A black Berndes Z-whisk.

Zee whisk you never knew you needed

French. Ball. Flat. Balloon. Does the world—and your kitchen—really need another whisk option?! If it’s this cool Swedish designed Z number, the answer is yes! This funky looking whisk capably smooths sauces, emulsifies vinaigrettes, and creates obscenely creamy aioli. But the real beauty is in its compact design. It easily reaches even those elusive sides of a pan. And its nylon coating won’t wreck your nonstick in the process.

BuyBerndes Z Whisk, $17 on Riverbendhome.com

A stainless steel Joseph Joseph garlic rocker.

Rock on baby, rock on

We confress. We swoon to the design of this museum-worthy rocker garlic press. Not only that, it capably pops out perfect little nubbins of minced garlic—minus the lingering aroma of garlic on your fingertips that comes from painstakingly chopping it with a knife the old-fashioned way.

Buy Joseph Joseph Garlic Rocker Crusher Mincer Press, $15 on Amazon.com

A pair of Essentials kitchen scissors.

Five blades are better than one

We’ve all been there: Crowded cutting board, mid-dinner prep, and no space (or patience) for chopping herbs. Cue these Edward Scissorhands. Makes a cinch of snipping delicate herbs directly into a simmering sauce, a pizza hot out of the oven, or just as a final flourish on anything as it’s ready to head to the table.

Buy Essentials Kitchen Scissors, $17 on Riverbendhome.com

A white Matfer Bourgeat flexible bench scraper.

A scraper as flexible as your yoga teacher

This little flexible silicon bench scraper is, natch, superb at scraping bread dough out of round bowls. Or scraping pie crust dough into a heap. It’s also a maestro at scooping up minced herbs from the cutting board or coaxing that last bit of sauce from the pan onto your plate…which is far less obvious than licking the pan (though we won’t tell if you do).

Buy Matfer Bourgeat Flexible Bench Scraper, $12 on Amazon.com

A blue bowl and colander as part of the Ayesha Curry bowl set.

Strain. Stir. Stack. Repeat.

The age-old challenge. So many kitchen gadgets (treasures?) yet so little storage! This stylish nesting set of a multitasking bowl helps ease that endless push and pull. The mixing bowl itself doubles as a large format measuring cup. And it comes with a bonus colander that nestles neatly inside. All that function plus cool form earns its footprint on our shelf.

Buy Ayesha Curry Bowl Set, $15 on Riverbendhome.com

A blue Greater Good kitchen scale.

A kitchen scale worth the weight!

More home cooks than ever are using kitchen scales for baking. And this one shines because of a modest 6-inch flat surface as well as a large display (old eyes rejoice!) and the ability to switch quickly between grams, milliliters, ounces, and fluid ounces. Most importantly, parents can finally settle the question of whether one child actually did get a bigger dessert than another—once and for all proving that love can, indeed, be measured.

Buy GreaterGood Kitchen Scale, $16 on Amazon.com

An orange Rachael Ray peeling tool.

The Swiss Army knife of the kitchen

Not only does this 3-in-1 peeler make your dirty root vegetables squeaky clean, it can poke the eyes out of your potatoes and craft stunning curls of vegetables for coleslaw or shaved zucchini salad.

Buy Rachael Ray Peeling Tool, $9 on Amazon.com

A red OXO cherry and olive pitter.

A single-use kitchen tool that’s not the pits

Quickly tackle that haul of seasonal cherries for pie filling or an olive medley for tapenade. While it could be considered a “specialty” gadget, the time and sanity savings easily earn this pitter’s place in your kitchen drawer. Need one more delicious reason to take the plunge: Guignolet. You’re welcome.

Buy OXO Good Grips Cherry and Olive Pitter, $13 on Amazon.com

Two red shrimp deveiners.

Shrimply the best

We’ve dubbed this device “the shrimper dude.” The little fellow easily peels and deveins a passel of shrimp and gives you more time to swill down a cold beer while you simmer a pot of creamy grits for shrimp and grits.

Buy Shrimp Peeler and Deveiner, $11 on Amazon.com

A blue-handled Microplane.

A pithy grater

This is the one tool that may never leave your countertop. It easily removes zest of citrus without catching the underlying pith. It makes quick work of garlic and ginger. And its insanely sharp surface makes quick work even of trickier-to-grate stuff like cheese, vegetables, and chocolate. And—this can be our little secret—if you’ve ever burned the bottom of a loaf of bread or some buns, once the bread is cool, a quick swipe of the rasp will file off the burnt bottoms and nobody will be the wiser.

Buy Microplane Grater, $12 on Amazon.com


All products featured on Leite’s Culinaria are independently selected by our staff. 

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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