5 Kitchen Tools You Should Never Spend a Lot of Money On

Stop splurging on nonstick pans for good.

Price and stock could change after publish date, and we may make money off these affiliate links. Learn more.
September 16, 2021

Related To:

Some pieces of cookware like a chef's knife, stainless steel pan or blender are definitely worth the splurge. But testing more than 1,000 kitchen tools and appliances has taught our team that expensive doesn't always mean better. No matter the price point, some gadgets will need to be replaced more frequently due to natural wear and tear, and therefore aren't worth the higher cost. Other times, the less-expensive version is simply just as good as one that is significantly more expensive. Thanks to thorough testing and some advice from our test kitchen pros, we've rounded up the five products that you should never spend a ton of money on.

$14.48

Even the most inexpensive peelers, including this set of three which breaks down to about $5 each, work just as well as their more expensive counterparts. In testing, all of the top-performing peelers cost less than $15 each, meaning you'll get a great peeler that you won't mind replacing once it inevitably gets dull.

Buy It
$45 $32
28% Off

This might come as a surprise, but most nonstick pans aren't worth spending a lot of money on — especially if you use them on a regular basis. In general, nonstick pans are not designed to last a lifetime, especially if used over high heat or washed in the dishwasher. This Tramontina pan is our favorite budget pick and has a sturdy construction, is PFOA-free and is both dishwasher- and oven-safe. (Our tester says it reminded her of the nonstick pans from her restaurant kitchen days. ) Some other pots and pans are worth the splurge, including Dutch ovens and stainless steel cookware.

Buy It
$17.99

Not to be confused with enameled cast iron like Dutch ovens, a classic cast-iron skillet is relatively inexpensive and usually gets better with time. Even at less than $20 per pan, most cast-iron skillets come pre-seasoned and (with proper care) can last a lifetime. This Victoria skillet was our top-tested pick, and the ever-popular Lodge skillet is also an affordable and high-performing option.

Buy It
$14.98

Having a few plastic cutting boards on-hand is essential for prepping raw meat, since they can be easily disinfected. It's always a good idea to opt for an inexpensive option, since these can easily warp in the dishwasher or stain when used with foods like beets.

Buy It
$19.29

Some electric kettles offer a more aesthetically pleasing design or extra features including picking your precise temperature or keeping your water warm. While those are great additions, they are not worth the splurge if you're simply looking to boil water. This top-rated kettle from Amazon quickly brings water to boil and takes up minimal space on your counter.

Buy It

Related Links:

Next Up

Where to Buy the Pioneer Woman's Instant Pot Online

Though many designs are sold out at Walmart, you can find refurbished models and other products online.

5 Inexpensive Kitchen Tools I Replace Every Year

Keep your kitchen in tiptop shape with a few new essentials.

15 Convincing Non-Alcoholic Wines You Should Try

There is a non-alcoholic wine for almost all of your favorite varieties!

4 Best KitchenAid Stand Mixers, Tested by Food Network Kitchen

We tested all the KitchenAid mixer lines to find the very best stand mixers.

The Popular Bedding Brand Parachute Just Launched a Tabletop Line

Elevate your kitchen with these stunning collections.

The Best Wedding Gifts Food Network Staffers Have Received

Sometimes the best gifts aren't on the registry.

12 Kitchen Gadgets and Tools Perfect for Kids Who Love to Cook

Because even the littlest sous chef needs the right equipment!

10 Kitchen Tools You Need to Be Considered an Adult

You finally have a real kitchen (see ya, hot pot and mini fridge). Now it's time to stock it. Here are the next-level essentials that will allow you to cook, eat and entertain in style.

5 Best Kitchen Soaps of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

Keep these soaps right by the kitchen sink!

What's New