Essentials

It’s not just the pros who can benefit from using these simple chef-y tools. Here is how you can, too!

Of course, College Recipe Cafe will earn a small commission from Amazon (to keep us caffeinated ☕) if you decide to purchase any of these items using the links below. We appreciate whatever kind support your clicks may bring. 🤗


Winco Sizzle Platter

An unexpected gem of cookware for cooking individual portions – that most people don’t know exists.

Sizzle what? I didn’t know what it was either until I learned how this humble platter is used in practically EVERY restaurant for broiling or roasting individual portions of, well, anything.

With one of these you can roast vegetables, bake fish filets, make cheesy toast, broil a steak, bake chicken nuggets, or gently reheat a dinner – without the need of a big bummer-to-clean baking sheet.


Cuisinart Smart Stick Blender

Makes blending more fun and feels pro!

If you watch cooking shows, you have probably seen a Chef use a stick blender to puree soup right in the pot. But it is equally good at blending healthy smoothies and mixing a batter for Oatmeal Banana Pancakes. Or use the chopper to crush the ice to make an ice cold summer drink. 🍸

What I love is it only requires a simple twist to assemble (and separate) – which makes it easy to clean and store in small places.


Oxo Salad Spinner

The name suggests this spinner is only for spinning lettuce. Pfft…you savvy cooks know it does so much more…

💥Use the inner basket to drain your pasta

💥Spin boiled butternut squash to remove excess water before mashing (no more soggy mashed squash)

💥Spin-dry washed fresh herbs before chopping (so they don’t blacken)

💥Remove excess water from rinsed potato quarters before tossing them with cooking oil so they crisp better when roasting in the oven (wait, what?)

The best part: All of the above, wastes less paper towel which also saves you 💰💰💰.


Utopia Kitchen Bar Mops

Keep your working area clean – like a pro!

The video clip is of me reaching for my Kitchen Bar Mop while doing a ZOOM event with University of Iowa students. Here are all the other ways you can use them while you cook:

✅ Dry your countertop (without wasting paper towel)

✅ Wrap around a hot pot handle to save your hands

✅ Used as a sanitary way to dry hands (instead of mucking up a tea towel)

✅ Mop up messes quicker than a dish cloth.


Cuisinart Knife Set

Killer value to chop like a boss.

Serious home chefs will turn their nose-up at this set (that I received for winning a local recipe contest) but I recommend them because I notice these knives:

  • look great
  • are budget friendly
  • stay sharp with minimal maintenance
  • have served me well for many years.

And oh yeah, that knuckle at the base of the blade – it is there for a reason. Use it to crush, break or separate whatever you are preparing.

Treat this set nice (aka don’t put them in the dishwasher) and they will stay shiny, sharp and looking new for a long time!


Questions about any of these items? Email me: brent@collegereipecafe.com


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