Top 10 bargains worth hunting for

A little while ago, I posted the top 10 kitchen tools worth investing in. Now, here are the ten must have kitchen tool bargains.

  1. Glass jars and containers. Pyrex now makes glass containers with sealing lids that are great for leftovers and for packing lunch for work or school. The containers are also oven and microwave safe unlike plastic. I see these on sale all the time at Canadian Tire. And whenever you come across a nice glass container (pickle jar, almond butter jar, etc.), wash it and reuse it! I have a cupboard full with nuts, seeds, bulk flours and more. Lots of people also get rid of their old glass cookie or pasta jars at garage sales.
  2. Measuring cups and spoons. Again, I see these all the time at garage sales. You can pick up a nice set for pennies.
  3. Mixing bowls. I think everyone’s mother has one a set of Corningware nesting mixing bowls – you know the ceramic ones in white or creamy colours with flowers on the side. This is another great garage sale find, but you can also find simple stainless steel ones for about $10 per set of 3. Opt for ceramic or stainless steel (unless you have young children and are worried about breakage).
  4. Salad spinners. Yet another common garage sale find. I guess people start eating salads and give up? Just be sure to give it a “spin” before you buy it to make sure it’s comfortable to use. These also aren’t too expensive in stores.
  5. Tea towels. For some reason, I’ve found the cheaper the tea towel, the more absorbent it is. This is a good dollar store find.
  6. Wooden spoons. Another dollar store find, and frequent flyer item.
  7. Ziploc bags. I found a 4-pack of Ziploc bags once at Loblaws for really, really cheap. I bought two packs, and I still have some in my basement… five years later. These are great for separating and freezing your big batches of stews, chilis, rice and veggies so they’re ready for a quick meal on your busy days. Freeze your items flat in the bags so they defrost easily.
  8. Foil and parchment paper. In my experience, there really is no noticeable difference between brands, so look for the best deal. Just pay attention to the cost per centimetre / inch, and not just the listed price.
  9. Specialty cake pans. For the very rare occasion that you use these, I recommend renting versus buying. Bulk Barn rents cake pans for $2/day. So unless you want think your kid’s going to want the same Disney cake for 10 years – rent!
  10. Gluten-free flours. Once you’ve learned a few simple substitution rules like the ones I teach in my book, it will be much, much, much cheaper to make your own cakes from plain gluten-free flours as opposed to mixes. Plus, you’ll be able to cut out the sugar, corn, potato and any other foods you may be avoiding. I buy my flours in bulk from Kinnikinnick. Bob’s Redmill also offers a great selection of flours that are readily available at most grocery stores. See my earlier post for more shopping tips.

There you have it! A few good bargains worth hunting for that will save you a bundle and help you setup a functional and healthy kitchen.

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