Using Tools

I'll admit it. By the time July rolls around, I'm pretty much past the desire to assemble complex summer meals. If I can't get things done without involving more than about a half hour's worth of effort, I'm ready to tap out and order takeout. After all, we're looking at some of the hottest weather of the year and some of us are already facing the dreaded "I'm bored" routine from the kids. So I'm here to sing the praises using tools to help take the fuss out of meal time. It's time to take the heat off and get some help!

When it comes to grilling, I've already pointed out how amazing using cast iron can be, but I'm also a big fan of various kinds of pans on the grill as well. I have a few basket-types with mesh and holes to allow the heat to do its thing, but leaving your food easy to move around and ultimately remove from the grill. I also have a couple of stainless steel pans that I use when I am indirect grilling roasts and other large chunks of meat. When it comes to the grill, find tools that help you move food around and direct the heat you've got in the ways you want. And really, this time of the year is perfect for grilling since we're all trying to keep our homes as cool as possible.

Inside, I'm all about keeping the stove and oven off in summer. That means items like my panini grill, instant pot, crockpot, and electric skillet/griddle all work overtime. Whether I'm making baked beans in the crockpot, pressing quesadillas in the panini grill, or making corn on the cob in the instant pot, these appliances save me time, effort, and energy when summer is most likely to zap me of all three. What are your go-to summer saving tools when mealtime rolls around?