These days, there's a laundry list of single-use gadgets and life-changing appliances that are seemingly poised to change the way we all cook. There are microwaveable popcorn poppers that allow for speedy snacks, pricey smart toasters for perfectly browned bagels and waffles, and nifty reusable storage bags that keep leftovers fresh—and that's just skimming the surface.
And while these gadgets certainly do make a difference in the kitchen (and are arguably quite fun), there are other, more pressing products that you may ultimately rely on and use more regularly. If it's these you're after, Amazon boasts a slew of essential tools, appliances, knives, and cookware that will fundamentally alter the way you cook.
Keep reading for 25 best-selling kitchen products on Amazon that every home cook should call their own—everything is $25 or less.
These stainless steel cooling racks are the perfect size for letting hot brownies rest. They’re small enough to insert into a sheet pan—to bake chicken wings or broil fish—and are designed with small crosswire spacing, so nothing falls through the cracks.
“I should have bought these years ago,” one five-star reviewer says. “It’s amazing how often these racks get used around our kitchen. The great thing about them is that they’re two small racks instead of one large one, which increases their versatility from cookies and muffins to fried chicken.”
To buy: $12 (originally $20); amazon.com
There’s no need to waste parchment paper when you can pull out a reusable nonstick baking mat. Designed to fit half-sheet pans, the silicone mats can hold everything from dinner rolls to cookies.
“These baking mats are absolutely fantastic,” one reviewer writes. “The quality is superb and I use them for just about everything I put in the oven. I love that they protect all my baking sheets.”
To buy: $14; amazon.com
Everyone needs a sturdy set of mixing bowls, and this one includes six different sizes, ideal for prepping, mixing, stirring, and kneading dough. Amazon shoppers agree, seeing as they’ve given it nearly 16,000 five-star reviews, with customers noting how lightweight and high-quality the bowls are.
“These prep bowls are a major game changer in the kitchen,” one shopper writes. “I use at least one, if not more, for about every dish I cook. Love that they’re lightweight, easy to clean, and easy to store since they nest within each other.”
To buy: $25; amazon.com
Making coffee at home no longer has to feel inferior to the barista version thanks to this handheld milk frother. Simply make your preferred beverage and let the battery-operated tool froth everything up—no expensive espresso machine required.
“I’ve been using this for a few weeks,” one reviewer says. “It makes amazing froth that holds throughout an entire cup of coffee.”
To buy: $20; amazon.com
If you’re working with nonstick cookware, a cast iron skillet will absolutely upgrade your cooking to the point where you’ll taste the difference. Sear, sauté, bake, broil, braise, fry, and grill like a pro with the even heat retention of this model from Lodge, a shopper-favored brand.
“This pan never leaves the stove,” one of 67,000 five-star reviewers says. “I use it at least once a day—it is so versatile.”
To buy: $15 (originally $27); amazon.com
Preserve fruits, pickles, salsas, syrups, and sauces in these freezer-safe Mason jars, which come complete with lids and bands. If you aren’t into canning, the jars can be used to whip up salad dressings and store leftovers—or simply repurposed as drinking glasses.
“I like the fact that these jars are perfect in size, multi-purpose use, and easy to clean,” one reveiwer writes.
To buy: $22 (originally $43); amazon.com
Mimic diner- and fast food-style burgers with this cast iron burger press, which helps smash patties into a 6-inch flat shape. The raised edges lock in juice and fats, enhancing the flavor and allowing for cracked edges and a juicy center.
“This is a remarkably sturdy piece of equipment,” one reviewer says. “I throw a burger into the cast iron skillet and smash the burger with the press. It results in an amazing patty with a crisp sear.”
To buy: $15; amazon.com
This Pyrex casserole dish with extra-large handles doubles as storage thanks to the included lid. Roast vegetables, bake the TikTok-famous feta pasta, and warm up food in this all-purpose container, which is dishwasher-, freezer-, microwave-, and oven-safe.
