Don’t get it twisted: We love our voluptuous KitchenAid stand mixer and do-it-all Always Pan. But this spring, we’re in the market for some dope, under-the-radar small appliances to take our kitchen game to the next level. There’s nothing more that boosts our serotonin levels than a cooking gadget that doesn’t hog all our countertop space, especially if they make our lives easier. It seems like there’s one for almost every cooking need, whether it’s a practical rice cooker, or a (probably unnecessary hot dog roller, it’s out there in cyberspace. We’re more than happy to fill our cupboards with all the cooking gadgets we need to wow our dinner guests, streamline our mornings, and make our lives easier—especially as the weather gets warmer and the prospect of standing over a hot stove sounds less and less appealing. That’s why we’re taking a deep breath, putting aside our hefty, but lovely, large kitchen appliances and bringing you the best small kitchen appliances that will turn your cluttered counter into a tranquil cooking sanctuary.
We’re talking about single-serve waffle-makers for channeling your inner Leslie Knope, conical burr coffee grinders for nailing your next cup of joe, and more awesome, often-overlooked appliances that remind us what a treat it is to live in the modern culinary world. So clean your stove, put your dishes away, and make some room for your next serotonin-boosting impulse purchase.
A beginner blender
Does anyone really enjoy washing a colossal blender? Not us. The Nutribullet is the perfect, compact option for lazy folks that just want to sit back, relax, and enjoy their kale smoothies. With its 600-watt motor and blade, it blends all your ingredients with just a simple push—plus, it has utility far beyond protein shakes and smoothies. We’re talking sauces, sofritos, salsas, soups, and more.
An eggcellent choice
Besides copious amounts of caffeine, nothing wakes us up in the morning like some good ol’ eggs. How do you like them? Poached? Scrambled? Hard-boiled? The best-selling Dash Egg Cooker can cook them five different ways and hold up to six eggs at a time. We’ll take them poached please, because we’re ~fancy~. This thing is so popular (and beloved by users) that it has a whopping 98,000 reviews on Amazon, with an aggregated 4.5 star rating.
Because we hate exerting energy
We love a good cooking session, but sometimes, putting in the work just isn’t the vibe. That’s where the Instant Pot comes in. Everyone and their grandmother seems to have an Instant Pot, and we can’t blame them. It’s a cult-favorite and a kitchen staple with endless cooking possibilities. The mini model is a space-saving kitchen workhorse with features such as rice cooking, slow-cooking, yogurt-making, steaming, and sautéing. Just pop in ingredients to cook for hours and be on your merry way. (Also, bring us some of that homemade yogurt.)
Eggo waffles (for adults)
Eggo waffles are the epitome of a
nutritious nostalgic breakfast, but it’s time to upgrade to mini, thicc waffles. The Dash Mini Waffle Maker has a four-inch, non-stick cooking surface and delivers top-tier results, per its 4.7-star average rating from over 200,000 reviews. There’s even a model that will imprint a pineapple on your waffle if you want to get in touch with your tropical side. It’s also a TikTok star that went viral for its cooking abilities outside of the waffle zone, such as quesadillas—which we could really use right now.
Grind, build, link
If you haven’t been on the workout grind (we get it), you can always do the next best thing, which is get on the coffee grind. Hop on the artisanal coffee train with the Breville Smart Grinder Pro, which uses conical burrs to convert beans into ground coffee in a flash—key for a consistent grind and coffee flow rate during the brewing process. (Caffeine connoisseurs will approve.)
Michael Scott’s worst nightmare
He is hurt! We’d love to shake George Foreman’s hand and cordially thank him for his service of providing the world with this grill. Screw firing up the big poppa grill on the patio—this sucker fits five burgers at a time, more than enough to satiate the late-night meat cravings we all have. (We all have those… right?) Cook time should only take about 10 minutes before you can dig your teeth into the grilled perfection.
Not today, grease
Greasy, fried delights on a hot spring day makes us want to bust a move, but not when a cramp hits. Air-fried comfort food, on the other hand, gives you all the fun without the stomach pain (hopefully). The Chefman Compact Air Fryer has just enough room to fit a double fistful of onion rings or buffalo cauliflower so your taste buds can continue to dance, oil-free. You can also fry, reheat, or cook frozen food easily with the integrated 60-minute timer.
Now, let’s put some Ina Garten on the TV and get cookin’.
The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals? Sign up for our newsletter.