Stock up on all of these handy cooking gadgets to stay on track with your healthy meal plans.
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Sticking to a healthy eating plan can be tough. Of course, stopping at the drive-thru after work is fine occasionally, but it's totally possible to prepare quick, healthy, delicious food at home. Whether you're following a meal plan for special dietary needs or just trying to prepare better-for-you meals everyone in the family will love, there are a few healthy food gadgets that can help you navigate your healthy eating journey. Our food editors and Test Kitchen pros will help set up your kitchen for healthy cooking success. These kitchen items for $10 or less are a great starting point for adding fresh flavors to ho-hum dishes and maintaining proper portions to ensure you're getting the right amount of nutrients every day.

silver food scale
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Digital Scale

Get a grasp on what proper portion sizes are with an easy-to-use kitchen scale. "You may be amazed how small a serving of cereal, chips, etc. actually is," says Sheena Chihak, RD and digital food editor at Better Homes & Gardens. "You’ll know exactly how much you’re putting into your body because we’re often not very good at eyeballing it."

Buy It: CROWNFUL Digital Food Scale ($10, Amazon)

red kitchen shears
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Kitchen Shears

Kitchen shears are nice to snip herbs for a low-calorie flavor boost. Try them for speeding up green onion slicing, trimming artichokes, and de-stemming strawberries, too. They'll also come in handy for breaking down whole chickens.

Buy It: KitchenAid All-Purpose Shears with Protective Sheath ($10, Amazon)

joseph joseph citrus reamer
Credit: Courtesy of Bed Bath & Beyond

Citrus Reamer

Add fresh citrus juice to salsas, vinaigrettes, and seafood for a pop of refreshing flavor. "Research shows adding fresh lemon juice to recipes can help you use less salt," says Caitlyn Diimig, RD and food editor. "This reamer catches pulp and seeds easily so you only end up with juice."

Buy It: Joseph Joseph Catcher Citrus Reamer ($8, Bed Bath & Beyond)

OXO Vegetable Peeler
Credit: Photo courtesy of Amazon

Vegetable Peeler

“Vegetable peelers are great for making ribbon salads and preparing vibrant salad fixings,” says Colleen Weeden from the Better Homes & Gardens Test Kitchen. With a convenient swivel head, this healthy food gadget can easily make the turn through rounded squash and spud edges. Its non-slip grip means you can go straight from washing to preparing your produce without reaching for a towel.

Buy It: OXO Good Grips Swivel Peeler ($10, Amazon)

pink meal planner pad
Credit: Courtesy of Target

Meal Planner Pad

Having a healthy meal plan for the week makes it much easier to make smart food choices. "No need to come up with ideas when you’re already hungry and more likely to succumb to fast food or unhealthy choices," Chihak says. "And if plans change and you do end up unexpectedly going out to dinner with a friend (or for a date night), just move that night’s dinner to next week."

Buy It: Weekly Meal Planner Pad ($10, Target)

nesting measuring spoons
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Measuring Spoons

Did you know the recommended daily intake of sodium per day equals about 1 teaspoon of table salt? Use measuring spoons to season your recipes and to keep tabs on added oils, salt, and sugar in dressings. “Streamline your tool drawer with measuring spoons that nest together,” says Lynn Blanchard, Better Homes & Gardens Test Kitchen director.

Buy It: Magnetic Measuring Spoons Set of 8 ($10, Amazon)

taylor meat thermometer
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Digital Instant Read Thermometer

Rather than buying rotisserie chicken or other takeout meats, cook your own poultry, fish, pork, or steak to perfection (while controlling the additives and fat). Not only is it important that food is cooked to a proper temperature to prevent food-borne illness, but Diimig points out using a thermometer also ensures "you don’t overcook meat and end up with rubbery chicken or hockey pucks for burgers." Our Test Kitchen swears by a digital option for easy-to-read, quick, and accurate results.

Buy It: Taylor Precision Products Waterproof Digital Instant Read Thermometer ($10, Amazon)

Microplane

Citrus zest can add refreshing zing—and next to no calories—to many dishes. Add a sturdy microplane to your healthy food gadget drawer to zest, create tiny ribbons of cheese, grate ginger for a warm drink, or top desserts with a sensible yet satisfying amount of chocolate shavings.

Buy It: Stainless Steel Cheese and Citrus Zester Grater ($8, Amazon)

anchor hocking measuring cup
Credit: Courtesy of Walmart

Glass Measuring Cup

Proper portion size is clutch if you’re counting calories. Measure ingredients for baking, sauces, or dressings in this sturdy, dishwasher-safe cup. For a sensible splurge, fill the measuring cup with dark chocolate and coconut oil, then microwave at 50% power until melted. Voila: A DIY chocolate shell to pour over sliced fruit for a healthy dessert.

Buy It: Anchor Hocking Glass Measuring Cup ($5, Walmart)

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