Chances are you think some of your small kitchen appliances serve only one purpose. While you might not let your goldfish dwell in your blender, did you know you could make mashed potatoes in your coffee maker, or whip up a mean margarita in an ice cream machine? Well, it's time to get the most out of your kitchenware. Read on to learn more innovative uses for the common and not-so-common kitchen appliances.
Cook food in it. Yes, you read that right. Margaret Minnicks of Examiner, provides a list of 10 foods that can be prepared in your coffee maker, along with instructions. Chicken, mashed potatoes and a chocolate fondue are among the unexpected dishes in Minnicks' repertoire.
Ice cream maker
Whip up other frozen concoctions.Real Simple tells you how to make yummy treats, such as Cola slushies and frozen hot chocolate, in an ice cream maker. Editors share recipes for some adult-friendly beverages too, like a margarita and a frozen lime rickey.
Make a delicate laundry powder. The staff at DoItYourself says you can use a blender for household chores beyond food preparation. For example, Stop throwing out those itty-bitty pieces of soap. Instead, pulverize them in your blender to create a powder that's perfect for washing delicate fabrics.
Do some odd jobs. If you don't mind dirtying up your blender (and possibly never drinking from it again), you can mix cement, make sawdust or create papier-mâché without the dreaded mess, according to DoItYourself.
Steam your towels. Bet you never thought your rice cooker could be used as a towel steamer. Real Simple explains how to warm up washcloths by steaming them in your rice cooker, and suggests serving them to dinner guests. If you'd prefer to pamper yourself, the steamed towels can be used in conjunction with a moisturizer for a quick hand treatment.
Use it as a slow cooker. In another article, Real Simple reveals how your rice cooker can double as a slow cooker. Providing you add enough liquid to the rice cooker, soups and stews can be simmered over long periods of time. What's more, they won't burn or boil over (as they sometimes do in slow cookers). Editors also explain how to make oatmeal and other hot cereals, steam vegetables and even poach fruit all in your rice cooker.
Warm dinner plates. A post on the TheKitchn.com says to warm plates in your toaster oven before serving. A regular oven may only go as low as 200°F, but a counter-top oven can be set to a lower temperature. Author Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan suggests heating plates for five minutes at 170°F.
Toast, roast and bake. In addition, TheKitchn.com lists other uses for toaster ovens, which include toasting nuts, roasting meats and making small batches of baked goods.
Make a grilled cheese.Real Simple says a waffle iron is designed to make a superior grilled cheese sandwich. Unlike a frying pan, the waffle iron creates dimples in the bread, increasing its surface area and giving it a nice crunch. The iron also divides it into four pieces, which is convenient for child-sized portions or snacks.
Cook biscuits. In this video, Rob Barrett of the blog Cooking for Dads demonstrates how to prepare biscuits in a waffle iron.
Experiment with other batter-based products. The editors at Chow had a theory that "anything with a batter base or that required a crispy texture could be waffled." They put that theory to the test by preparing brownies, muffins and hash browns in a waffle iron with much success.
You may not be brave enough to try all of these tips. Even if you experiment with a few, you'll be sure to switch up the old kitchen routine and put your small appliances to work.
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