Mother's Day Gift Ideas for Moms Who Like to Cook
These products can make time spent in the kitchen even more enjoyable
We realize it's not just a mom's job to cook, but what if she enjoys it? Some women love to experiment with new techniques and recipes. Others would rather curl up with a cup of coffee.
So after cooking her brunch or making dinner reservations at one of her favorite spots, give some thought to the things that will make her time in the kitchen more enjoyable in the months and years to come.
Below, some ideas from Consumer Reports’ tests, whether she loves to whip up meals with fresh ingredients or prefers fuss-free meal prep.
CR's take: Thanks to its superb performance chopping onions, slicing celery, shredding cheese and carrots, and grating Parmesan cheese, the Breville Sous Chef BFP800XL/A is a top food processor for making hearty dips and chopping raw ingredients. And it’s surprisingly quiet. It can hold as much as 16 cups but also has a convenient mini-bowl attachment for smaller batches.
CR's take: One of our top-scoring blenders, the Vitamix 5200 can turn whole fruits and vegetables into a smooth, creamy juice in just a minute. In our tests, we used apple, carrot, orange, pineapple, ice, and water. This versatile blender scored Excellent in CR's puréeing test and is one of the few models we've tested that can make hot soup.
CR's take: When mom is ready to relax with a warm or cold beverage, it's nice to have options. Ninja recently one-upped its flagship Bar Brewer with the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System CP307. The new model adds the ability to brew tea and cold brew coffee, and it has a built-in milk frother. We found that it brews cold brew in about 15 minutes, and it comes out lukewarm, not cold. Our expert taste tester said it makes good iced coffee, but it doesn’t taste like true cold brew. This Ninja does quite well across our other tests; its brew performance isn’t as good as the Ninja Bar Brewer, but its carafe handles better. If you want the extras of a built-in milk frother, cold brew, and tea brewing, then go for this machine.
CR's take: The 6.5-quart Ninja Foodi OP302 has a pressure-cook function, and it’s the only model in our multi-cooker ratings to garner an Excellent rating in sautéing. Plus, the extended feature set is unique. This 1,460-watt cooker has a pressure lid, plus a separate crisping lid that’s hinged to the pot. The crisping lid houses a fan that facilitates air-frying and can crisp pressure-cooked food. We pressure-cooked a 4½-pound chicken in 35 minutes, then crisped it, and the result was a beautifully browned bird. Air-fried french fries and chicken nuggets were delicious.
CR's take: For the home chef who's interested in trying sous vide cooking—but wants a machine that does more than just that—the 6-quart Instant Pot Max could be a good option: Not only does it include multi-cooker features like pressure cooking, sautéing, and rice cooking but it also has a sous vide setting. To test that feature, we cooked chicken breasts for 3 hours; they were tender and delicious.
CR's take: The funny thing about air fryers is they don’t actually fry your food. These countertop convection ovens rely on a fan to circulate hot air so that you can cook with little or no oil. With a 5.8-quart capacity, the high-performing Nu-Wave 6-Quart 37001 is the largest we tested. Our experts found that its electronic controls with preprogrammed settings were easy to see and use. The inside and outside of this device are a cinch to clean, but cleaning the food out of the holes in the basket is a little tricky.