Love to cook? Looking to take your gourmet kitchen to the next level affordably? Here are six simple solutions for lazy gourmet cooks.


Don’t feel like scrubbing the sauté pan after cooking those chicken breasts? Take advantage of the flavor opportunity by adding some butter, lemon juice or white wine and a tad of corn starch and water whisked together. Include a few secret ingredients, and use a flat edged spoon or spatula to loosen the crunchy bits while the sauce starts bubbling and thickening over the heat. Presto, a restaurant quality sauce without dirtying any extra pans.

Bar Spouts

I love these. Not only are they great for cooking wine, or having the rum on tap for various flaming fruit desserts, but having them tucked in the tops of your various oil and vinegar bottles makes cooking on the fly a breeze.

Towel Bars

The space between the top cupboards and the countertop is chronically underutilized. Mounting bars away from the wall space is a great way to have a place to hang items with handles. Items like measuring cups, apple corers and hand-held sifters to name a few. I got mine at Ikea. They’re black wrought iron, but I’ve seen them in brushed steel as well.

Canning Jars

I love canning jars.  I love them in every size they come in. I love the regular width. I love the wide mouth width. I. Love them. They work for storing bulk gourmet ingredients, drinking out of, and mixing corn starch and water for sauce thickening.

They also work well as a blender hack. Just screw them onto the blade base instead of the carafe and blend away with dips, spice blends, etc. Then, remove the base and turn the jar upside right with the base still attached. Unscrew the blade base and add the jar lid. This saves a ton of blender clean up time, and has the dish already in place to store the extras of whatever you’re cooking in the fridge or cupboard.


Hang ’em on the towel bars above the counter top, off the pot rack or even off the sides of your industrial shelving. They are great for tools, baskets, pans, hard to store items with handles, garlic ropes, pepper wreaths, whatever.


Need to label a bunch of jars? Not wanting the ragged look of torn masking tape and fine tipped marker scribbled in a hurry? P-Touch labels keep the DIY affordable, but offer a more unified look.

Magnetic Knife Bars

We have two. They are great for steak knife storage, and keep them from getting nicked in the drawer. They also take up absolutely no counter space like those bulky wooden knife blocks. If you have an Ikea, great. If not, they are available online.

For other ideas on frugal food and kitchen organizing, check out our posts on bulk buying, freezer savings, assembly cooking and meat money. Got another simple solution for lazy gourmets? Sound off below.