Whether you’re planning a modest kitchen update or a major remodel, new appliances will probably be part of the package. The best kitchen appliances make life easier by automating tasks that might otherwise take hours, and keep food fresh and beverages chilled. Choosing new appliances for the kitchen requires thought and consideration. Learn what to look for when shopping for the best kitchen appliances, and find out why one or more of the following choices deserve a spot in your kitchen.
- BEST OVERALL: GASLAND 30” Built-in Induction Cooktop
- BEST BUDGET: Cuisinart TOA-60 Convection Toaster Oven Airfryer
- BEST IN TECH: AmazonBasics Microwave, Small, 700W, Works with Alexa
- BEST STAINLESS STEEL: Hauslane Chef Series 30” Stainless Steel Range Hood
- BEST PORTABLE: Farberware Portable Countertop 5-Liter Dishwasher
Features Found in the Best Kitchen Appliances
Balancing needs with wants is the best approach to take when shopping for kitchen appliances, and in this area, function outweighs style. For example, you might not like the look of an exhaust fan over the range, but after tripping the smoke alarm a few times while frying fish, you’ll wish you had one. Don’t skimp on quality when buying kitchen appliances either, because cheap ones usually are less energy-efficient and don’t perform as well. That bargain dishwasher isn’t a deal if you have to scrape food off the dishes after the cycle ends.
All kitchens are different, but a few guidelines can help you choose the best kitchen appliances for your home.
Size and Available Space
Pick an appliance size based on the dimensions and configuration of the kitchen. Most major appliances come in standard sizes, and some are available in oversize or compact models.
- Refrigerator: Most fridges are 30 to 36 inches wide and 65 to 70 inches tall. Interior storage capacity depends on the fridge’s depth as well, which typically ranges from 29 to 35 inches.
- Range: A standard freestanding range or stove will fit in a 30-inch opening, stands 36 inches high, and is about 25 inches deep.
- Microwave: Size varies more in microwaves than other appliances. Those designed to install above a stove are typically 30 to 36 inches wide, 14 to 18 inches tall, and range from 15 to 17 inches deep. Countertop microwaves are often smaller, designed to take up minimal counter space. They can be as small as 17 inches wide, 14 inches tall, and just 10 inches deep.
- Dishwasher: The standard slide-in dishwasher is 24 inches wide, 35 inches tall, and 24 inches deep.
- Small appliances: Small appliances vary in size, but you should still consider the amount of counter space they’ll take up to keep the kitchen from looking cluttered.
To keep a kitchen from becoming outdated in a few years, consider buying white or stainless steel appliances, and when possible, make sure the appliances match. If you’re replacing all the major appliances in the kitchen, consider buying a complete set that comes with a fridge, a dishwasher, and a range, all from the same manufacturer series.
Due to rising utility costs and a desire among consumers to reduce fossil fuel consumption, appliance manufacturers are redesigning their products to use less energy while still performing effectively. The following will help you find an environment-friendly appliance that conserves energy.
- Check the EnergyGuide label: This is the yellow tag that comes with most appliances, and it contains a wealth of information, including: the appliance’s estimated yearly operating costs in dollars, along with estimated annual electric use in kilowatt-hours (kWh). For the most precise operating estimate—because electricity costs differ by community—multiply the annual electric use by the kWh rate listed on your utility bill.
- Look for the EnergyStar sticker: In addition to the EnergyGuide label, appliances that meet EPA standards for efficiency bear a blue sticker with a white EnergyStar logo.
- Look for an “Eco” setting: Some appliances, usually dishwashers, come with an energy-saving cycle that uses less energy than the regular cycle.
Tips for Buying the Best Kitchen Appliances
Upgrading a kitchen can be stressful because appliances are pricey, and homeowners want to get the most bang for their buck.
- Avoid impulse buying. Manufacturers often mark down appliances that don’t sell well, and you may think you’re getting a great deal, when in fact you could be buying an appliance with low ratings and poor performance. Don’t buy an appliance without researching it first.
- Stick to your budget. The top-tech models of appliances are swoon-worthy, but do you need a refrigerator with a camera inside? Set your budget and stick to it.
- Shop respected brands. Buying an off-brand may save money, but manufacturers with top track records are usually a better bet. Online research is essential, so use guides where the research has already been done, such as the ones on BobVila.com to buy the best dishwashers, the best built-in refrigerators, and the best electric cooktops.
Our Top Picks
To qualify as a top pick, a kitchen appliance must be durable, easy to use, and customer approved. This list is not all-inclusive, and your individual needs will vary, but each of the following kitchen appliances is well-built and well-suited to specific kitchen purposes.
If you’re in the market for a new cooktop, check out the GASLAND Electric Induction Cooktop with sensor touch control. The cooktop comes in a standard 30-inch width and features five cooking zones for preparing multiple foods simultaneously (additional sizes are available). Two of the cooking zones feature a Power Boost ability to heat up quickly, and the cooktop comes with sensor touch control that allows the cook to select from nine power levels, ranging from simmer to boil, at the touch of a finger. The sleek, black induction top is easy to clean and will go with any style décor. The cooktop also comes with a child safety lock and automatic shutdown protection.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a quality appliance. If you’re on a budget but looking to update your kitchen, look no further than the Cuisinart Convection Toaster Oven. For renters, tiny-home dwellers, or even those who want additional baking space, the Cuisinart toaster oven is just the ticket. It comes in stainless steel and features 0.6 feet of interior cooking space. The toaster oven offers seven cooking functions—air frying, convection baking, convection broiling, regular baking, regular broiling, toasting, and warming. The air circulation in convection mode will ensure even heat distribution and uniform browning of baked goods.
If you’re looking for a cooking appliance that operates via voice commands, consider the AmazonBasics Small Microwave that you can control with Alexa. To operate the microwave remotely, you’ll need an installed home Wi-Fi network and an Amazon Echo device (not included). Select from defrost, cook, or popcorn modes and simply tell Alexa to start cooking. The microwave can also be controlled from its digital keypad. It measures 17.3 inches by 10.1 inches by 14.1 inches, making it well suited for a countertop or a rolling kitchen cart. It features an easy-to-clean black exterior that will complement most kitchens.
efficient cooking ventilation, pair the Hauslane Chef Series Stainless Steel Range Hood with a stainless steel range or cooktop. The hood installs over a standard 30-inch range and comes with touch-screen control, a built-in digital clock, and programmable delayed shutoff. It features six vent-speed settings, so you can select the right amount of ventilation while cooking, and the hood has LED lights to illuminate the cooking surface. You can remove the hood’s stainless steel filters and run them through the dishwasher for easy cleaning.
If your kitchen doesn’t have space for a built-in dishwasher or you’re renting, consider the Farberware Portable Countertop Dishwasher. Made to sit on a countertop, the Farberware dishwasher has an intake hose that connects easily to a kitchen faucet and a drain hose that runs to the sink drain. It comes with both upper and lower washer arms to power away stuck-on food, and it’s the right size for a home with one or two residents. This portable dishwasher measures 17.3 inches wide and deep and stands 16.5 inches high. Select from five different wash cycles for cleaning dishes or even sanitizing baby bottles.
FAQs About Kitchen Appliances
Kitchen appliances make life easier and free up time for doing the things you’d rather be doing. If you’re just starting to look for appliances, you likely have some questions.
Q. What color is the most popular for kitchen appliances?
Stainless steel is the most popular finish for kitchen appliances.
Q. Are white kitchen appliances out of style?
White appliances stand the test of time. While other colors—think avocado and burnt orange—have come and gone, white kitchen appliances never seem to go out of style.