The 11 Kitchen Things That Made 2017 the Easiest Cooking Year Ever

We are constantly in the kitchen here at Wide Open Eats, which means we are always putting both old and new kitchen things to the test. Behind every home cook, no matter how confident or patient, is a good set of kitchen items that never let them down, especially when the pasta sauce starts splattering. This year, we picked up some new tools that made our time in the kitchen much easier. We also came back, time and time again, to our old standbys.

Here are the 11 kitchen items we swore by in 2017, and will keep using well into the new year. Until something better comes along, that is.

11. The Pizzeria Pronto Stovetop Pizza Oven

We said goodbye to frozen pizza forever in 2017 because with this stovetop pizza oven, whipping up a fresh pie at home got that much easier.

10. Pyrex 3-Piece Glass Measuring Cup Set

How did we ever go with just one Pyrex measuring cup that only held 2 cups? This set gave us the room to grow, and the 1-quart measuring cup is indispensable for holiday baking.

9. OXO Good Grips 3-Blade Spiralizer

The year of zoodles, coodles, and even onoodles (spiralized onions for frying shoestring style, y'all), we couldn't have made it through without a trusty spiralizer. This OXO version stayed put on the counter, no matter how tough the vegetable.

8. The Imarku Pro Kitchen 8-Inch Chef's Knife

A good chef's knife is worth its weight in gold. A longtime classic, we've been using this knife for over two years and with a good sharpening every so often, it has never let us down.

7. Lodge 6-Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

A quality Dutch oven isn't hard to find, but a reasonably priced one certainly is. We swear by the 6-quart Lodge Dutch oven, available in gorgeous colors and finishes, for everything from frying chicken to soup.

6. Bee's Wrap Sustainable Reusable Food Storage

We first ordered these in March, and then promptly ordered another set of three in April, and another in June. Sustainability is at the top of our priority list when it comes to cooking, and these reusable beeswax wraps put Ziploc to shame.

5. Braun Multiquick Hand Blender

2017 was the year we said goodbye forever to our bulky blender and traded it in for this handheld immersion blender. Not only did it save us storage space on the counter, but it also made even creamier soups and milkshakes than the blender ever did.

4. MAIRICO Ultra Sharp Kitchen Shears

Just toss your cheap plastic kitchen shears now and never look back. Not only have these shears kept on kicking month and month in the test kitchen, but they run smoothly through our knife sharpener so they stay sharp.

3. Cast Iron Chain Mail Scrubber

Cleaning your cast iron can be a headache, and not many folks feel confident that they wouldn't mess up their precious seasoning when the going gets tough and stuck. This chainmail scrubber is a serious kitchen lifesaver and is the only scrubber that pulls up stuck food bits, especially caramelized onions that didn't make it.

2. Lodge 5-Quart Deep Cast Iron Skillet

This year, we started using our cast irons in a more functional way. The first step in doing that was getting this deep skillet that gave us the freedom to bake everything from cobblers to cinnamon rolls.

We even used it exclusively when frying up pickle mozzarella sticks and fried chicken. The results were, of course, delicious.

1. Banneton Proofing Basket Set with Bowl Scraper and Cloth Liner

We tackled bread this year, and after months of research, this Banneton proofing basket set appeared in the test kitchen. Our sourdough has never looked better, and if you're a bread baker in any capacity, this bowl designed for proofing is perfection.

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