Equipping a vegetarian kitchen

August 10th, 2015

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Equipping a vegetarian kitchen

Going vegetarian is widely acknowledged to be a Good Thing, both in terms of ethics and health.

But going vegetarian isn’t as simple as just giving up meat – it also means getting creative when you’re cooking.

For example, removing the steak from a meal of steak, chips and salad isn’t going to leave you with a satisfying vegetarian meal.

800px-Veggie_Tacos source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Veggie_Tacos.jpgsource: Siddhantsahni28 on Wikimedia Commons

Making healthy and delicious vegetarian dishes means learning to prepare and cook food in whole different ways to meat-based recipes, and may necessitate a rethink in how your kitchen has been set up.

Here are a few appliances that are handy for sorting out many vegetarian recipes:


A big part of vegetarian and vegan cooking involves combining different plant-based ingredients into substitutes for animal products.

A good blender is useful for combining different ingredients, and can even reduce them to the consistency of a smoothie.

Fridge with a humidity-controlled veggie crisper

Most traditional fridges contain a vegetable crisper drawer somewhere towards their base. In homes where veggie consumption can be a bit lax, these are often the places where fresh produce goes to be forgotten about, wilt and eventually be thrown out.

But if you’re making a commitment to the vegtarian lifestyle, you’ll likely get a lot more use out of your veggie crisper.

528L Samsung 3 Door Fridge SRF527DSLS

You’ll want to make sure that your fridge’s drawer (or drawers) is large enough to securely hold your supply of fruit and veg, and that it will maintain the best conditions for keeping your produce fresh.

The best crisper drawers include an adjustable humidity setting, allowing you to set the best conditions for keeping your ingredients ready to eat for longer. Different items prefer different humidity levels on a case by case basis, but broadly you want to set a low humidity for fruits that will eventually rot, and a high humidity to prevent leafy vegetables from wilting.

Food processor

When you no longer have meat hogging the spotlight, you’ll have to put a lot more time and effort into preparing your veggies.  While it doesn’t take long to chop and slice up a couple of carrots or lettuce leaves as a side accompaniment to a meaty meal, basing your entire dish around these sorts of ingredients may require a bit more work.

A food processor can annihilate a bag of carrots or a head of lettuce in a matter of seconds rather than minutes, so you can spend more time and energy getting creative in the kitchen and less time on the laborious process of chopping.


While going vego may require a bit of time and willpower before you’re used to it, it can also be an excellent excuse to bake a lot of cakes (not that anyone really needs an excuse…).

The crisp, dry heat of an electric oven or stove is ideal for baking, ensuring that crusts stay crispy and fillings stay fluffy on your baked treats.

And of course there’s always veggie pizzas, quiches, and more…

Cooktop with wok burner

Vegetarian cuisine plays a significant role in the culinary traditions of several Asian cultures, partially due to the influence of some branches of Buddhism.

A sturdy wok is great for preparing vegetarian stir-fries and other similar meals, but their large size means they require a powerful heat source.

Several models of gas, electric and induction cooktops incorporate an extra-large burner or hotplate that’s perfect for wok cooking, meaning you can give your veggie cooking some spice and flair.

Remember that in order to cook on an induction cooktop, your cookware will need to be in contact with the cooking surface. You can either use a flat-bottomed wok made of induction-friendly metal, or, as pictured above, add an induction-compatible wok ring accessory to heat up a round-bottomed wok.


Steaming vegetables helps to lock in their nutrients, keeping them from getting all limp and soggy.

You can use a saucepan with a steamer attachment or a traditional bamboo steamer, heating it up on the cooktop, but dedicated steamer appliances are also available for if you steam regularly.  While you may not think you’d get a lot of use out of one of these specialised appliances, once you have one in your kitchen you may find yourself using it more than you expected…


Fruit and vegetable juice is delicious and good for you!  Making it fresh rather than buying it bottled means there can be more nutrients and fewer preservatives and additives in the final product.

With a cold press juicer, you’ll keep the maximum amount of nutritious enzymes, minerals and vitamins in your juice, so your vegetarian diet will be even healthier.

Ice cream maker

Who said that vegos have no fun? Though I think the original line was “you don’t win friends with salad!”

Getting a batch of your favourite berries or nuts and combining it with some cream and sugar in an ice-cream maker can produce a dessert that no store-bought ice-cream can match.

Even vegans don’t have to give up this pleasure altogether – vegan ice cream is a real thing, and it can be easily prepared with the right ingredients and settings. Just check out the recipe in the manual of the pictured Sunbeam Gelateria.

Rice cooker

Remember those veggie stir-fries we mentioned earlier? What better accompaniment is there to a good stir fry than some nice rice?  Even if you add just a touch of flavour to your rice, it can really change things up and become a key part of any meal.

A good rice cooker is just what you need to easily prepare large amounts of rice in a short period of time. The best rice cookers aren’t limited to just rice, either – some models can even prepare jam, cakes, and stews, all of which can be prepared in a vegetarian style.

Are you thinking of going vegetarian? Have you already made the switch? And what changes were there to the way you used your kitchen?

Mark joined Appliances Online in November 2011 and has since learned more than he ever expected to know about appliances. He enjoys looking for new and unusual ways for to solve everyday problems using typical household appliances. When he’s not toiling at the desks of Appliances Online and Big Brown Box, he tries to find time to write the next big bestseller and draw satirical cartoons, but is too easily distracted by TV, music and video games. Mark’s favourite appliance is the Dyson Groom Tool, as he loves the concept of vacuuming your dog. Google+

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