How Many Small Kitchen Appliances Do You Need?

I scanned the table of small kitchen appliances that have been hanging out in the garage since like May, unused, and said to myself, “Self – Do you really need these?”

And if I’m HONEST, the answer is no. Not all of them, for sure. Some of them, yes. But all of them? *cough*

The four were:

  • a Cuisinart Convection Bread Maker
  • a Cuisinart Food Processor
  • a Breville Juicer
  • a Ninja Food Processor/Blender. *hi-YA*

And so, I stared them down. Evaluating.

Which of you am I really going to use? Is one a duplicate, in terms of function, of another?

I’ll break these down for you. For now I am keeping two and getting rid of two. Of the ones I decided to sell on Craig’sList, one was an easy decision and one was a really hard decision.

Hard decision first:


The reality is that Stephen is an awesome husband, but he has issues in the gift giving department. He’s just not good at it. He wasn’t born with the forethought gene. So, when he got me this for Christmas one year, without me asking for it, I was stunned. As in speechless. I might have even welled up with tears. Because it was so incredibly thoughtful. Because I love to cook and didn’t have a food processor. And so, this has sentimental value.

Except I’ve had it now for several years and I don’t really use it. First of all, I never get it put together right on the first try. I’ll assemble it, get the food in there, and then hit the Pulse button. And nothing happens. I turn the bowl around so the handle is facing the other way and put the lid back on. Nothing. I take the whole thing off again, which inevitably dislodges the blade and I have to dig the food around or pour it in another container to get the blade to lay flat and by that time I’m sweating and cursing Cuisinart. Isn’t it supposed to make my life easier?

I find the Ninja exponentially easier to use, plus I can make smoothies in it. I talked to Stephen and he was okay with me selling the Cuisinart. So, there you go.

Sentimental clutter loses this round.

And now for the easy decision:

Nobody puts Cuisinart in the corner.

Nobody puts Cuisinart in the corner.

I used to make whole wheat based bread in this bad boy. And it rocks. It really does. But I’ve been counseled to not use it to make non-glutenous bread because it’s difficult to guarantee that you’ve gotten all of the microscopic gluten particles out of it. And Stephen is incredibly sensitive to gluten. And, really, it’s just not a risk I’m willing to take. Even a tiny bit of gluten makes him miserable and wipes him out for a day. Plus, I haven’t used it in over a year anyway.

And, if I really want to make bread, I’m pretty sure the oven can handle the job.

The two appliances on the table I decided to keep were the Ninja and the Juicer. But, they’re on borrowed time. If I don’t use them regularly, we’ll be having a chat, eye-to-blade.

I’m over keeping things because I might need them some day. If I’m not using them regularly, they’re not welcome to take up space in my kitchen. If something else in the kitchen can do the same job, I don’t need both.

And that’s all I’ve got to say about that.


Two movie references in this post. Anyone pick up on them? Just curious. Happy Friday!

20 Responses to How Many Small Kitchen Appliances Do You Need?

  1. I just donated a bread machine, ice cream maker and juicer to a local Humane Society Thrift shop. They had the books and were very slightly used…lol…..I love the gadgets, but like you, I had them in the shed on a shelf because I used them only occasionally. I did pick out Ninja for one reference but can’t find the other. Not much of a movie watcher. Take care.

    • I also donated all of my electronics stuff that I rarely used; these sorts of small things can really help someone to quite an extent. I also own a travel and leisure business and I donate my 20 percent earnings to the poor on monthly basis. Little deeds like these can really change the world, we should all step up and help others in need.

  2. “and that’s all I’ve got to say about that” – a great line by Forrest Gump, and one of my favorites.
    congratulations on your decision making.
    Sentimental purging is the hardest for me. I recently donated a blender to Goodwill. Why has it been sitting in my cupboard unused for 18 years? We bought it for my high school wrestler son who made power shakes in it. He died 18 years ago, and it has been kept just as he left it all that time. It was a very difficult decision, but realized I wasn’t using it, I wasn’t going to use it, and maybe the good memories would somehow find it the perfect new owner. I also finally cleaned out his desk this summer too. I admit, I cried a bit… ‘and that’s all I’ve got to say about that!”

