Every kitchen has a few staple appliances, including a stove, refrigerator, and a dishwasher. Many have other small kitchen appliances that might be considered essential, too, like a microwave, coffee maker, and mixer. For any individual or family getting more involved in cooking and baking, a new small appliance to add to the collection can be the perfect gift. Here are our picks for the 10 best ones to consider.
1. Cordless small kitchen appliances
As someone who is often multi-tasking in the kitchen and has been in situations where I’m struggling to find an outlet to plug in something without knocking over other appliances, bowls and ingredients I’m also using, having a small appliance without a cord would be really beneficial. This also means you can move over to the dining room or other area to mix while the kitchen counters are otherwise occupied. Several brands offer cordless small appliances, including KitchenAid and Breville, and that range from hand mixers to immersion blenders, and personal blenders.
2. Air fryers
Air fryers are growing in popularity as must-have kitchen appliances, and they come in a variety of capacities. The purpose? You can cook everything from big batches of chicken wings or nuggets to French fries or fish, using little to no oil. Families and individuals still get that comfort-food crispy texture without all of the extra fat and cholesterol. With features like cool-touch handles and non-slip rubber feet, air fryers often come with aluminum baskets with a non-stick coating, so clean-up is a cinch. Throw in the night’s dinner and tend to chores; an alarm will alert you when the cook is done.
Best Buy offers a wide selection of microwaves, and we recently reviewed the Breville countertop 3-in-1 convection microwave, which we absolutely loved not only for its basic operation as a microwave, but also its convection cook option as well as the ability to air fry foods in the machine. Whether you want a compact microwave for quick re-heating or a more powerful and versatile machine, an upgraded microwave can help speed up cooking and prep time.
4. Espresso machines
Sure, every household might have a basic coffeemaker. But if you know someone who loves, and is very particular about their java, consider upgrading them to a new machine. We recently reviewed the high-end Breville Barista Pro and found it super easy to use and customize drinks to your liking. To enjoy the best of both worlds, get a dual-function machine that can make both espresso and coffee, like the De’Longhi all-in-one coffee and espresso machine we recently reviewed. Check out a wide variety of the best espresso machines you can buy at Best Buy.
Yes, you read that correctly. It isn’t a typo. Breville’s latest small appliances are called “bluicers,” referencing their dual function as both juicers and blenders. We reviewed the 3X and 3X Pro models and loved their versatility, ease of use, easy cleanup, and space-saving two-in-one designs. You can use them to make fresh-pressed juice, smoothies, slushies – you name it. This is one of the best new small kitchen appliance categories you probably never knew about.
6. Stand mixer
For years, I have relied on my KitchenAid stand mixer to help me make homemade bread, mix batter for cakes, whip cream, and assist me with holiday baking. We reviewed the Artisan stand mixer a few years back, and it remains a great option for any home baker or cook. What I particularly love about KitchenAid stand mixers, in particular, is that they also works with a variety of optional attachments for doing everything from cutting homemade pasta dough to grinding meat and even making homemade ice cream. But there’s a wide selection of stand mixers from which to choose to help you up your game in the kitchen.
7. Toaster oven
A toaster oven is a great alternative for those who don’t want a microwave, able to perform multiple tasks in one versatile device, including everything from cooking pizza for lunch to toasting bread for a quick breakfast on-the-go. The latest models even include additional functions, like being able to air fry. Does it really get any better than that? Best Buy editor Shelly Wutke said she was “completely hooked” after reviewing the Cuisinart air fryer toaster oven last year, which has presets for frying various types of foods, from chicken nuggets to vegetables, along with all of the expected features of a toaster oven.
8. Instant pot
Year-after-year, the Instant Pot remains one of the most popular small appliances for the kitchen, and there’s good reason. It’s a versatile multicooker that can pressure cook virtually any type of food in a fraction of the time it might otherwise take. It has preset modes for everything from chili to porridge, rice to boxed cakes, and some models even have a mode for making homemade yogurt. It’s easy to put an entire meal inside, let everything cook together, and go from cook to table quicker than a slow cooker could ever dream of doing. I bought my Instant Pot about five years ago and have never looked back. I continue to use it multiple times a week, whether it’s to make a full meal, warm up a quick weekday lunch, whip up a quick batch of mac & cheese for my son, or get a side dish of vegetables, potato, or corn on the cob done in a jiffy.
