21 Recipes to Make With Your Newly Gifted Gear

A white ceramic dish holding pan-roasted chicken and vegetables in jus.
Serious Eats / Mariel De La Cruz

Coming out of the holiday season and into the New Year, you may find yourself with one (or a few!) new pieces of kitchen gear, thanks to Santa or the Holiday Armadillo. While a new piece of equipment is exciting, you might be scratching your head and wondering where to start with it. If you were gifted an immersion or high-speed blender, you're well equipped to turn out soups, hummus, and or sweet treats like pistachio cream. A sous vide machine is not only essential for cooking juicy meat dishes, but can also excel at other tasks like making vegetables or even a homemade vanilla extract. Stand mixers are good for a variety of tasks, like whipping up desserts and breads. If there's one piece of equipment that truly covers the realm of both sweet and savory dishes, it's the cast iron skillet. A trusty pressure cooker is great for cutting down on cook time for a number of dishes like chili and risotto. And finally, a mortar and pestle will help you on your way to making all the sauces, pastes, and dips your heart desires.

We've rounded up 21 recipes to use if you've found yourself with one of these shiny new pieces of kitchen equipment. Time to get cooking!

Immersion Blender

Homemade Pistachio Cream

Vicky Wasik

An immersion blender makes this nutty, pale green whipped cream thick and stable.

Two-Minute Mayonnaise

Two-minute mayonnaise in a serving bowl with a spoon, with an open face tomato sandwich on the right edge of the frame
Diana Chistruga

Using an immersion blender, you end up with a cup full of creamy, perfectly emulsified, real-deal, better-than-anything-you-can-buy mayonnaise.

Thick and Creamy Tomato Soup

Vicky Wasik

Stella's take on the famous Nordstrom's tomato basil soup uses carrot purée and just a splash of cream to create a thick, hearty, and warming meal.

Sous Vide Machine

Sous Vide Buffalo Chicken Wings

Photographs: Joel Russo. Video: Serious Eats Team

Cooking chicken wings sous vide allows you to get perfectly cooked meat that's supremely juicy.

Sous Vide Glazed Carrots

A round white porcelain plate holding multi-colored sous vide glazed carrots. The plate is on a dark blue textured surface and there is a small white bowl holding chopped parsley in the top left corner of the image.
Serious Eats / Eric Kleinberg

Sous vide carrots are intensely flavorful and perfectly cooked—every time.

Homemade Vanilla Extract

A single jar of vanilla extract
Serious Eats / Amanda Suarez

We tested and found that this homemade vanilla extract is better (and cheaper!) than store-bought.

Stand Mixer


Overhead view of sliced brioche loaf on a cutting board next to jam
Serious Eats / Debbie Wei

This classic brioche is airy and tender, with a deeply rich and buttery flavor thanks to a hands-off cold fermentation.

Creamy Whipped Greek Yogurt

Vicky Wasik

A light and fresh dessert that comes together easily with the help of a stand mixer.

One-Bowl, Overnight Cinnamon Rolls

Vicky Wasik

A lazy-weekend secret weapon that takes only one bowl and can be made in advance.

Cast Iron Skillet

Foolproof Pan Pizza

Serious Eats Team

A pan pizza recipe for those who love a thick and crispy crust that's golden on the bottom, but puffy and soft under the layers of sauce and mozzarella.

Pan-Roasted Chicken With Vegetables and Dijon Jus

A white ceramic dish holding pan-roasted chicken and vegetables in jus.
Serious Eats / Mariel De La Cruz

A serve-it-in-one-pan wonder that leaves no flavor behind.

Chocolate Skillet Cake With Milk Chocolate Frosting

Vicky Wasik

This chocolate cake topped with milk chocolate frosting couldn't be easier—it's made and baked right in a cast iron skillet.

Pressure Cooker

Pressure Cooker Tomato Sauce

J. Kenji López-Alt

The pressure cooker gives you a red sauce with all-day flavor on a weeknight schedule.

Pressure Cooker Chunky Beef and Bean Chili

Vicky Wasik

Unlike a lot of chili recipes that call for short cooking times but deliver terrible flavor, this classic chunky beef-and-bean recipe saves time the right way: by using a pressure cooker, not by cutting corners.

Pressure Cooker Mushroom Risotto

Finished and garnished mushroom risotto in a bowl with cheese and herbs on the periphery.
Serious Eats / Mariel De La Cruz

Creamy, intensely flavored mushroom risotto that's ready to eat in less time.

High-Speed Blender

Nigerian Masa (Fermented Rice Cake Balls)

Side view of Nigerian Masa stacked in a pyramid on a plate.
Serious Eats / Maureen Celestine

Crunchy fermented rice cakes—made by blending the batter and then baking—that can be served sweet or savory.

The Best Smooth Hummus

The best smooth hummus in a white round dish, with a piece of pita bread on the right hand side of the plate.
Serious Eats / Qi Ai

Puréeing garlic in lemon juice and blending chickpeas while they're hot produces hummus that's both smooth and flavorful.

The Best Potato-Leek Soup

Potato leek soup
Serious Eats / Eric Kleinberg

An easy potato-leek soup that takes no shortcuts to deliver the best flavor and texture possible.

Mortar and Pestle

The Best Pesto alla Genovese (Classic Basil Pesto Sauce)

Photographs and video: Vicky Wasik

Tradition says to use a mortar and pestle when making pesto, and in this case, tradition is right.

Prik Gaeng Khiao Waan (Thai Green Curry Paste)

green curry paste in a small bowl with prominent ingredients surrounding it
Vicky Wasik

Fresh green chiles are the key to this bright and balanced curry paste.

Nam Prik Ong (Thai Pork-and-Tomato Chile Dip)

Nam Prik Ong (Thai Pork and Tomato Chile Dip)

Ground pork, tomatoes, and dried chiles are the stars of this spicy-savory northern Thai dip.

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