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5 Kitchen essentials to enhance your single life

Kendra Y. Mims is a full-time writer in the Chicagoland area. When she is not writing articles on health, home, living, travel and fitness for online and print publications, she can be found writing fiction or with her head in a good boo...

5 kitchen essentials

Attention all single ladies: While your single life provides you with options and time to eat out with the girls at your favorite restaurant, enjoy a night out on the town being wined and dined, or kick up your feet to relax and order takeout on days you don’t feel inspired to cook, you can also use your solo time to innovate your kitchen. Whipping up an appetizing smoothie or meal on the days you feel motivated to cook doesn’t have to be a time-consuming or complex experience. Whether you’re a single lady with a demanding career or a full social calendar that keeps you on the go, the following five kitchen items will make your time in the kitchen convenient, tasty and, most important, healthy.

Woman with blender1. BLENDER

Nothing screams quick, healthy and delicious in the kitchen like a blender. You can have a tasty, filling treat in five minutes or less. Start your day off with a smoothie or a protein shake. Load up on your favorite fruit, add yogurt, toss in a handful of ice chips, and some orange juice or V8 Fusion to create the perfect taste. For dessert, treat yourself to a low-fat milkshake using low-fat yogurt or low-fat ice cream, fresh fruit, and just enough low-fat milk or soymilk to give you your desired consistency. You can head out the door satisfied and guilt-free after whipping up a nutritious delight.

2. SLOW COOKER

Slow cooker meals are time-savers in the kitchen. With the vast array of slow cooker recipes, you can make chili, soup, stew, beans and meat dishes as well as compotes, puddings and other warm desserts without a lot of preparation. Simply toss your food into the slow cooker in the morning before work or before you run your errands. Depending on your heat setting you'll have a hearty meal in four to eight hours. Make recipes that are low in fat and high in veggies, fruits and whole grains. Since the slow cooker does the cooking, it gives you more time to relax, meet with your friends, head to the gym and get through your work day stress-free.

3. GEORGE FOREMAN GRILL

Craving a burger or chicken breast sandwich but not excited about turning on the oven or going to the drive-thru? The George Foreman Grill is an easy – and healthier – solution. The grill cooks burgers, poultry, fish, vegetables and even fruit in mere minutes. Best yet, it's specially designed to drain off extra grease and fat into a drip tray, leaving you with juicy, delicious diet-friendly foods. As a bonus, the nonstick surface makes clean up a breeze. This kitchen essential is also space-efficient for small kitchens, and can be kept on your countertop for quick access.

4. MINI CHOPPER

With a mini chopper, you can say good-bye to the extra time it takes to manually chop fruits, vegetables and herbs for your favorite dishes. From aromatic ingredients, such as onion, garlic and parsley for soups and stews, to crisp vegetables, fruits and nuts for salads, a mini chopper can help you get your daily recommended vegetable servings with ease. Mini choppers also make quick work of salsa, dips and other condiments, giving you the perfect inspiration to invite your friends over for a chip and dip party.

5. Single girl's COOKBOOK

The kitchen would not be complete without a practical, handy cookbook that gives you recipes that demonstrate the simplicity and healthy side of cooking. The Little Black Apron: A Single Girl's Guide to Cooking with Style and Grace by Jodi Citrin, Melissa Gibson, and Katie Nuanes focuses on intertwining the single life with cooking, and turns it into a witty, fun, easy, and health-conscious experience. Packed with healthy recipes that both kitchen novices and seasoned cooks can enjoy, The Little Black Apron can be your go-to guide for sensible everyday meals.

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