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12 Tasty Summer Cooking Ideas to Try

Summer Cooking Ideas

It is summertime – days lounging by the water, kids laughing and playing, and the smell of a delicious barbecue grill. For many, this is likely the first thing you think about when you hear tasty summer cooking. After all, what is summer if you are spending your long, sunny days outside, right?

Its all about getting hot then jumping in the water to cool off. A nice glass of lemonade or tea (or, of course, a frozen adult beverage such as Bahama Mama or a Pina Colada), some sliced watermelon, cool summer salads, and anything the grill can cook up.

And, the best part is that you don’t have to have a grill to make it happen. Bring the barbecue indoors – and enjoy the air conditioning. Use your professional range or range top to make the delectable eats.

Hold tight. We’ve got some great ideas for you for tasty summer cooking that you won’t want to miss.

Here are 12 tasty summer cooking ideas you can try today.

Summer Cooking Ideas

Face it, when your family is out and about playing, swimming, or sitting still hoping to make it by without totally melting, they are going to be hungry. They are going to want to munch on some food – especially since the majority of them will be working up an appetite.

So providing some small bites or appetizers for your friends and family is crucial to keeping everyone happy and full.

Fresh guacamole. How about some cool, creamy guacamole served alongside some tortilla chips? With hints of tomato and onion amidst the flow of avocado – it’s a great summer treat.

Jumbo shrimp with cilantro and chilis. Fire up that grill and enjoy some grilled shrimp stuffed with a kick of spice. Filling finger food that is actually good for you – imagine that!

Grilled chicken caesar salad crouton cup. You know how cool and refreshing salad can be when it feels like an oven outside. But, who wants to deal with all that mess? Instead, opt for a pop-in-your-mouth type of salad like this.

Main course

People sit outdoors soaking up the rays, smelling the food that is to come. As stomachs growl, you want to cook up some great – yet simple – foods that can be easily enjoyed at the table or poolside. You can use your outdoor grill or your range or cooktop indoors for these light and filling main courses.

Paella. This Spanish rice dish is a signature for many during the summertime. This rice dish filled with things like chicken, pork, sausage, shrimp, mussels, etc. is very versatile. You can switch it around adding the ingredients you have on hand at the time. There are no set of rules.

Grilled chicken with white BBQ sauce. Grilled chicken is a crowd-pleaser. It’s healthy and it tastes good. That makes it a win-win. Adding some white BBQ sauce – yes, white – made of mayo, horseradish, cayenne, sugar, and cider vinegar gives it a yummy yet tangy flavor.

Red snapper with chunky tomato and watermelon salsa. For those who love fresh fish, this red snapper recipe is wonderful. It brings in the flavor of the fish on the grill as well as the cool summer addition of a unique and tasty tomato and watermelon salsa.

Sides

Are you ready to take your BBQ and summertime eats to a whole new level? If so, then you will not want to spend all your time on the main course. Instead, you will want to devote just as much attention to the side dishes. Like these!

Grilled veggies with honey-thyme vinaigrette. Veggies are good for you. And even those who don’t like them can get fooled by how great the grill can make them taste. With the addition of a sweet and tangy vinaigrette such as this one, and you can sit back and watch your guests gobble them up.

Watermelon, tomato, and feta salad. Back on this red combo of watermelon and tomato, combined with feta cheese, and you’ve got yourself a cool, delightful salad. Of course, some mint, red onion, honey, and olive oil top it all off. Don’t knock it ‘til you try it. It is definitely a crowd-pleaser –, especially on a hot day.

Grilled pineapple salsa. Eat it with your main course, use it as a side with chips, or eat it all on its own. This delicious recipe is sweet and spicy and truly a summertime must-have.

Desserts

Finishing up your summertime menu with a bit of dessert is going to make the meal seem complete. Light and cool desserts work best for the heavy heat. Of course, so do various popsicles and ice cream.

Key lime pie. A summertime staple in the south – key lime pie – is a light dessert that will be a great finisher to any barbecue. It is a tart taste with a sweet crust that gives you a sense of pure perfection.

Caramel delight cookie apple salad. Perhaps one of the most uncommon dessert choices, you will soon discover why it should make this list. With a mixture of pudding, cookies, apples, and coffee creamer, you will be surprised at just how tasty this treat is.

Frozen fruit kabobs. Take your favorite fruits, such as pineapple, mango, strawberry, etc. and add them to a stick. Drizzle chocolate over them and freeze. Delicious and on the healthier side of dessert eating.

