6 Tips for Buying Kitchen Appliances

With my French and Italian ancestry, a love of cooking is in my blood. In fact, some of my fondest memories are of helping my mom slice apples for a tarte Tatin, and of working between my aunt and my grandmother on the Thanksgiving dinner assembly line.

So when I finally had the opportunity to remodel my own kitchen, the appliance selection process was the most time-consuming part. After all, there’s no point in spending hours brining and searing a roast if your oven won’t cook it properly. Along the way there were six questions that were especially tough to solve. But I eventually found the answers.

Do I really need a double oven?

If you like to bake or entertain, then yes, a double oven is a worthwhile investment. But if you have a small family and don’t have people over very often, you can likely make do with a single oven and a microwave convection oven.

Will I ever use a warming drawer?

Does the sun rise in the east? Yes, you will use a warming drawer! You’ll use it to warm plates before serving family-style sides. You’ll use it to keep the kids’ omelets hot when they take forever to shower in the morning.

In our house, however, space was a challenge, and a warming drawer didn’t make sense. I solved the problem by choosing a large microwave with a keep-warm function. So I can still keep a dish of lasagna hot without burning the cheese even when both my ovens are hard at work.

I don’t have enough space for a side-by-side fridge.

I love to prepare large meals ahead of time and freeze them, so I nearly had a heart attack when I discovered that our space wouldn’t accommodate the side-by-side fridge I’d been dreaming of.

Our solution came in the form of a pair of freezer drawers in our kitchen island. They aren’t as deep as the drawer on a bottom-mounted freezer-refrigerator unit, but pairing them up means that I have ample space for all of my gallon bags of homemade chicken broth and giant balls of cookie dough.

side by side fridge