13 vintage kitchen appliances we'd love to have again

We could really use a Beanery and hanging refrigerator.

Come the holidays, we start to spend even more time in the kitchen, whipping up banquets for our family and treats to share with friends. It always makes us think back to being a kid, lending mom and dad a hand in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, whether it was holding the electric mixer in a bowl or learning how to carve a turkey.

While the traditions and recipes remain, the appliances we use to whip them up are rather different.

We've gathered some vintage kitchen gear that we would love to still have, whether it be for aesthetics or convenience. Did you have any of these — or did you perhaps keep them?

1. The Naxon Beanery


Grandmothers everywhere swear by their Beanery, the original name for the Crock-Pot. Developed by Irving Naxon as a means of recreating his Lithuanian grandmother's bean soup, the Beanery revolutionized slow-cooking in the midcentury. In 1971, the Chicago-based manufacturer was bought out Rival, who renamed the plug-in pot the Crock-Pot.

Image: Reddit

2. Plastic Salad Spinner


Salad spinners are still around, certainy, but lacking in style. The plastic centrifuges came in pastel greens and creamsicle oranges. As kids, it was our favorite kitchen duty — sitting on the floor and cranking the thing like mad to dry lettuce. It was smart color design, as it felt like a toy. It's a brilliant way to get children to work in the kitchen.

Image: ThumbBuddyWithLove / Etsy

3. Salad Chopper


While we're on the topic of salads, let's discuss this forgotten convenience, seen in the upper right, billed here as a "Gourmet Salad Set." Looking like some kind of medieval barber's tool, this was essentially just a wooden block with a depression to hold a head of lettuce. Then you would hack at it with the half-moon blade. It's a pestle with sharpened mortar. Seems good for taking out your aggressions on some Iceberg.

Image: Wish Book Web

4. Ice Crusher


It's no secret that cocktail culture was at its peak in the 1950s. Here we have a handy device from late in the decade that could pulverize your ice cubes to make a chunky slush. You don't have to be sipping alcohol to enjoy the pleasures of a slushy drink.

Image: Wish Book Web

5. Combination Electric Can Opener and Knife Sharpener


Fewer people have electric can openers these days. Perhaps because they do not also sharpen your knives with a satisfying grinding noise.

Image: Wish Book Web

6. Electric Sock Warmer


We know what you are saying — socks in the kitchen? Look, we're just going off where these babies were advertised in the catalogs, next to the coffee pots. The idea of toasty toes on a cold morning is heaven, and what better place to get it done then next to the toaster?

Image: Wish Book Web

7. Elevated Cabinet Refrigerator


A hanging refrigerator? Well, it certainly makes cleaning underneath the fridge a far easier task, and keeps the Cool Whip tubs away from the little kids. We just hope you have some strong screws in the wall.

Image: Rikki Nyman / Flickr

8. Retractable stove


An electric range in a drawer? That's pretty brilliant.

Image: americanvintagehome / Flickr

9. Portable countertop dishwasher


Take it from people in Chicago who have lived in old apartments without dishwashers — we would have loved to have these suckers on the counter to make cleaning easier.

Image: BBC

10. These decorative patterned refrigerators


White refrigerators are so boring. Stainless steel, you say? Well, that's not quite paisley and plaid, is it?

Image: americanvintagehome / Flickr

11. Countertop breakfast griddle


It's like having your very own Waffle House on the counter. It cooks the sausage in a little drawer! You can knock out vittles for a big family quick.

Image: Wish Book Web

12. All-in-one kitchen


Wait, everything you need in a kitchen in one box? Why aren't these things on all those "Tiny House" shows?

Image: Bored Panda

13. Cutting board–covered range


Older kitchens were far better at hiding away their work areas. We like the idea of the room being a little more streamlined and multipurpose in that way. This Tappen put the cutting board right in front of the simmering pots. So much easier to toss in fresh veggies.

Image: Oddee



Now let's dig deeper through the cabinets and drawers of the past. You can never have too many citrus peeler. READ MORE

