Entering my junior year of college, I was very excited because I was able to say goodbye to the dining hall on campus, and hello to a kitchen in my townhouse apartment. I was used to cooking some meals at home and thought the process would be similar once I was on my own at school.

Little did I know, those weird tools and gadgets around my kitchen made my cooking process much easier. I found myself making many SOS calls to my mom with questions on food prep and how to get by with the tools I didn't have. 

Garlic Peeler

Convenient Soft Resin Tube Shaped Reusable Magic Handheld Rolling Garlic Peeler Kitchen Tools

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My mom got this little tool at a state fair one year and I would buy one for every person I knew if I could. I’ve always been a fresh garlic lover until I got to school this year and realized how difficult it is to peel garlic. It takes me forever to fight that garlic peel and my hands smell like garlic for hours after cooking

But, with the simple garlic peeler, you pop the garlic clove into the tube, roll it on the counter, and dump out your freshly peeled garlic like magic. It takes 10 seconds and you don’t even have to touch anything. These plastic tubes are less than $5 so I should probably just go out and buy one instead of complaining about not having one.

Garlic Press

In Defense of the Press

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My second most hated task is chopping garlic, which I barely knew how to do until I arrived at school this year. How do you chop such a small object? Once you’ve wrestled the skin off the garlic now you need to mince it into tiny pieces? That means more touching of the garlic.

My mom comes to the rescue with this one as well. A garlic-crusher just minces the garlic for you in seconds. Before I came back to school, I would peel and mince my garlic before you could even complain about the process of garlic prep. 

Can Opener

Kitchen Tools

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This might look like any old can opener, but it's different I swear. I'm sure we all have a can opener in our house (I think I have 3). But, nothing beats the can opener that I have back home. This kitchen tool somehow re-opens the can without cutting into the metal. Which means you don't need to stick your finger or a knife into the cut can risking slicing your finger open.

A smooth edge can opener will solve all your fears about losing a finger since it cuts from the side of the can. I must admit it is a little tricky to use at first but once you figure it out, it makes opening cans so much easier and less dangerous. 

Fancy Wine Opener

The Vertical Rabbit Corkscrew - Best Sellers

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I find myself really struggling to open a bottle of wine with those little cork screw openers. My wine-loving mother has the easiest wine opener in our kitchen. The Rabbit Vertical Corkscrew will have your bottle of wine opened in seconds. You put this tool over the bottle, push a lever down, then pull it up and viola! You've got yourself an open bottle. Plus, science says that wine is actually really good for you, so why not crack open a bottle or two?

Scrub Daddy

Scrub Daddy

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Boy do I miss not having to wash every single dish by hand. The old fashion sponge and dish soap gets old very quickly when you're in a rush. A Scrub Daddy from Shark Tank makes it easier to clean your dishes. When you run it under hot water, it turns soft to wash regular dishes. But when you run it under cold water, it stays firm to scrub away tough spots in your dishes. These sponges are just about everywhere right now and are under $5. Plus, you always have someone smiling back at you when you use one of these. 

Most of these items weren't really anything I thought about until I started cooking on my own. But now that I'm cooking without them, I'm missing them a great deal. Start searching kitchen tools on the Internet and you'll be amazed at the items you don't have, but totally should. Keep your kitchen stocked and make cooking a breeze.