You’re not a colander, so stop straining yourself to get dinner on the table.
We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.
The miracle-working Instant Pot, which combines seven tools (including a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and rice cooker) in one appliance and prepares gourmet meals in a fraction of the time you’re probably used to.
Promising review: “I absolutely despise spending a lot of time in the kitchen after work. I am tired, just want to pour a glass of wine, and binge-watch Supernatural. My boyfriend can't cook to save his life, so that isn't much help either. I'd feel better eating something created out of real, edible foods rather than microwaved in a pouch with fake cheese, so I cook even when I stay over at his house. Just when I was pondering the option of breaking up and finding a man who can cook (not really), INSTANT POT HAPPENED! Dinner is done and ready to eat every time in less than an hour. Sometimes WAY less than an hour. I can't believe I survived 30 years without one! It would have been AMAZING back when I was in college! I am constantly learning new things I can whip up (sometimes trial and error, sometimes recipe books). I can throw frozen chicken breasts in it, seasoning, just hit poultry setting, adjust the time up a bit, and boom. Super tender amazing chicken. Something about handling raw chicken makes me too disgusted to eat it once it's cooked, so being able to throw it in frozen is such a relief.” —Sunahm
Or, if it’s just the rice cooker you’re after, this Zojirushi — which cooks 10 perfect cups of rice in under an hour — is the cream of the crop.
Promising review: “If you're pressed for time and you cook a lot of rice or other boiled/steamed grains, BUY THIS RICE COOKER. I would give it more than five stars if I could. It's a triumph of convenience engineering. I've owned a couple $20 rice cookers, which I used when I didn't have enough time to spare to pay attention to heat-on, heat-off cycles when I was making a meal. Now, I just select the type of grain from a super-intuitive menu, select the time I want it ready, and push a button. The rice is always perfect when the beeper goes off, and is still perfect the next day.” —Kringle
A nonstick cookware set, like Tasty’s for Walmart, that offers great heat distribution, for even — and more importantly, fast —
Promising review: “This cookware set has it all! Not just all the pieces (11) one needs in the kitchen, it also has flamin' red-hot STYLE! This set looks too good to simply push the old pots and pans back in the cupboard — gotta get rid of 'em altogether! Really though, the nonstick ceramic surface makes the pieces easy to clean, but thankfully they're dishwasher-safe, too, for those of us who prefer to toss 'em in the wash and migrate to the couch. The silicone handles keep the handles cool — greatest thing since sliced bread! LOVE this set.” —Ifei
Get an 11-piece set from the Tasty collection at Walmart for $99 (available in three colors).
A meal planner, so you don’t have to drain 50% of your energy on a Chopped-style scavenger hunt in your kitchen every time you get home from work.
Promising review: “As a busy working mom, this is fantastic! I keep an ongoing list of groceries needed on the right side (I modify mine based on what store I am going to) and then what's for dinner on the left side. I have four teenagers and there is always someone who is asking, “What's for dinner?” so this does the trick as now they just need to look at the list! Perfect for the busy family, and LOVE the magnet on the back!” —Lauren T.
Get it from Amazon for $6.08.
A fruit soft-serve maker, if you’re looking for a healthy and easy dessert that utilizes the produce you already have hanging around the house.
Promising review: “This is a pretty amazing machine. I cannot explain how skeptical I was of the Yonana. I also can't explain just how wrong I was. The machine works better than I could have ever imagined. I actually find the end product to be more like ice cream than some of the low-fat ice creams you buy in the store. It is delicious. The fact that you can have desert without any added sugar and fat is just total bonus.” —D. Smith
Get it from Amazon for $40.97.
A speedy defrosting tray, for anyone who loves a good meat dinner but hates the process of waiting around for it to thaw.
Promising review: “It thaws food out nice and even, and you don't have to worry about partially cooking the item or finding that it's still half frozen in the middle, like you would using a microwave. As per the instructions, it does help to run hot water on it first. No moving parts, easy to clean, and takes hardly any storage space.” —RICKICAR
Get it from Bed Bath and Beyond for $14.99.
A rapid egg cooker, which prepares six eggs in any manner your heart desires — hard-, medium-, and soft-boiled eggs, two poached eggs, scrambled eggs, you name it.
Promising review: “I love hard boiled eggs for protein especially when I’m on the go as a student/worker but it’s hard to wait for the water to boil then put In the eggs and get ready all at the same time. This cooker is amazing!! Saves me time, it’s quick and I don’t have to watch it while it cooks I can go get ready and then I hear a loud buzzer notifying me when the eggs are done! (The buzzer is really loud sounds like a basketball game buzzer) I was surprised how fast the eggs cooked and was afraid they were still raw.” —OnAJourney
Or, if you’d rather treat yourself to a healthy omelet after work, this microwavable stoneware clay dish makes a killer one in under 45 (!) seconds.