    • Yep. One of my favorite movies. I’m sorry to hear about your son. I can’t even imagine how difficult that is. But you know what? Your memories of him won’t go away with the stuff. He’ll always be with you regardless. *Hugs*

  3. Whew! I was worried for your Ninja! I have a Magic Bullet . . . two actually! Why 2? Because when my first Magic Bullet bit the dust (we use it ALL THE TIME), I was without one for, like, an entire 36 hours. Painful! No smoothies for school breakfast? We even had to miss shake night! The horror! So we bought 2 replacements and one has been dutifully hiding in the storage closet just waiting for the one we apparently love more to get old and weary 🙂 Good for you for giving up items! Sentimental ones are the most difficult . . . kudos to you and your less clutterly kitchen – and your whole simple year. You are an inspiration!

    • I love me some Ninja! It makes great salsa, too. Never tried the Magic Bullet, but I’ve heard they’re super cool.

    • lol we got four, count ’em, FOUR magic bullet blenders for our wedding. Kept one and love it.

      I feel you on the food intolerance problems. My husband is violently allergic to dairy but I love the stuff, which means we have two of every single kitchen implement known to man to avoid cross contamination. I suppose I could just give up dairy, but I think I’d cry. Good for you being willing to use the oven instead of having a special GF breadmaker. I’m far too lazy to make it in the oven!

  4. How did your thing go yesterday? This post is very coherent, so I’m guessing no drug haze. 🙂

    Got rid of our bread machine a couple of years ago and haven’t missed it once. But I will admit to having both a blender and a food processor…

    • Thanks for asking! It went well, but time will tell if the relief lasts. But, full disclosure, I’m taking Vicodin, which doesn’t hurt. :0

  5. Hey! This is kind of an annoying question so please feel free to wait to respond until you’re feeling better!!! Please note it’s asked with the best intentions and just out of curiosity.

    I’m just curious how your husband went from seemingly having no idea about a gluten allergy to becoming so sensitive. Was it something he developed fairly suddenly? I’ve heard allergies can change every seven years or something and develop suddenly if you’re eating too much of one thing. Or, did he feel crappy for most of his life and not realize it? I ask because I’ve never done gluten free and I’ve always been a carbo-halic so I don’t think I’m gluten sensitive but I do have low energy which I contribute to other health things. I’ve read that gluten is not necessarily good for anyone (to me, it’s all a matter of degree) although some of course are much more sensitive/allergic. So, reading about it has made me want to try it but it’s such a super difficult change I’m not sure I’d be willing to do it so soon. Just curious what your husband’s experience was.


    • It’s not an annoying question at all! He’s actually been suffering from symptoms for many years, it’s just that we didn’t know the symptoms were related to celiac. He has been going to the doctor for different complaints, always to be told he’s fine. Joint pain, gastrointestinal issues, chronic fatigue, headaches, etc. We went to dinner with some friends, one who had recently been diagnosed with celiac, and a lightbulb went off. We then had him tested by an independent lab which showed him to carry the gene for celiac and to be gluten intolerant. We eliminated gluten from his diet and within a couple of weeks he was feeling totally different. If he slips up and gets gluten somehow, he immediately knows. And he’s lost about 20 pounds without doing anything else. He says it’s like somebody lifted the fog from his life.

      • I want to second how intolerance symptoms can sneak up on you. After a lifetime of eating soy and dairy, I recently started having excema and other problems. Eliminating those foods eliminated my symptoms. I didn’t reallize what my problems were for a long time because they came on gradually, and I hadn’t made any changes in my diet.

        Kanice, I’m glad you’re feeling not in pain, your meds are working, and you are able to declutter today!