Conclusion

Your summertime meals should be easy to make and easy to consume. After all, don’t you want to spend all the time in the kitchen while your family and friends are out enjoying the long summer days, right? Don’t let that happen.

Instead, create menus based on delicious and healthy meals that you can throw together in no time. Some you may even be able to plan ahead. Then, surprise your guests with a delicious meal that kicks hamburgers and hot dogs to the curb. No one will know how easy it was unless you tell them.

So dust off that grill or fire up that cooktop with a griddle and get yourself cooking. Enjoy the rest of your summer.

Under Cabinet Appliances that Save Space

under cabinet appliances

Whether you have a small kitchen or just want to consolidate the space in your kitchen, you may be interested in exploring how under cabinet appliances can save space.

These appliances are designed to take up less space without sacrificing the utility in your kitchen.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at how under cabinet appliances save space for your consideration.

Under Cabinet Appliances Save Space

Do you ever find yourself secretly plotting how you can take down a wall to add a few more feet of livable space? Before you bring out the heavy tools, you should know that it is possible to make a small space seem larger and less, well, claustrophobic. And, no, it does not involve knocking down any walls.

When it comes to your kitchen, you need space. The cooking, the smells, and heat that cooking produce, and the fact that a kitchen is typically one of the most social areas of your home are all important reasons why having a small kitchen could present you with a few problems.

The Size of Your Kitchen

All kitchens are not created equal.

You typically look for space to cook, store cooking and eating items, and even store food. You have appliances – big and small – that need to be included, too. If you have a small kitchen, you may find it hard to hold on to many of these items. Where do you put them? What if you only have two cabinets – do you use it for food? Plates and bowls? Cups and glasses? All of the above?

Having a small kitchen does not mean that one is less worthy than the other. The size of your kitchen really is not that important. After all, there are so many things you can do to create space that you will forget that you lacked it. As you can tell, living in a home with a kitchen that has less-than-ideal space can invite you to open your creative side.

Only have two cabinets? Find ways to create more storage space. There are many ideas to do so.

The Importance of Counter Space

Cabinets are not the only thing that can be lacking in a small kitchen. Counter space can be hard to come by. You may only have a small space with which to do your prep work for cooking and baking. Unfortunately, by the time you sit out your toaster, toaster oven, food scale, blender, can opener, microwave, and so forth, you have taken up nearly all the available space.

You’d consider putting these items in the cabinets to get them off the counter – allowing you to have more space to utilize, but there is a problem. You’ve only got two cabinets. And, as we’ve established above, you already have a list of items that are going to potentially take up this space.

Counter space is important. Don’t clutter it with all of your miscellaneous appliances.

Over the Range Microwaves

Here’s a great option: why not install your microwave underneath your cabinet? This is a great way to save space. Think about the size and importance of microwaves for a moment. You want one because they are very convenient for certain items and at certain times. But, you know that they are rather large to be sitting on top of your countertop. Although, it is commonplace for them.

What if you don’t have the extra space? What if your microwave uses up so much of your countertop that you don’t have much room for anything else? Besides looking a bit out of sorts, it would also be a bit, well, disruptive in the flow of your kitchen.

To counteract all of this and to make sure that you have a microwave while still being able to utilize all the space in your kitchen, you are going to need an under cabinet microwave. Often installed above the range or cooktop, the microwave is designed to fit nicely underneath the cabinet – and off of your countertop.

Under-cabinet Range Hoods

Range hoods are an incredibly important part of a kitchen. Every time you cook, you are releasing toxins, heat, steam, and more into your kitchen. You feel it, you smell it, and you breathe it in. Unless, of course, you have a range hood. Range hoods work to filter out all the stuff you don’t want from cooking and give you back only the good stuff.

While many range hoods are beautiful enough to be considered the focal point of the room, a small kitchen is going to do best with a range hood that is under the cabinet and out of the way. Beneficial yet discreet.

Other Appliances that Save Space

Microwaves are not the only appliances to save you space by allowing you to install them under the cabinets. You may also want to consider installing an under-counter refrigerator to save space and others.

Of course, keep in mind that the more creative you are, the more you can discover ways to install many different items underneath your cabinets – and get them off of your counters.

Still Looking for More Ideas to Save Space in Your Kitchen?

Even if you get your small kitchen appliances off your countertops, you may struggle with your small kitchen in other ways. Maybe you don’t have enough drawers. Or, maybe your cupboards are too small.