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harlow1313 26 months ago
Well, I still use my Fish-O-Matic to blend the perfect goldfish smoothie.
Moverfan harlow1313 25 months ago
That was the Bass-O-Matic, dear...
bnichols23 26 months ago
As I'm wont to say, "Gawd....."
ma2lyssa 26 months ago
Gotta love the All In One Kitchen where the sink was right next to the stove burners...
ELEANOR 26 months ago
While watching Classic Concentration, I happened to notice a combination microwave and refrigerator, I think from Monkey Wards. They have many more of those "blast from the past" appliances and electronics. Apple computers, stereos, electric typewriters, etc.
Retiredteachermom 26 months ago
My mom had a combination can opener and knife sharpener. Boy, did that thing make noise when sharpening knives! When it came time to finally buy a new one, she couldn't find an electric opener with a knife sharpener. Boy, was she upset. I think she finally adjusted but it took awhile.
It was a godawful sharpener, & could ruin a blade in a heartbeat (but that IS from the perspective of somebody who sharpens his knives with a diamond file & ceramic stones).
Catman 26 months ago
The best retro kitchen gadget I ever had was a Tommy Tippie baby food grinder. It was essentially a small, hand-cranked meat grinder with a suction cup bottom to hold it to the table. You could easily take it to a restaurant and feed Tbaby. So I had it for two kids, (who are now in their 40s) and we never bought baby food. They ate what we ate, only mushier. Truly a wonder, and when my first grandkid was on the way, I had a heck of a time finding one for his parents to use. They are back in style now, but they were scarce for a while.
daDoctah 26 months ago
I've still got my first-gen Veg-O-Matic. Haven't used it (or the one-speed blender) in ages, but I know right where it is.
Michael daDoctah 26 months ago
The only thing I remember using our Vegematic was cutting potatoes to make french fries.

I don't even remember cooking those fries.

It may still be in the kitchen.
KJExpress 26 months ago
We had those electric can openers with the knife sharpener in the back. Prior to that I remember a wall-mounted one where you cranked a handle to open the can.
Sway KJExpress 26 months ago
Had those too.
Catman KJExpress 26 months ago
Yes, the Swingline wall mounted can opener lasted forever and never failed.
Michael Catman 26 months ago
The first one lasted "forever", but we are on the third one since I was a kid.

We've never had an electric one.

Moverfan Catman 26 months ago
Don't know what brand it was, but my grandmother had one of those. Man, haven't thought of that in years..it was attached to the window frame over her stove...
nerstrand 26 months ago
Had the retractable stove, but after a while, if you pushed it in and pulled it out too much, some of the burners didn't work. So you ended up leaving it out all the time. Just found a can opener/knife sharpener in the basement, plugged it in, and it smelled like burning plastic, so it's in the junk pile!
MrsPhilHarris 26 months ago
I’m sure my parents had the combination electric can opener/knife sharpener. I think Bewitched had that #8 wall range.

TeresaDraper MrsPhilHarris 26 months ago
I immediately thought of bewitched when I saw #8
TheDavBow3 26 months ago
I just remember the can opener/sharpener and salad spinner. Those other modern marvels are neato!
Zip 26 months ago
I don't remember growing up with any of those except maybe the can opener. I do remember having one of those big can openers on the counter. I don't remember if it had a knife sharpener though.
justjeff 26 months ago
Some of those ideas were ahead of their time, some were just pain wacky... but #6: Electric Sock Warmer... I never owned one because I never wore electric socks!
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Moverfan Coldnorth 26 months ago
Charles owned them, but it was Klinger who identified them, bless his heart--"They're hunting socks. I got a bra like that!"
Mirramanee Coldnorth 26 months ago
I remember the one where the men all had to bunk together, some in hammocks, to stay warm due to a shortage of fuel. It was Major Burns who had the battery-operated socks. I know it was one of the early season episodes because Col. Blake was one of the men bunking in with them. By the end of the episode, they were so short on fuel, they were breaking up whatever wooden furniture they had to burn and the closing scene was of Blake talking on the phone asking HQ for supplies, saying they had practically nothing left. Blake's desk has finally been fully destroyed and he's sitting in an empty room saying he's looking at a "whole lot of empty".
Coldnorth Moverfan 25 months ago
Pretty funny stuff. Many times for me klingers lines were The best
Coldnorth Mirramanee 25 months ago
You are right. Who would think being cold could be so funny
Runeshaper 26 months ago
The Elevated Cabinet Refrigerator and Portable Countertop Dishwasher are great ideas!
Mirramanee Runeshaper 26 months ago
I agree! Never seen either of those, but that wall hanging refrigerator could really work, even today, especially in the very small NYC apartments whose kitchens are practically small closets. If the fridge could be built recessed into the wall (maybe over the sink), it could be secure and not likely to fall. I would prefer it over the sink rather than the stove as I think the heat from the stove would possibly cause it to not keep as cold as it should, but I think it could still really work in today's tiny apartments.
Runeshaper Mirramanee 26 months ago
That sounds like a great bunch of ideas!
harlow1313 26 months ago
I am disappointed they neglected to mention the "Handy Housewife Helper," as advertised on television and endorsed by The Chef of the Future. It can core a apple, and has a spear fishing attachment. Better living through television!
Moverfan harlow1313 26 months ago
Norton: Who are you?
(A stages frightened Ralph turns and runs out.)
Norton: Pray tell, who was that?
BrittReid harlow1313 26 months ago
Classic episode!
idkwut2use 54 months ago
Dang, I want a lot of those (specifically #5, 7-10, 12, & 13.)
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