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Wedding Registry: 10 Must-Have Kitchen Gadgets

Frivolous? No way. No wedding registry is complete without these cool cook's tools.

Photo: Mary Ellen Bartley

Your wedding registry is the perfect opportunity to upgrade your kitchen -- whether you're replacing your cheap college cookware or the hand-me-downs from your parents. Now, we know you're going to first gravitate toward the big-ticket items -- the mixer, the programmable coffeemaker. But it's these small kitchen gadgets that really pack a punch. They're the perfect add-ons to any wedding registry (hello, bridal shower) and will make cooking that much more fun.

Seafood Scissors

Why: To lessen your fear of deveining shrimp
If you've ever deveined shrimp using a paring knife, you know how tricky (and risky -- it's easy to slip!) seafood prep can be. Handle all kinds of crustaceans with these specialty seafood scissors. The curved blades are slim enough to devein, and also strong enough to cut through crab shells. For tougher jobs (such as lobster claw-cracking), use the cracker cleverly located between the handles. $9, CrateandBarrel.com

Ball Whisk

Why: To save your sauces
Whether you're whipping up delicious custard or making alfredo sauce, you'll need a good whisk to mix every ingredient evenly. This weighted ball whisk by WMF/USA has more flexibility than a traditional whisk, so it can reach every angle of a pan or bowl. Better yet, the open-pronged feature makes it simple to clean. $27, WMF-USA.com for stores

Timer

Why: So your brownies never burn
If you still use the clock on your cell phone to keep track of how long your meal has been in the oven, register for this oft-overlooked kitchen essential. This hour timer by Typhoon has a simple, retro design highlighted by a striking silver dial. You'll never overcook chicken again! $8, TyphoonUS.com

Salt & Pepper Mills

Why: For high-style spicing
Salt and pepper mills might not seem so gadgety, but a good one, a really good one, will flavor your food like no other. Peugeot (yes, the car company) has been making mills for more than a century, and it shows -- this pepper mill is adjustable for fine or coarse grinding and comes with a lifetime guarantee. Seven layers of buffed-by-hand lacquer make up this beautiful blue finish. $38 each, SurLaTable.com

Spatulas

Why: For multitasking
Each culinary creation calls for a differently shaped spatula, and this seven-piece set from Le Creuset has it all. The medium spatula works for your basic baking needs, while the slotted spatula spoon is great for cooked veggies and ravioli...you can use the mini spatula to smooth out the imperfections when you're icing a cake. $60, LeCreuset.com for stores

Avocado Scoop

Why: To make pitting pain-free
Getting the good stuff out of an avocado can be tricky. This scoop makes pulling out the pit a cinch, and the other end slices the avocado into easily eaten pieces. $15, Williams-Sonoma.com

Measuring Cups

Why: To prevent stuck drawers
For a fun twist on traditional measuring cups, register for the SleekStor Collapsible Cup Set from Chef'n. The colorful set of four ranges from one-fourth to one cup, and each folds up into the next to about the width of a finger. $20, Chefn.com for stores.

Grater

Why: To get time-saving shavings
A super-sharp, high-quality grater can be the difference between light, fluffy shavings of Parmesan and uneven chunks of cheese. This handheld Microplane grater has an 8-inch-long grating surface and teeth that won't clog -- plus you can toss it into the dishwasher when you're ready to clean. $13, Microplane.com

Knife Sharpener

Why: To keep your new knives in shape
Take care of your cutlery by sharpening your blades every few times you use them. A sharp edge isn't just easier to cut with, it's safer -- you'll have to use less force, so there's less chance you'll slip! $45, RainsofOjai.com

Can Opener

Why: No more hurt fingers
This innovative opener by Rosle cuts around the outside of the can, so there's no sharp metal edge when the top comes off. And because it cuts so close to the outside lip of the can, you can keep from spilling anything by popping the top back on while you're cooking. $30, Amazon.com

-- Miles Stiverson

See More: Registering for Wedding Gifts