The idea to make the most of your kitchen space is to double up on items. For instance, if you want an island in your kitchen, but your space is just too small for an everyday island, then have one designed to fit under the countertop. Slide it out when you need it and easily move it around when needed. The island can contain cabinets, too, so you don’t feel as though you are giving up something.

Conclusion

Your kitchen can be a place to whip up a delicious meal and magical memories. Don’t worry about the size – make the most of it. Use your imagination, get creative, stay organized, invest in under cabinet appliances, and you will find that your small kitchen will have such a huge feeling. Believe it.

9 Essential Kitchen Appliance Replacement Parts

kitchen appliance replacement parts

As your kitchen appliances wear over time, you may need to order replacement parts to ensure your appliance works properly.

Regularly maintenance should help ensure your appliances works properly for years to come without having to order replacement parts, but it’s always good to have that option available should something fall into disrepair.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at some of the most common kitchen appliance replacement parts you may need at some point.

Essential Kitchen Appliance Replacement Parts

When you buy a new car it runs great. It smells like new and runs as it should. But, what happens over time? The more you use your car (or even if you don’t use it often) things begin to require your attention. Battery, belts, sensors, lightbulbs, filters, and more will all need to be replaced in due time to keep your car working as it should.

Failing to replace them means you may be driving an automobile that provides you with less gumption than it should. After all, it needs healthy, working parts to function optimally.

Let’s be honest, your kitchen appliances are no exception. No matter how well you care for them or how gently they are used, you are bound to need a replacement part for your kitchen appliances at one time or another.

And, failing to replace these parts will leave you with an appliance that will give you a less-than-stellar performance.

Here are 9 essential kitchen appliance replacement parts that you will need to keep your appliances running in tip-top shape.

1. Griddle

If you have a range or cooktop that has given you the perks of having a griddle, you will likely not ever want to give it up. Griddles can be used for so much more than pancakes. And, once you get used to using it regularly, not having it will put a damper on your cooking style.

If you find that your griddle is not the new hot surface it once was, perhaps replacing it can give your range a makeover. And, well, it can bring happiness back to your cooking.

2. Telescopic Rack

Do you use your oven a lot? If so, then having a smooth, telescopic oven rack can be incredibly convenient. As you know, not all things are the same size. So to allow your food to bake as it should, you need to be able to move the racks.

Replacing the telescopic rack is simple. And, this ball-bearing, stainless steel oven racks glide smoothly into a full extension.

3. Burner Kit

If you have a range with 4 burners, then you want to be able to use all four burners, right? And, if you have a range with 6 burners, then you want to be able to use all six burners, right? When one burner stops working, many people just move on and use the others, taking the inconvenience – and believing that it is not possible to fix the burner.

But, here is the good news – it is fixable. You can have a fully functioning range top again. All you need to do is purchase a burner kit. Follow the instructions and your range will be back up and running at full capacity in no time.

You bought your range for your burners – so don’t make yourself get by without them.

4. Cooking Grate

No matter how sturdy and strong your cooking grates are, over time – and with heavy use – they will begin to look a bit dull just as with anything you use a lot. By adding a new cooking grate to your range or cooktop, you are giving an entire fresh makeover to your appliance. In fact, you can switch up the look just by changing design. For instance, there is crescent cooking grate, the cooking grate HRG, and the BX grate.

Choose the one that fits your design style and your cooktop. The sturdy, cast iron grate may be just what you are looking for.

5. Electrodes and Ignitors

Sometimes, your burner just won’t light anymore. When this happens, what will you do? Will you just continue to cook using the remaining burners? Or, will you take the necessary steps to purchase the essential replacement parts that will have you back in business?

It is very likely that your range or cooktop is going to require an electrode. If it is not working, this could be the reason. It is a good idea to consult your appliance manual to determine which part you need to purchase and how to install the replacement. Don’t force yourself to play musical chairs with your burners any longer when a simple fix is available.

6. Ignitor

Oven not heating? If your broiler function is working, but your bake function is not – or vice versa – you may need to replace the ignitor. After all, in order for the oven to work, you are going to need to ignite the heat.

Because you need your oven to make things, such as cakes and cupcakes, casseroles, and other delights, you don’t want to have to go without it. Consult your manual and get your ignitor going.

7. LP Conversion Kit

If you have a preference for propane over natural gas, then you should use it. But how? With an LP conversion kit. This kit allows you to switch from using one gas to the other with ease. So, depending on the price of the gas or the availability in your area, know that you are not limited to the range you can buy because the LP conversion kit is available.

