7 ingenious makes use of on your kitchen tongs apart from flipping food-CNET

7 ingenious uses for your kitchen tongs other than flipping food-CNET

Citrus, meet silicone-tipped kitchen tongs.


Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

I believed I knew of all of the methods I might use my kitchen tongs. In my kitchen, that meant flipping deeply seared meat within the pan or thick pucks of zucchini or tofu I prefer to let flip golden on one aspect, undisturbed, earlier than turning them to brown on the opposite. However since I have been consuming out at eating places much less continuously and opting to cook dinner at dwelling, I’ve discovered that my tongs (a trusty pair of silicone-tipped kitchen tongs can do much more for me than simply flipping tasty meals. 

Possibly you are a kitchen whiz and also you knew these all alongside, however for this novice cook dinner, discovering new methods to place a set of tongs to work makes me really feel like a hero in my own residence. As soon as I found a number of new makes use of of my very own, I seemed for extra ideas on-line, and now I am utilizing these, too.

Reaching objects on the highest shelf

At 5 toes 3 inches, it is truthful to say I am shorter than the common bear, however extra importantly, I hold sure lesser used kitchen elements, like packages of dried tangerine peel and chipotle chiles, in a prime cupboard. I can attain the entrance from the prime of a folding step stool, however typically the objects I want are within the again. 

The lengthy attain of a 9- or 12-inch pair of kitchen tongs will get me what I want — particularly unfastened packages — after which returns the merchandise to its rightful place. Kitchen tongs are additionally nice for grabbing an merchandise and dragging it nearer to the entrance of the cupboard, like a can of tomato paste, so I can attain it myself.

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Do you know your tongs might do that?


Angela Lang/CNET

Cleansing window blinds

Whereas researching the right way to clear window blinds quick, a chore I need to do as seldom as potential, I got here throughout an inspiring use for kitchen tongs: affixing sponges on the underside of every grip and shutting the entire contraption round every slat. You then merely slide the instrument from one finish of the blind to the opposite, and transfer on to the following. Full disclosure: I wound up utilizing a vacuum attachment to scrub my horizontal blinds this time as a result of I can not attain the highest slats and not using a chair, however I am wanting ahead to attempting out this system.

Retrieving toast

If I can discover a strategy to burn myself, I in all probability will. I am the one who has to the touch the recent factor with my naked arms, in all probability as a result of a few seconds of discomfort looks like an appropriate trade-off to get my toast onto a plate as rapidly as potential. Since I have been utilizing my kitchen tongs extra typically generally, I now attain for them after I need to seize toast. The favourite pair in my kitchen now, from Oxo, are mild sufficient to not crush the bread.

Final citrus juicer

I have been wanting to purchase a citrus juicer as a result of the old school type I’ve requires a number of shoulder work and by no means will get out all of the juice. As a substitute, I have been inserting a small mesh strainer over a bowl, chopping the citrus into quarters and squeezing it with my arms round a fork. Efficient, particularly at discovering cuts on my arms. But additionally messy and ridiculous.

That every one modified after I noticed a tip on-line about utilizing tongs as a lemon, lime and orange juicer, by chopping the fruit, inserting it between the arms, and squeezing with each arms. Very efficient! Simply watch out for aspect spray, and modulate your power. At first, I used to be crushing so arduous I needed to fish out the peels from the grooves on the within of the tongs.

Now I largely quarter my citrus and gently squeeze it between the silicone suggestions, proper over the bowl and high quality mesh strainer. Since I am sometimes simply juicing one lemon or lime at a time, I have not felt the necessity to purchase one other specialised instrument.

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Use kitchen tongs to squeeze citrus fruits. They work simply in addition to a handbook juicer. 


Alina Bradford/CNET

Greatest scorching pasta scoop — hear me out

That is my largest revelation. I’ve all the time used a pasta scoop to retrieve my cooked noodles from a pot of boiling water, or else dumped the entire pot over a big mesh strainer, which itself sat on prime of a bowl to gather the pasta water in case I wished so as to add some again into my sauce or noodles. 

The news all the time lets lengthy noodles slip out, which is irritating because the pasta begins to overcook. The dump-your-pot methodology is scorching, heavy and a much bigger trouble than it must be. Now I simply use my kitchen tongs proper on the range, grabbing lengthy noodle strands and dropping them right into a medium high quality mesh strainer that sits over a bowl to catch any scorching water that drips away. 

Admittedly, this system in all probability works finest for lengthy pasta and likewise for blanched greens, even leaves. No crushing in any respect. I nonetheless used the dump-it-all methodology for shorter pasta, like penne, in all probability extra from behavior than the rest, however I could attempt a kitchen spider-style spoon strainer subsequent time.


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Grabbing hot ramekins, baking sheets, oven racks

Remember the toast? Once I figured out that kitchen tongs and hot toast go together like peanut butter and jelly, I started absently reaching for the tongs to grab other hot items in one hand while supporting them with a hot pad in the other. 

Examples: removing a hot baking sheet from the oven, pulling out or pushing in a hot oven rack, removing small bowls from the microwave and ramekins from the microwave or oven. 

Depending on the size and shape of the bowls and plates, this might be a risky maneuver, especially because the bowl could slip in the tongs’ grip and spill its burning content all over you, or fall to the floor and break. So far this hasn’t happened to me, but please, if you try this yourself, exercise the utmost caution and always have a hot pad and steadying hand ready to support the item — the tongs should be used primarily to guide. 

Cleaning the grill

There are specialized grill tongs for food and tools for scraping and cleaning the grill, but any tong can also help you wield paper towels, an onion or whatever you use for light cleaning on the grill surface. It’s better than using your hands, and you get a surprising amount of leverage and maneuverability this way. 

For the record, here’s a heavier duty approach that CNET recommends for cleaning your outdoor BBQ and grill plates.

If you’re on a kitchen streak like I am, here are 21 cheap and easy meals to make for breakfast, lunch and dinner, 15 other essential kitchen tools, all the Instant Pots you can buy and our favorite cookware sets of the year. 

More neat things to try at home now

First published May 2, 2020 at 7 a.m. EST. 

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