I’ve moved eight times since graduating college (…twelve years ago 😳), which means I’ve packed and unpacked my kitchen eight more times than I’ve ever wanted to. But the good thing about moving is that you realize what you don’t actually need or use in the process.
Here are ten kitchen items that I owned at one point in my life, but no longer do. And neither I or my (tiny) NYC kitchen miss them.
Let’s start with the most controversial: the microwave. I’ll start by saying that if it 100% makes your life easier, keep it… but first, hear me out. Until two years ago I rolled my eyes anyone told me to ditch the microwave because I used it every.single.day. To reheat leftovers, boil tea, make oatmeal, you name it. But then our microwave broke and I was forced to (gasp!) reheat leftovers in a skillet or the oven, boil water in a kettle, and make oatmeal on the stovetop.
And guess what? All of those methods made my food taste better and – the real shocker – none of them took any more time than the microwave did. Plus, we have a lot more counter space now.
Another hot topic. Again, if you use a toaster every day, keep it. But I rarely make toast, and when I do I simply use this easy broiler method. Another huge counter space saver #forthewin.
I had a juicer for a couple of years but cleaning it was the bane of my existence so I stopped using it (yet kept it because… someday?). But when I discovered that you can actually juice without a juicer (!) by using a high-speed blender and a nut milk bag, I donated my juicer the next day. When I really want fresh juice, I use this method and it couldn’t be easier.
Oh man. Mugs. They’re like the t-shirts of the kitchen. Brands hand them out like candy, some are sentimental, most are just ugly. My advice: ditch as many as you can. As a rule of thumb, you’ll never need more than eight mugs (or plates, or bowls, etc.) at one time so keep your favorites and say goodbye to the rest.
Excess Pots & Pans
How many pans do you actually cook with? For me, it’s just three (this set of cast-iron ones). For pots, I have a saucepan and a stockpot and that’s it. Don’t underestimate the happiness that comes from having pots and pans that fit easily in one cabinet, cleanly out of sight.
Lots of Knives
True story: I only use one knife regularly. It’s an all-purpose chef’s knife. The only other knives I own are a serrated one (for the few times I need to slice a loaf of bread) and a cheese knife. No need for a huge knife block or special drawer means even more counter space.
Single-use appliances usually take up WAY more space than they deserve. If you can count on one hand the number of times you’ve used your [INSERT ODD APPLIANCE HERE] in the past year, I’d say goodbye to it. Usual culprits: bread machines, rice cookers, ice cream makers, sandwich presses, pasta makers, George Foremans, electric carving knives, and deep fryers.
Unless you use your slow cooker a lot – in which case, keep it! – this is another space-stealer. You can actually slow cook in the oven (see this post for details). Or if you’re like me and use your slow cooker a lot – or don’t have one but want one – I would 100% opt for an Instant Pot instead because it slow cooks and SO. MUCH. MORE.
These are so pretty, I know. And I used to want one (…because every nice kitchen has one, right?). But I don’t really bake. So no Kitchen-Aid for me. Before buying one – or adding it to your wedding registry – figure out if you’d ever actually use it. Otherwise, you’re going to be acquiring a very heavy (very expensive) dust collector.
This is an easy one: use it or lose it. Or display it, if you (really) like the way it looks. Because your kids probably won’t want to inherit it any more than you did ;).
What Did I Miss? Are There Any Kitchen Items You’ve Realized You Can Live Without? Let Me Know in the Comments Below!
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