I bought my husband a SodaStream for his birthday last year given how he loves drinking fizzy water. So far, he loves it. Fill the included bottle with water, pop it into the machine, and within seconds, the water is carbonated to your taste. There are both manual machines that don’t require power, which are perfect for keeping by your home office, and automatic ones that have to be plugged in. Add fresh fruit, flavour drops, or whatever you want to infuse it with flavour and enjoy. Once the CO2 cylinder is empty, you can take it to any Best Buy location to get a new one for a nominal fee. Each one should last for a month or more, depending on how much fizzy water you drink. A SodaStream small appliance is the perfect gift for anyone on your list who enjoys bubbly water, helping them save money over the long run not to mention reduce the amount of plastic waste and/or aluminum recycling from cans.
10. Cordless stick or robot vacuum
Is a cordless stick vacuum really a kitchen appliance? Well, no, not really. That said, it’s absolutely useful to have in the kitchen. I have my Dyson stick vacuum mounted on the wall in a small space between my refrigerator and the back door that leads to our backyard. It’s the perfect spot for grabbing it when I need a quick cleanup of spilled rice or flour, or just want to do a quick pass on the kitchen tiles. I reviewed the Dyson V15 Detect Complete this summer and it totally wowed me with the inclusion of the Slim Fluffy brush that works with lasers to illuminate the dust and debris on your floors while providing a real-time look at how much debris is being captured on its LCD. When it comes to gifting, however, anyone can appreciate a robot vacuum, which can scoot across the floors, kitchen tiles, and carpeting, cleaning them without you having to lift a finger, even when you’re not home! iRobot is one of the leaders in this space, and we recently reviewed the Roomba j7+, which has a new feature that can detect pet excrement and cords, avoiding them and preventing a mess or unsightly tangle. But there are plenty of options at all price points, and they go on sale all the time.
11. Multi-use small appliance
One of the latest trends in small appliances that can do double, triple, sometimes even quadruple the tasks in one, saving both save and affording convenience. It started with the Instant Pot, which is a versatile multicooker than pressure cooks, slow cooks, steams, and more. But the concept has morphed into many other areas. There are microwaves that can air fry, as mentioned, toaster ovens with convection cooking; the possibilities and options are endless. I recently reviewed the Cuisinart 3-in-1 microwave air fryer oven that functions as a traditional microwave along with an air fryer and mini convection oven. This device, and other multi-function small appliances like it, could easily replace three small appliances in a kitchen, which is a dream for those with limited space.
A blender is one of those small appliances that, unless you have a really specific need for one, you might not bother to fork over the dough for something new. But once you have one, you realize just how much you can do with it, which is precisely why blenders make great gifts for those who wouldn’t take the plunge and buy one for themselves. Some of the latest blenders don’t just blend hot and cold ingredients, but they can even heat them! This means you can not only blend up squash or pumpkin with stock, other veggies, and spices for a delicious and comforting homemade soup after you cook everything on the stovetop, you can also cook the soup right in the blender once the main ingredient is soft. I recently reviewed the Wolf Gourmet Pro Performance blender that can do just that, plus make your morning smoothies, and more. But the blender category goes beyond full-sized models to include everything from immersion blenders for whipping up a quick batch of homemade hummus for a healthy snack with vegetables, to personal blenders for after-workout power protein shakes.
As an avid cook and baker myself, I would be totally pleased to see any of these small appliances in my kitchen, or wrapped up with a little bow (hint, hint, family and friends!) In fact, I already own many of them and have never regretted the purchase. Each one has a place in my kitchen and a specific use. And, in every case, I use them all at least once a week, often much more frequently.
If you’re looking for the perfect gift for the aspiring, professional, or budding chef on your list, explore a variety of small kitchen appliances with plenty of features and options available online at Bestbuy.ca