Gift Giving Made Easy for your Trim and Healthy Mama
There are so many items that can be purchased as a gift for your loved ones who are on this journey. They range from small appliances to cookbooks to kitchen gadgets to pantry items. These are some of my very favorites appliances and accessories which help me prepare and cook meals for our family.
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Don’t rule out a small appliance as a gift. Some are more expensive than others but they have many benefits. They save time, energy and money in the long run. I have two all time favorites – the Instant Pot and a Vitamix but they are followed by a stick blender and a food processor.
The are a few different model Instant Pots but I have narrowed them down to three that work well with this journey. I love my DUO Plus, 9 in 1, 6 quart Instant Pot because it not only has a yogurt feature but I can adjust my pressure setting from high to low. I’ve been using mine for nearly two years, daily, without any issues. It also has lid holder handles which are super handy for the pot’s lid. All Instant Pots come standard with a stainless steel liner which is a huge plus for healthy cooking.
The DUO80, 7 in 1, 8 quart Instant Pot has the same features as the DUO60 but is larger and can use the same accessories with the exception of the sealing rings and additional liner. Both of these Instant Pots have the yogurt feature and many gals are finding that making their own yogurt not only tastes better but is cheaper as well. This is a great size for larger families or if you want to do bulk cooking to freeze. Now there is a new DUO Mini, 3 quart, 7 in 1 which is great for sides or for the RV.
The LUX60, 6 in 1, 6 quart Instant Pot works very well. It does not have the lid holders, adjustment to low pressure or the yogurt feature; but it may be more budget friendly. It is also available in the Lux 80, 6 in 1, 8 quart and the LUX Mini, 6 in 1, 3 quart.
Instant Pot Accessories
These are great accessories that can be used with all models. An extra stainless steel liner is very handy for cooking veggies while your roast or meats rest. For the slow cook feature we have found that the ceramic coated liner works great. The glass lid (available for 6 quart models) is great for using the slow cooker feature. The silicone cover for the liner is great for storing leftovers in the refrigerator. An extra sealing rings are nice to have on hand for either a ring replacement or for cooking plain rice or cheesecake. When it comes to sealing ring I highly recommend only purchasing the Instant Pot brand seals.
For vegetables and eggs a steamer basket is a great accessory. A steamer basket with silicone feet is great because it won’t scratch any type of liner.
A cheesecake pan, and yes, cheesecake cooked in the instant pot is very creamy and delicious. For a 6 quart Instant Pot I recommend either the 6 inch or 7 inch Fat Daddio cheesecake pan. For an 8 quart Instant Pot I recommend either the 7 inch or 8 inch Fat Daddio cheesecake pan. Another great accessory or pantry item are the Worthy Liners Parchment Paper Rounds for your cheesecake adventures. They are available in 6 inch, 7 inch and 8 inch sizes.
Homemade yogurt using the Instant Pot is incredibly economical and tastes so much better than store bought. I love my yogurt strainer which has made the straining into Greek style yogurt so much easier. Another great tool for yogurt making is a good instant read digital thermometer since the temperature for adding the starter is so important.
Cookbooks to Use with Your Instant Pot
I love my Trim Healthy Mama – Eat up and Slim Down cookbook and many of the recipes can be converted to slow cooking or pressure cooking. The new Trim Healthy Mama – Trim Healthy Table cookbook has a section featuring pressure cooker recipes! Great Food Fast, Bob Warden’s Ultimate Pressure Cooker Recipes has easy to follow directions and 90% of the recipes can be made to fit the THM plan. Jill Nussinow’s The New Fast Food: The Veggie Queen Pressure Cooks Whole Food Meals in Less than 30 Minutes has the best timing charts for rice, beans and veggies with many meals and sides that can be easily adapted to fir the THM plan.
Other Great Cookbooks Gifts
Here are two of my favorites with great recipes, great tips, beautiful photos and simple instructions. THe first is Necessary Food: Traditional Favorites Made Healthy from Briana Thomas’s Kitchen is filled with on plan recipes, beautiful photos and easy to follow directions. The second is The Everyday Ketogenic Kitchen: With More than 150 Inspirational Low-Carb, High-Fat Recipes to Maximize Your Health by Carolyn Ketchum. Carolyn’s recipes fit plan for S type meals and her baking tips are so worth the investment in this cookbook!
Blenders and Food Processors
Next picks for small appliances are the Vitamix, the Cuisinart Stick Blender and the Cuisinart Food Processor. The Vitamix is truly an investment but I love that they are still made in the USA and come with either a 5 (refurbished) or 7 year warranty. Vitamix also has outstanding customer service. I use mine daily for Trimmys (a type of Bullet-Proof Coffee), smoothies, food processing tasks like ricing cauliflower and chopping veggies or fruits. It will blend peanuts and almonds into nut butters. It will take left over veggies from the frig with some chicken or veggie stock and transform it into a hot and ready soup. These are just a few of the wonderful things you can make with a Vitamix. I highly recommend refurbished machines. They all come with a brand new container and are thoroughly tested and guaranteed. Their warranty is 5 years and may be extended.
The Cuisinart Stick Blender is a handy tool. It’s very handy to puree soups right in the pot or to stir sauces and gravies to a smooth consistency in a pot as well. It makes short work of homemade mayonnaise and salad dressings as well.
A Cuisinart Food Processor is the next best thing to a Vitamix. It will chop and puree as well as make nut butters. These tasks will take longer but I used one for years before I was blessed with my Vitamix.
With a wide bottom, low profile container Vitamix machine such as the 5300, Pro 750 or the 7500 having a 32 ounce wet container is a must for blending smaller batches. The mini tamper is also nice to have for the 32ounce container or the 48 ounce container since the large tamper is too long for these container. I also use the Vitamix Dry Grains container for grinding grains and making a homemade Gentle Sweet blend. Another great option for a container is the 48 ounce wet container. It has the narrow bottom, great for smaller batches and will fit under most cabinets while sitting on the base.
The Vitamix long handled spatulas come in a set of three. When selecting a silicone spatulas try to find ones that are at least 11 to 11 1/2 inches long. The Endurance Smoothie Spatula is super helpful for cleaning out the containers, short or tall!
The newest accessory for the Vitamix is the Vitamix Personal Cup and Adapter. This fits the legacy model machines. I love this adapter for blending small batch dressings and single service smoothies. IT’s super easy to clean as well.