Promising review: “I have four men in my family — my husband, my father, and my two grown boys. I bought each one of them 45-Second Omelet Maker and each one them raves about it! My husband makes Denver omelets, my father uses egg whites, and my boys use it to make an omelet for a bagel sandwich. I have made several for myself and cannot believe what a wonderful-tasting, healthy, and eye-pleasing omelet is created in 45 seconds!” —Princess Geek
Get it from Uncommon Goods for $25.
A two-in-one grill and griddle pan, so you can cut corners and cook two parts of the meal at once while keeping them separate.
Promising review: “It's a very useful item, to be able to fry meat and eggs at the same time. Plus, being nonstick, it cleans up easily. I highly recommend this item.” —mary p
Get it from Amazon for $39.99.
Multi-tool mason jars that consolidate spiralizing, juicing, and grating into one easy (and easily storable) contraption.
The set includes a canning jar, cliptop round jar, spiralizer top, juicer top, grater top, and dipping pot.
Promising review: “Making dinner and juicing is so much easier, and these jars are adorable on my counter.” —Joyful
Get the set from Uncommon Goods for $25.
A can colander, the answer to your tuna- and canned-goods-related cries for help.
Promising review: “It fits perfectly in a standard tuna can (as well as, I am sure, other types of cans/jars, etc., but I can't speak to that yet). The fit is so good that absolutely no tuna has escaped in the five or six times I have now used it, and the tuna is pressed DRY in five to ten seconds! The unit is very sturdy and does not flex at all — no feeling that if I press too hard it will bend or break. I no longer get any mess on my hands, other than getting the tuna can lid out of the can so I can use this perfect invention.” —Brian
Get it from Amazon for $6.99.
A two-tier food steamer that you can use to quickly prepare meats, veggies, and grains all at once.
Promising review: “Amazed at how fast I can cook a meal with this product. Absolutely love it.” —Cathy Parker
Get it from Amazon for $29.69.
A countertop convection toaster oven, which will feel like a level-up even when you’re throwing in leftovers that would have otherwise gone in the microwave.
Promising review: “Let me start with this is my first convection oven or toaster oven and I was a bit skeptical on how well this would work. I was very surprised and impressed to say the least. I bought this for my wife as a gift and i am sure glad I did, because this thing saves a lot of time cooking vs. my oven, and it also preheats faster. I have stopped using my microwave for a lot of things because of this, as well as my oven, except for very large roasts. For the price I would say you will not find a more useful kitchen appliance or a better-looking one.” —Tim
An air fryer to give your meals a nice crunch without adding oil or complicated steps — just plug in your digits on its easy-to-use touch panel.
Promising review: “The digital settings make it easy to select for different foods. So far we have cooked raw thawed-out chicken wings, drumsticks, hamburger patties w/blue cheese crumbles, and a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin. All have turned out fantastic! The frozen Tater Tots come out crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. We have used it to heat up pizza and wings and it does it quickly and tastes just like you just cooked it. The absolute best part: cleanup. We just wipe it out in between uses and clean it when we are done. One small pot and basket. It used to take an entire batch of pots and pans to cook all day on a Sunday for the week, now it takes one. I would highly recommend this.” —Keenbuddy
Get it from Walmart for $99.
An Aroma Housewares 3-in-1 Superpot, which has the capacity to turn any lazy dinner into an interactive, delicious shabu-shabu event. (That’s a Japanese meal of thinly sliced meat and vegetables boiled in water, for the uninitiated.)
Promising review: “I love this appliance!! It was very easy to start using and cooks everything perfectly. I have no complaints; this is definitely worth the money. I've used it to cook pasta, chicken, steak, grilled veggies, and more. It leaves nice grill marks on meat and veggies. I feel like a pro chef when I use it! I would recommend this to anyone looking to save cleaning time in the kitchen.” —Diana L.
A programmable bread maker with gluten-free and express settings that’ll give you the gift of delicious, freshly baked bread when you come home from work.
Promising review: “Really enjoy using this machine. Recently discovered that I cannot eat wheat and am now using The Wheat Belly Cookbook as a guide for meals. Most store-bought loaves of gluten-free are bread are very expensive and/or terrible tasting. Bread-making machine to the rescue. The gluten-free setting on this machine (one of 12 settings) has already seen extensive use and it (the machine) is a wonderful addition to our kitchen. It is quieter than we expected and has very little vibration. Cleanup is a breeze also. Follow the directions and read and understand the recipe chart in the owner's manual. Make several different breads and even rolls from the suggestions in the manual and then have fun creating your own masterpieces.” —Bruce Moriarty
A food container with a datable lid, so you don’t have to waste time guessing whether your leftovers are still good (and figuring it out the hard way).
Promising review: “Ideal for storing leftovers. Usually you either have to remember when the food was done OR you end up putting them in a container and trying to find a pen that will write on it and not rub off. So useful and practical.” —TERESA
Or you can disregard all of this and just ask your dog to cover for the evening.
Some reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.
Looking for the perfect gift for any occasion? Check out all of BuzzFeed’s gift guides!
Allison Krausman / BuzzFeed