The truth about stocking your home with the best kitchen tools is that you don't need to spend a lot of money to do it. Quality doesn't always equal expensive, and a ton of the Epi team's ride-or-die products—the one's we consider to be essentials for any home cook—cost less than $10 apiece. Scroll down for 10 of our inexpensive faves, many of which won our annual product reviews.
Our product review-winning paring knife and vegetable peeler are both from Kuhn Rikon—and both will set you back only $8. The knife is lightweight and comfortable to grip, which makes it easy to do detailed tasks like hull strawberries or cut hard cheese. The peeler is far and away the best tool for peeling everything from apples to butternut squash; don't let its simplicity fool you, it's a super sharp workhorse. When the blades in either tool go dull (bound to happen eventually with repeated use), the low price means it's no problem to replace them.
On the wire
You definitely need a whisk, so why not get the best one? This balloon whisk is well-balanced and comfortable to use—no hand cramps mid-way through making salad dressing. Additionally, this inexpensive strainer from Winco is a favorite for its many culinary applications, like rinsing berries, draining beans, sifting powdered sugar over tiramisu, and even poaching eggs. We keep it in an easy-to-access spot in our kitchen for near-daily use.
For good measure
Team Epi agrees: The OXO angled measuring cup is the best in the business for easy liquid measuring, thanks to the clear markings and slanted edge on the inside that make “eyeballing” a thing of the past. We love it in mini as well, for amounts under ¼ cup (it's in heavy rotation in our homes for oil, vinegar, and even booze for cocktails). Also, our product test-winning measuring spoons in the budget category are no-brainer purchase at just $2: they're easy to hold and connect with a simple wire keyring-like loop, so you're less likely to lose spoons or scatter the set.
$5.00, Bed Bath & Beyond
$2.00, Restaurant Supply.com
These are the best kitchen tools that do something your own two hands could not, like open a bottle of wine or move delicate cookies to a cooling rack. The True Twister corkscrew, in addition to having hundreds of five-star reviews on Amazon, won our product test in the budget category; the chrome twist handle is smooth, weighty, well-balanced, and easy to grip. Mini spatulas make quick work of a ton of seemingly impossible tasks, like scraping out the last of peanut butter jar or the bottom of your blender. And once you have a fish spatula, you'll be shocked how often you reach for it—even when you aren't making fish.
Originally Appeared on Epicurious