Eating a healthy plant-based diet requires a little more work than you may be used to. Planning your meals in advance and making sure you always have healthy snacks on hand can help. And, the following tools can make healthy meal preparation much easier. These small kitchen appliances are definitely worth the investment if you don’t already own them.
1. Blender. A blender is absolutely essential for making smoothies — a great way to start your day off with plant compounds and to get more greens into your diet. Blenders start around $20 for a basic model, but if you plan on using yours a lot, you may want to get one with a little more power. For serious performance that can liquefy anything, Vitamix machines are considered the gold gold standard and run upwards of $300.
2. Stick (immersion) blender. My stick blender is my favorite kitchen gadget. It’s great for making pureed vegetable soups right in the pot — no need to transfer to a regular blender and make a mess in the process. I also use mine to make my chocolate avocado mousse. Immersion blenders run around $20 – $40.
3. Food processor. These also run the gamut from $20 on up, depending on what kind of features and power you want. I have a basic two-speed model that I use for hummus and almond butter. My husband also grinds up nuts for his various cookie concoctions and homemade oatmeal blend. If you plan on doing some serious food processing, you can get food processors with numerous settings and multiple blade attachments.
4. Vegetable steamer. Steaming is one of the best ways to prepare vegetables to prevent the loss of nutrients. Best of all, it makes it super easy to add a veggie to your meal – just throw some veggies in the top strainer, put a small amount of water in the basin, plug it in, and let it go for 5 to 10 minutes. Just be sure not to let your veggies get too mushy. My new obsession is steamed sweet potatoes.
5. Juicer. Our juicer is my favorite gift that we got for our wedding. If you’ve never had fresh homemade apple-carrot juice, you’re missing out. Homemade juice tastes amazing and it’s free of all the nasty preservatives and added sugar found in store-bought juice. Basic home juicers start around 50 bucks. If you’re on a special diet like the Gerson diet to help treat an advanced illness, it’s recommended you use a two-step juicer with a separate grinder and press to maximize nutrient extraction. Click here to learn more about Gerson-approved juicers.
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