Real women share: My favorite life-simplifying appliance

Sep 4, 2012 at 4:53 a.m. ET

What would our lives be like without the modern conveniences of handy kitchen gadgets? Real women chime in on their favorite, can't-live-without-it, life-simplifying appliance.

woman loading dishwasher
Tip: Use your food chopper to chop up candy for sundaes.

Kate's food chopper

I don't enjoy cooking, but I didn't want to sentence my family to a life of boxed or frozen dinners. My world changed when I received an electric food chopper as a gift. I actually looked for things to chop, mince and dice!

I use my food chopper to cook and bake. It takes almost no time at all to cut up veggies for soup or nuts for brownies. Honestly, I don't know what I would do without it. ~Kate

Tip: A dozen eggs plus an electric roaster equals baked custard.

Angela's electric roaster

My electric roaster oven makes life so much easier! I've used it for everything from roasting a turkey to making large batches of chili to baking a cake.

It's efficient and uses electricity instead of the propane our stove uses. The far, far less appealing alternative to it is heating up my kitchen with the real oven. Plus, I hate getting on the floor to light the pilot on the oven. It makes the cat think I'm her personal yoga mat.  ~Angela

Tip: Pressure cookers are great for beans, grains... even boiled nuts.

Cheryl's pressure cooker

I use my pressure cooker for family meals. It makes sauces taste like they were simmering all day – chicken alfredo is my daughter's favorite. ~Cheryl

Tip: Use the dishwasher to clean baseball caps, garden tools and bath toys!

Nancy's dishwasher

I'm a bit of a cleaning fanatic — I even dry my kitchen sink after using the water! My all-time cleaning pet peeve is dirty dishes. I don't like seeing them lying around the house, and I detest having them in my sparkling clean sink.

My family is pretty good about putting their dishes in the dishwasher. They don't always put them in the way I would, but I'm getting over it. To me, the dishwasher brings happiness and peace of mind. ~Nancy

Tip:Hand mixers are great for whipping up lump-free mashed potatoes.

Penny's hand mixer

I love to bake. I bake for the kids, for school fundraisers and for the church. A lot of bakers like big stand mixers, but I definitely prefer my lightweight, portable hand mixers. (I even have several of them as "backups" that I've picked up at yard sales!) ~Penny

Elizabeth's microwave

My life-simplifying appliance? The microwave. We're a takeout family. ~Elizabeth

Fun fact

Did you know your microwave can be used to disinfect a kitchen sponge?

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