    • Lauren,

      Great question. Hind sight being 20/20, I am guessing that I have suffered from a gluten intolerance for ten(10) years or so. Being in my mid 40’s now (gasp), I just assumed that feeling like crap was just a part of getting older. While I have slowed a step or two, suffering from the GI issues, near debilitating arthritis, fatigue, etc. is not normal. When I get a dose of gluten, I am immediately aware ( as is every one else…if you know what I mean.) it’s not so much that it snuck up on me as I became aware and am able to address the issue.

      Thanks so much for letting us share with ya’ll!

      • hey all! Thanks for your replies. That was very helpful. I don’t really tell people in normal life but I have fibromyalgia. It doesn’t really manifest itself with the exception that I feel mentally less acute (foggy, attention deficit and anxious) and also chronic fatigue. Like I said, I don’t think I have a gluten allergy but I’ve become curious what it would be like to do/try gfree because of its apparent/potential adverse health impacts in general which I haven’t researched, I’ve just heard about briefly (and because of its relation to fatigue/energy).

        I’m enjoying the simple life right now by living in an RV (with my man – seems weird to call someone a boyfriend after 7 years) which means I have a very small refrigerator for two people. I feel somehow like this would make it easier to do any type of elimination diet so who knows, maybe I’ll try sooner than later. Steve, I’m glad that you were able to pinpoint your health issues.

        During the process of being diagnosed with fibromyalgia ten years ago, I came to realize how important self-advocating is (I was 20 and 20 hours from home at college in a state I didn’t like with few close contacts). I have an inherited distrust/dislike of authority which helped me carve my own health path. After I had a few doctors tell me they didn’t think it was possible that I could have that condition because it was a geriatric disease I made my own appointment with a local rheumatologist. This was after I had researched for hours on the internet and a year after I became symptomatic – for me the change was like a light switch – and had my “holy crap” I’m not making this stuff up moment 🙂 (it wasn’t suggested to be my a professional or anyone really is what I’m saying).

        My point is that it is really hard to have a condition that many may not give full faith and credit which also does not manifest itself into outward physical symptoms (rash etc.) and I totally sympathize. At the time, fibromaylgia was less “sexy” than it is now (read: pharmaceutical companies couldn’t make bank off some whacked out meds with insane side effects) and it’s good to see other health issues becoming more widely accepted like celiac disease and gluten intolerance even if it may mean that the healthcare community may still be somewhat oblivious :(.

        Anyways, thanks again and sorry if this is rambling as I’m functioning off no sleep. I hope Candice, you are able to get some healing – as frustrating as “invisible” conditions can be, ones that cannot be solved with additive/subtractive measures can, I imagine be equally, if not more, frustrating (it sounds like what you’re going through is hell and I’m not trying to understate it but I am always weary of pain comparisons at all as that’s kind of the point – we can’t really compare our own pains right?). I’m sending decluttering, healthy, healing, hippy (better safe than sorry – there could be something to it :)) vibes your way!

  6. Oh this is me – I realised in getting a stick blender (free from a friend) I ended up with the whole ‘kit’ which includes all the attachments to grate and whisk. but I have a food processor for the grating (at least). Sigh – duplication. Thankfully no bread machine – I used to want for one, but now I too try to be GF. I’m not sure if it was eating gluten this weekend or the sugar (or both) but man I’m exhausted when I eat them!! To further conversations above, I started trying to eat less gluten on suggestion it might help my psorasis (skin problem). It hasn’t really, but now I can’t eat gluten without feeling uncomfortably full 🙁

  7. I have a hand cranked food processor. I love it. It lives in the cupboard. I live in an apartment so I don’t have a lot of space. I don’t drink coffee, I make bread with my hands and my blending needs are met with a hand blender that lives in a drawer so my counters are pretty much bare. Growing up my family felt a need/compulsion to cover every square inch of counter space with something. I hated it as it made cleaning really hard and there was not a lot of room for actual work. I suppose my clear counters are a form of rebellion.

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