8. Safety valve

Being able to have gas appliances in your home is a great addition. But, they come with a risk. After all, gas is dangerous and can cause some serious damage to your home if something goes wrong. Thankfully, your gas appliances come with a safety valve.

In the event that something goes awry, the safety valve shuts the gas down and won’t release until everything is checked.

9. Thermostat

When you have to bake something spectacular for some amazing guests, you need it to turn out right. If your thermostat is not working, though, you will not get the temperature you are seeking – if you get one at all.

Replacing your thermostat can keep your oven working in great shape. Don’t allow yourself to lose out on a great meal because your oven is not working.

10. Conclusion

Your kitchen appliances should function properly for years to come so long as you perform regular maintenance and cleaning. However, if something should break or fall into disrepair for whatever reason, you might need to order one of these nine common kitchen appliance replacement parts.

The Best Kitchen Appliances for the Money

best kitchen appliances for the money

Whether you’re purchasing kitchen appliances for a new home or replacing older appliances, you’re probably looking for the best kitchen appliances for the money.

With so many options available, it can become overwhelming if you’re not sure what you’re looking for.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at some of the best kitchen appliances for the money to help you get started.

The Best Kitchen Appliances for the Money

Having a kitchen designed how you want it is very important to a home. After all, the kitchen is where you spend time cooking, baking, talking, and so much more. It’s a place of social gathering and a place to make memories.

You don’t need to have the best appliances, but it sure does make life a bit more enjoyable when you do, doesn’t it? Here’s the good news – it is absolutely possible to have the best appliances in your kitchen without having to go over-budget with your spending.

Don’t believe us? Check out these best of the best appliances that will give you the most bang for your buck.

Refrigerator

Every kitchen needs a refrigerator. That’s a given. They keep food fresh and safe to eat. Of course, they also keep our beverages cold and our ice cream frozen, too. But, what kind of refrigerator do you need in your kitchen? What’s the best available that can give you some great features without draining your bank account? Check this refrigerator out.

*Thor Kitchen, Model HRF3602*

This 22.5 cubic foot, 2-Door French Door Refrigerator with Recessed Handle comes in a brightly shined Stainless Steel finish. It is counter depth, leaving you with a smooth flow through the kitchen. The bottom, 2-drawer freezer offers a great amount of space for organizing and storing all your frozen foods. Plus, it comes with these features:

  • A door alarm.
  • An LED light in the refrigerator.
  • Adjustable temperature control.
  • An automatic ice maker.

Range

Ok, so you’ve got an amazing refrigerator, but what will you use to cook your food? That’s right – you need a range. Having an all-in-one cooking device such as this can allow you to work your magic both with cooking and baking.

Have you ever tried cooking a large meal only to find out you didn’t have enough space? You won’t have to worry about that any longer. With this ideal range, you will have all the stove top – and oven space – you could ask for. And, with its professional design, you better believe it will hold up well with all the cooking you intend to do.

*Thor Kitchen, Model HRD3606U*

This Thor Kitchen range is 36-inches of shiny stainless steel. Perhaps the biggest point to boast is that it is dual fuel. That’s right – it has a gas stove top and an electric oven. Professional chefs and bakers everywhere will tell you that these are the ideal heating methods to ensure precise cooking times and temperatures. Plus, it has these great features:

  • 6 burners, with heating temperatures up to 18,000 BTU
  • Continuous cast iron grates for easy movement.
  • A porcelain drip pan for easy cleanup.
  • LED lighting in the oven.
  • Large oven interior with porcelain inside for easy cleaning.

Overall, this range is sure to add a sparkle to your kitchen with its modern design.

Rangetop

So, what if you don’t want a full range? Or what if you do, but you have an island where you’d like to have an extra rangetop for convenience? There is nothing stopping you. Sometimes, having a simple rangetop can provide you with a comfortable place to cook and socialize with your family. You can even save space without a bulky range in those kitchens that are lacking the square footage.

Remember, there is no rule book that says you must have a range. If you prefer the rangetop, then you’ll love these offered by Thor Kitchen. You have your choice of gas and induction. No matter which one you choose, you will be delighted with your choice.

*Thor Kitchen, Model HRT3003U*

This 30-inch professional gas range-top in stainless steel offers you a great place to cook that can be installed on any countertop – including your kitchen island. It comes with

  • 4 burners that heat up to 18,000 BTU.
  • A porcelain drip pan for easy cleaning.
  • Cast iron cooking grates that give a nice look with lasting durability.

