Skip to main content

3 kitchen gadgets that actually make Thanksgiving dinner harder to put together

Thanksgiving dinner can be a glorious event if you pull everything off correctly. The planning, shopping, and actual cooking can be a lot to handle, and it can be tough to execute everything the way you picture it. Luckily, there are tons of kitchen gadgets designed to make your life in the kitchen easier. However, not all of them perform the way you’d like. Some cooking gadgets can actually make Thanksgiving dinner harder to prepare, adding unnecessary steps or creating more dishes to clean. Stay productive in the kitchen steer clear of these gadgets this Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving dinner ingredients.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Air fryer

Air fryers have been all the rage for a few years now — just long enough for people to realize that you don’t really need one. In fact, air fryers can make cooking for a large meal, like Thanksgiving dinner, more complicated than it has to be. For one, air fryers aren’t that much faster than cooking something the conventional way when making food for more than two people. This is because the air fryer doesn’t have enough space to cook enough food for a crowd, which means you will have to work in batches. It will take you just as long to cook all that food in batches as it would to use the oven and stove. (Not to mention the problem of keeping the first batches warm while you’re working on the next one.)

Air fryers also take up a ton of space that most people can’t spare during a large meal like Thanksgiving. Most households are struggling for enough space to put all of the food on holidays as it is, so adding extra countertop appliances is not a great idea. There is also a bit of a learning curve with air fryers, so unless you’re a seasoned vet with the small appliance, Thanksgiving dinner is probably not the best time to try and figure it out. You run the risk of under or overcooking a dish, and this could throw off your entire meal, which is the worst-case scenario.

Family gathered around Thanksgiving dinner.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Blenders

Blenders — at least decent ones — are expensive. Unless you make soups or smoothies regularly, a blender may not be a cost-effective buy for you. And while a good blender can be a worthwhile investment, cheap blenders aren’t really worth the hassle — and they’re definitely not worth it on a big day like Thanksgiving. You would think that a small appliance that can handle large quantities would be perfect for Thanksgiving dinner, but what will you use the blender for on Thanksgiving? Unless you’re serving soup as a starter, the most reasonable option would be gravy, and there certainly is no need to blend gravy in a blender. A whisk will do the trick just fine.

And, much like air fryers, blenders take up a lot of counter space. They’re also a pain to clean. Sure, most blender parts are dishwasher safe, but you have to break them down and put them back together after each use. Also, since most blenders are relatively large, they really aren’t helpful unless you make larger batches of things.

Bread makers

Bread makers are small appliances that also fall into the “takes up way too much counter space” category. Unless you and your family eat a loaf of bread every few days, do you really need a bread machine taking up all of that space? Again, counter space is at a premium during large meals like Thanksgiving dinner, so a bread maker on the counter is the last thing you need. Also, break makers only make one loaf of bread at a time. Unless you want to start making bread days before Thanksgiving, a bread machine isn’t going to do you much good. And besides, isn’t the best part of homemade bread the fact that you can eat the bread while it’s still warm? Baking a few loaves traditionally will give you fresh-out-of-the-oven warm bread for dinner, while a bread maker will only do that for one loaf.

Bread makers are also notorious for producing inconsistent loaves. Not that every loaf on your dinner table has to be perfect, but it may take you a while to dial in exactly what methods produce the best results. So unless you have perfected your bread maker method, you may end up serving your guests bread that is less than desirable. On days like Thanksgiving, the oven will be a more reliable appliance.

Woman and child basting Thanksgiving turkey.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Preparing Thanksgiving dinner can be a time-consuming activity that requires multitasking and efficiency. As with all tasks, sometimes gadgets can make a job easier and save you time, but other times they may just slow you down. Single-use gadgets that are challenging to store or difficult to use may not be worth the investment in the long run. Learning to use a new device may, in fact, take more time than doing it the old-fashioned way. And, after all, Thanksgiving is for traditions, right?

Editors' Recommendations

Kelly Kaliszewski
Kelly's work has appeared in blogs and on websites. When she's not writing, she is playing with her two dogs, cooking, or…
This 3-ingredient peanut butter cookie recipe is insanely good
You can make these easy peanut butter cookies even with the kids
Homemade peanut butter cookies on a baking sheet

Although peanut butter itself was first made by the Inca hundreds of years ago, it wasn’t until the early 1900s that peanut butter became an ingredient for cookies. These cookies were met with so much acclaim in the United States that they now have an official holiday: National Peanut Butter Cookie Day is celebrated each year on June 12th.

As one of the easier classic cookies to make, even the most complicated peanut butter cookie has only a handful of ingredients. But, for novice bakers or those baking with younger kids, sometimes even a handful of ingredients can be too many. That’s why we went on the hunt for a super easy — yet really yummy — cookie recipe that virtually anyone can make. With just three ingredients, you can create the most delectable dessert, starring everyone’s favorite nut butter spread. Here's how to make the best 3-ingredient peanut butter cookies.

Read more
Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about making delicious vegan spring rolls
Serve tasty vegan spring rolls with this handy guide
vegan roll

Also known as summer rolls (perhaps due to the season's abundance of crunchy veggies and other fresh ingredients), spring rolls originated in Vietnam. Variations of the original spring roll (which usually includes a cold protein, oftentimes shrimp) are found in many other Asian cuisines and on restaurant and takeout menus everywhere.

If you practice a vegan diet, summer rolls can be a tasty, low-calorie addition to your meals and are easier to make than you may have thought. We’d recommend taking a few moments to read through the recipe directions a time or two before you begin, and be prepared for a few rolling mishaps before you perfect the skill. With a little bit of practice, you can master the art of filling those rice paper wrappers with a mountain of fresh, crunchy fillings for the perfect starter course or quick and nutritious lunch.

Read more
How to make perfect rice in the Instant Pot – every time
The best tips and tricks for cooking with your Instant Pot
Instant Pot on a table

We all know that an Instant Pot can be a lifesaver in the kitchen. On those days when you really don't feel like cooking, but also don't want to waste money on high-calorie takeout, you can always depend on your trusty Instant Pot. It's a pressure cooker, slow cooker, saute pan, steamer, and even a yogurt maker, but the best feature of an Instant Pot is its ability to speed up cooking time.

Wondering how to cook Instant Pot rice? Cooking rice, regardless of the method, still requires a little skill to reach the right texture that's perfectly sticky and tender. So what's the secret to making perfect rice every time, especially with a high-powered machine like the Instant Pot? Stick with us as we walk through the best Instant Pot rice cooking trade secrets, starting with our go-to rice recipe. Your family will rave about your Instant Pot cooking — we promise.

Read more