Kitchen appliances are as commonplace as anything else in houses these days. We have microwaves to heat things quickly, ovens to cook large things, and stove tops for everything between. Where most people often find their kitchens lacking are in the areas of specialized convenience such as mixers, slow cookers, pressure cookers, and juicers.

Make Life Easier

Kitchen appliances are all about making life easier. Imagine in the days of old; having to manually grind up grains every time your wanted to make bread—then having to actually make the bread! Things like bread warmers, toasters, and bread slicers have greatly improved our experience of such. During the holiday season we are often bombarded by demands that leave us with more things to do and less time to do them in. To help address these issues of familial antics we’ve come up with list of the top 5 kitchen appliances that can help you survive the holidays!

Pressure Cookers

Pressure cookers are some of the most underrated appliances on the market. They are very similar to slow cookers in their appearance and also provide the option for the exact same functionality if desired (in most cases). As a general rule, most pressure cookers are also slow cookers but not many slow cookers are also pressure cookers. As Mixed Concern notes “some of the best pressure cookers on the market today are used on a daily basis only for their slow cooker abilities.” A pressure cooker can help cut down cook times dramatically and ensure you’re able to cook more in a smaller window of time. Of course, they come with all the automated benefits of slow cookers as well!

Bread Warmers

Now, I know what you’re thinking—breadwarmers!? In truth, an oven can usually suffice for warming up bread in an acceptable manner. During the holidays however, one’s oven is often being used extensively for recipes that require a high amount of heat. If you toss a few loafs of bread into the oven while cooking a turkey at 375 degrees you’re not likely to come through the experience with a smile on your face. Bread warmers come in many different shapes and sizes from cabinet mount to counter top versions. Having a dedicated bread warmer appliance can help to cut down on the dual use of your oven which can make serving a much less complicated task.

Electric Mixers

Electric mixers are among the largest godsends for those of us whom find ourselves making many scratch pastries, cookies, cakes, pies, or other recipes that involve voluminous mixing of ingredients. I’d argue that ordering out desserts during your holiday kitchen rush is ideal, considering that the best desert recipes are an art-form unto themselves! For those battling the tides however, an electric kitchen mixer can help cut your work into a fraction of the time. Using a high-capacity electric mixer can help you to create batch recipes in one fell swoop! You might not have the highest rating for variety among your desert critics but you’ll certainly have the highest marks for consistency.

Espresso Machines

Cafe quality espresso is something that many people aren’t familiar with. Not only will the extra caffeine be a much welcomed treat by your family and friends alike, but having such high quality offerings will also serve as entertainment! I suggest having several different roasts available as well as all the fixings needed to make frappuccinos, cappuccinos, and any other types of –ccinos you think your guests might enjoy. We broke down and bought an espresso machine for our home a few years ago and haven’t looked back since. After awhile the luster and novelty begin to wear thin, but that won’t be the case for your holiday guests! Having access to espresso during the holidays will keep the good times rolling! (also access to the liquor cabinet)

Ice Makers

Ah the ice maker. As you’re rushing around the kitchen to try and ensure everything goes off without a hitch the last thing you need is Uncle Dan stumbling in to get into the freezer to freshen up his Whiskey. The low-fi fix for this is to have a cooler set aside with ice just for drinks. While this is effective, you might be seeking a slightly more classy approach for intimate family dinners. Built in icemakers are great appliances but aren’t always a cinch to put in. When faced with an imminent family affair you might not have time to hire the plumber and electrician needed to situate your kitchen’s new addition. For times such as these there exists counter top ice makers. These types of ice maker machines are convenient alternatives to more permanent solutions.

Remember: Holidays Should be Fun for You Too!

Cooking for large family gatherings during the holidays can be a burden on even the best of us. There’s no shame in wanting to cut corners, resenting Aunt Susan for not liking your sweet potato casserole recipe, or for wanting to beat the children (don’t beat your children). These times are like whirlswinds of stress and high demand on your ability as a chef. By looking to appliances like pressure cookers or kitchen mixers you can greatly lessen the overall burden you may face. After all, if you aren’t stuck in the kitchen the entire evening you might even be able to enjoy the party!