Kitchen Registry Basics

Everything you need to know about registering for cookware, appliances, gadgets and gizmos for a thoroughly efficient and enviably stylish kitchen.


Gadgets Galore

Before you get cooking, outfit your kitchen with the following basics that are sure to make your life easier.

Bagel grip: This plastic device holds your bagel securely and keeps the knife blade from coming into contact with your fingers.

Bottle opener: It doesn’t get more essential than this—stainless steel models will crack open a Corona every time.

Can opener: Whether manual or electric (it’s all a matter of preference), make sure you have one on hand.

Cheese grater: Look for the kind that fits like a lid on top of a bowl or container, so cheese can be caught neatly.

Colander: Get the largest size you can find for draining pasta and salad greens—and a smaller one for rinsing veggies.

Corn holders: Keep fingers clean and burn-free with these little lifesavers that pierce each end of the cob.

Corkscrew: The best kind preserves the cork for re-stopping by prying it up from its sides instead of twisting it out.

Cutting board: Whether wood or plastic, you should have two: one for meat, and one for everything else (because bacteria spreads, it’s not safe to cut meats and poultry on the same surface as items that won’t be cooked).

Garlic press: It’s easy to use and will keep your hands from smelling like garlic. The newest versions allow you to pop in a whole, unpeeled clove—the press does all the work!

Ice-cream scoop: Dig into that sorbet with a sturdy, easy-release metal scooper.

Kitchen scale: Measure ingredients precisely for recipes, or to keep track of portions if you’re watching your weight (shown, below).

Kitchen tongs: A must for turning chicken and hamburgers on the grill or for picking up hot potatoes.

Measuring cups and spoons: Get a set of spoons on a ring, dry measuring cups that nest, and liquid measuring pitchers made of Pyrex that can go from fridge to microwave.

Multi-purpose scraper: A metal tool perfect for scooping up bits of dough or chopped herbs from your work surface.

Pepper/spice mill: Add fresh ground pepper and other spices to recipes with a twist of your own mill. See-through models make it simple to know when to refill.

Pizza cutter: A sharp, stainless steel cutting wheel will have you slicing through your favorite pie in no time.

Rubber lid opener: This handy device helps twist open stubborn jars and bottles without straining your wrists.

Salad spinner: Chefs recommend drying salad greens thoroughly to keep them crisp. A colander rotates inside a large bowl to dry your greens quickly and efficiently.

Seafood crackers: Make certain the ones you choose have sturdy steel construction and non-slip handles. Some even come with different shelling surfaces for opening smaller items, such as nuts.

Spaghetti server: Perfect for pasta lovers: The prongs on this utensil catch those stringy noodles and make it a cinch to serve.

Tea kettle: Worldwide, consumption of tea is outranked only by water. If you like your cup of herbal mint—or hot cocoa—look for a kettle with a heat-resistant handle, durable construction and a spout that opens easily (or even automatically).

Vegetable peeler: This device makes peeling carrots and potatoes safe and strain-free.

Whisks: To whip up eggs for fluffy omelets, check out ones made of steel wire or nylon.