs, salad dressing, pan sauces and even a small bowl of cream can all be whipped into submission without crowding your tool drawer.
It’s no secret that we’re big fans of the Nutribullet. What’s not to like? The bowl of the blender doubles as a vessel to hold large and small soups and purees alike. The 32-ounce-sized bowl is big enough for most any kitchen project, and most models come with lids for storing or drinking on-the-go (think smoothies and frozen coffees). It’s big enough to blend soups fast and powerful enough to crush ice for frozen drinks. With a base that takes up just six square inches (depending on model) of countertop, this is a must for any tiny kitchen.
Smeg is known for their beautiful yet functional appliances and kitchen products, and their immersion blender is no different. The immersion blenders powerful motor can make quick work of soups and sauces. The add-on attachments turn the blender into a combination electric mixer, whisker and food processor. The best way to save space in any kitchen is to invest in multi-use products that can eliminate the need for another thing in your drawer or cabinet and this blender is one of the best on the market.
The all-in-one magic of the Instant Pot has taken the world by storm, and with the three-quart model, even the smallest kitchens have room. This powerful machine has so many functions it can take the place of several other single-use appliances. If you’re unfamiliar with the Instant Pot product, this wonder machine can cook dry beans in less than an hour, hasten all-day stews to just minutes and even hard boil eggs perfectly every time. The Instant Pot can cook fully frozen pre-prepped meals in less than an hour completely hands-free. What more do you need to know?
It’s almost a rite of passage to own one of Le Creuset’s classic Dutch ovens. And, if you’re only cooking for one or two people, the 2-quart model is just big enough for small batches of soups and braises and the compact size can fit most anywhere. Le Creuset’s Dutch ovens come with a life-time warranty, so you will still have this long after you’ve possibly moved on to bigger and better kitchen spaces. Even then, there are still plenty of smaller recipes that are just perfect for this small but useful pot.
If your tiny kitchen doesn’t come built with a dishwasher, you’re probably sick of hand washing everything. If that’s the case (or maybe you just want to sterilize a few things), this countertop dishwasher could be just what you need. With a 5-liter, built-in water tank, there’s no hook-up needed to quickly wash and sanitize enough dishes for one or two people. It even has a fruit and vegetable wash cycle!