“I have used this dish several times in the past few months and it has pleased me with every dish,” a five-star reviewer says. “The lid fits well and is handy to have to chill leftovers.”
To buy: $16; amazon.com
Snip herbs, butterfly chicken, and open up plastic-sealed food with these all-purpose kitchen shears. The blades are crafted from stainless steel that resists rusting, and the handle is comfortable, featuring a soft grip that allows for stability while cutting.
“These are the best kitchen shears I’ve ever had,” a five-star reviewer writes. “They cut through anything—seriously.”
To buy: $8 (originally $10); amazon.com
This cutlery organizer has picked up over 37,000 five-star ratings, with shoppers raving that it’s perfect for small kitchens. The unique design actually creates more space in a drawer, stacking forks and knives in different compartments for easy identification
“This utensil organizer is legit a game changer,” one reviewer writes. “It’s compact and holds all of my forks, butter knives, and spoons. I have so much drawer space now I almost don’t know what to do with it.”
To buy: $10; amazon.com
These durable cutting boards come in small, medium, and large sizes and are outfitted with rubber borders that prevent them from sliding all over the place. The handy grooves catch juices and other mess so that the counter stays clean.
“Having used the same wooden cutting board for years, I finally gave in and purchased this set,” a shopper writes. “As soon as the set arrived, I used the boards to cut vegetables for shishkabobs: It was as if I was living a dream. I had forgotten how nice it is to use well-designed, quality tools made for the job.”
To buy: $23 (originally $40); amazon.com
This 10-inch bread knife easily glides through even the crustiest of bread thanks to the highest-quality Japanese steel and razor-sharp edges it boasts. The ergonomic handle and textured finger points allow for comfort while slicing and prevents slips.
One shopper says that the bread knife cuts “like butter—warm butter at that. What a pleasure! It is like we’ve been trying to cut bread with a wooden spoon all these years.”
To buy: $23; amazon.com
Cheese deserves to be sliced with a tool designed to do just that—not a flimsy butter knife—and this 12-piece set beyond fits the bill. Spread, slice, and grab hard and soft cheeses during gatherings or simply while you’re by yourself.
“These are exquisite,” one five-star reviewer says. “They are high quality and my wife’s charcuterie dreams are all coming to life.”
To buy: $12 (originally $13); amazon.com
There’s a reason this handy appliance has picked up nearly 100,000 five-star reviews: The compact and lightweight machine can quickly make anything from paninis and hash browns to biscuits and waffles.
“I had no idea what a small waffle maker could do for my life,” one reviewer says. “This silly little thing is perfect. I set it up and within one day I had more waffles than I have had in a year.”
To buy: $10 (originally $15); amazon.com
Never rely on measuring cups again with this digital kitchen scale, which weighs in grams, pounds, ounces, fluid ounces, and milliliters. The four sensors are accurate within 1 gram or .1 ounce, so you know you can trust it, and the scale also has a tare function. Plus, a portion of every purchase goes to the Global Orphan Project.
“Professional cooks have praised kitchen scales forever,” one reviewer writes, “but I never thought I needed one until I got a recipe I really couldn’t make without one. It helped me so much that I started using it for other recipes and improved my skills in them.”
To buy: $13 (originally $14); amazon.com
You’ll no longer have to guess whether a whole chicken or steak is cooked through thanks to this digital meat thermometer. Simply jab it and get a readout within three to five seconds.
“If you care about meat temperatures, get this,” one reveiwer writes. “I used to end up guessing temperatures because it’s a hassle to check the temperature on all the steaks. Now I can cook each one to the correct temperature with almost no effort.”
To buy: $12 (originally $14); amazon.com
Grate and zest just about anything with this tool, from citrus and garlic to ginger and chocolate—along with Parmesan cheese, of course. The razor-sharp blade can slice through even the toughest ingredients, and the curved edge allows you to rest the grater on the counter while you work.
“I never thought I’d have such intense feelings for a lemon zester,” one shopper writes. “This thing is AMAZING and works so well. It showed that lemon who’s boss.”
To buy: $13; amazon.com
Easily peel potatoes, carrots, apples, and other tough-skinned fruits and vegetables with this swivel peeler. The non-slip grip is comfortable to hold—even after barreling through a pound of potatoes—and is finished off with a built-in potato eye remover for blemishes and other unsightly spots.
“You just run [the peeler] down the item you want to peel and it does the rest with no effort required on your part at all, except for letting it glide,” one shopper shares. “Whoever designed this did an excellent job and I am in love.”
To buy: $10; amazon.com
This bench hook is actually multiple tools in one: Use it to slice through pizza, split dough into equal pieces, carry chopped ingredients from a cutting board to a hot pan, and even scrape extra bits off the counter. Plus, a ruler is drawn onto one edge, perfect for anyone measuring fresh pasta.
“Here’s a simple tool that will last a lifetime,” one shopper shares. “I particularly like this one because it’s so comfortable in the hand and very easy to clean.”
To buy: $7 (originally $10); amazon.com
Accurately measure spices and baking ingredients with these metal measuring spoons, complete with six sizes ranging from ⅛ teaspoon to 1 tablespoon. The set includes a handy leveler to allow for the highest accuracy.
“I’ve owned many types of measuring spoons over the years, but these are the best quality I’ve ever seen,” a shopper reviews. “They are made of high-caliber stainless steel, which is must sturdier than typical plastic or aluminum. They feel great in my hands and have a lovely, glossy appearance.”
To buy: $12 (originally $25); amazon.com
Scoop out French fries, doughnuts, boiled eggs, cooked pasta, and more—without taking excess oil and water along with you—when using this stainless steel spider skimmer. The long handle keeps hands away from a hot pot, preventing burns and oil splashes.
“This is the perfect size for scooping the pasta from pot to bowl,” one shopper shares. “No more risking scalding hot water draining pasta through a colander. And the pasta water remains in the pot if you need it for thinning the sauce.”
To buy: $16 (originally $21); amazon.com
These soft spatulas can support you in a number of ways. Wield the large spoon to stir onions, grab the rubber spatula to gently fold dry ingredients into wet, and scatter frosting onto cake with the spatula spreader.
“It makes cooking so much easier,” one shopper writes. “I hate leaving food in the pot. Because they are flexible, I can easily scoop out all the soup, sauce, oatmeal, grits, and mashed potatoes, leaving nothing behind.”
To buy: $12 (originally $19); amazon.com
Fill these chef-approved squeeze bottles with everything from olive oil and syrup to homemade salad dressing for easy pouring. The set contains one medium and one large bottle, complete with thick and thin tips.
“I bought this for using with oil in my cast iron,” one shopper shares. “Pouring oil out of the container has always been tough, as you either get a drop or two in your pan or way too much. This little bottle gives you great control.”
To buy: $10; amazon.com
Precisely measure martinis and whiskey sours with this trusty double jigger. The jigger has quarter-ounce line measures on both sides to ensure an exact pour.
“The perfect double jigger for the home (or professional) bartender,” one reviewer says. “The rubberized grip is very nice and the jigger has a very solid feel. Highly recommend for anyone dabbling in bartending.”
To buy: $10; amazon.com
This quiet coffee grinder can pulverize up to 9 tablespoons of beans—enough for 12 cups of coffee. Just pop out the removable grinding chamber, fill with beans, and press the power button. It can even be used to grind whole spices and nuts.
“The noise level is very good,” one shopper says. “I remember my dad waking me up at 4am every morning with [his] coffee grinder. I never wanted one because of how loud they were. This thing is fantastic. I can use it and not worry about waking up my kiddos.”
To buy: $18; amazon.com
This story originally appeared on Food & Wine.