*Thor Kitchen, Model HIC3601*

If induction cooking is of interest to you, then adding this 36-inch induction cooktop in black with 5 elements will be a great bonus to your kitchen. Induction cooking is the latest in precision cooking. And, something all cooking fanatics should know about. It has multiple safety features and lots of cooking space.

Ice Maker

Do you have a lot of get-togethers? Are you an avid ice cruncher? Always running out of ice? Instead of running to the store each and every time you need a bag of ice, why not treat yourself to your own ice machine? This is a surefire way to save money – with few trips and fewer bags of ice.

*Thor Kitchen, Model HIM1555BLK*

This 15-in wide, under-counter ice maker can provide you with up to 50lbs of ice each and every day. It makes cube ice, holding 26.5lbs of ice in storage – ready for you when you need it. It’s stainless steel and it looks very sleek. That means it will easily fit in with your other appliances while fulfilling an important role in your kitchen.

Microwave

Finally, every kitchen needs a microwave. However, going all out on an extremely expensive microwave is not going to serve any great purpose. Everything you could want, in a great-looking package, with a durable and professional construct, you will find in this microwave. Check it out:

*Thor Kitchen, Model HOR3001*

This 30-inch, 1.7 cubic foot microwave is a great addition over your range. It saves countertop space in the kitchen and it’s a great match with your other stainless steel appliances. This means you can have great flow from any angle. It features:

  • 7 cooking presets
  • 3 Soften Option
  • 3 Convenient Defrost
  • Sensor cooking
  • Quick-Start options

Conclusion

Putting your kitchen together means you get the chance to choose the appliances that will make the most of your kitchen while staying within your budget. While initially, you may feel that this is a difficult task, you will soon learn that the professional quality you can receive from Thor Kitchen for the price is unmatched.

12 Delicious Dishes to Try with a Gas Range with Griddle

gas range with griddle - thor kitchen

If you’re interested in purchasing a new gas range for your kitchen, you may be interested in considering a gas range with a griddle.

The griddle can be used for a variety of dishes, which we will explore today.

In this article, you will learn more about cooking with griddle and discover 12 delicious things you can try on a gas range with griddle.

A Gas Range with Griddle

Combine great food with great company and you can’t really ask for anything more, right? In order to make great food, though, you’ve got to have the right equipment. Of course, this includes the appliances in your kitchen. And all appliances are not created equal.

Your range, for instance. Is it gas? Electric? Dual fuel? Does it have a griddle in the middle? Consider this: the more cooking space you have and the more durable your appliance is, the more cooking you can do. In fact, with a gas range and griddle, you have the ability to enjoy these 12 delicious benefits.

12 Delicious Dishes to Try with a Griddle

What is the first food that comes time mind when you say the word griddle?

Pancakes, of course!

You know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. So, for those rare moments when everyone is around to enjoy some – or if you choose to make breakfast for dinner – you will not want to miss these pancake recipes. And, we are not just talking plain pancakes.

Check these out.

1. Red velvet pancakes.

Dessert for breakfast? Yes, please! Who wouldn’t want to have red velvet in a scrumptious breakfast version?

2. Whole wheat cherry pancakes

You have undoubtedly heard of blueberry pancakes, but who has ever had cherry pancakes? They are outside the box and that is what makes these so delicious.

3. Strawberry sprinkle funfetti pancakes

These pancakes are like a birthday surprise. With strawberries and sprinkles on the inside and on top. All you need is some whipped cream and strawberry syrup. The kids will definitely love these.

4. Peanut butter cup pancakes

Believe it or not, this stack of delis is vegan and gluten-free! They have an outer ring of chocolate and an inner circle tasting of peanut butter. Serve with a real peanut butter cup (or your own alternative). They taste a bit gooey and this melting cup of peanut butter and chocolate on top just takes the cake.

5. Pancake dippers

Oddly shaped pancakes that look more like an elongated oval than a round pancake. It is the secret inside that makes them look different. What is it? A slice of bacon. Pancakes and bacon have long been a courting combo, so it only makes sense to combine them. Add some batter, gently press in a slice of cooked bacon, then add a little more batter. When done, dip ‘em in some syrup.

Pancakes are tasty, but hey – griddles aren’t just meant for cooking pancakes, right?

6. Apple, Pancetta, and Sharp Cheddar Croissant

For most people, grilled cheese is the epitome of comfort food. Who doesn’t love them? This recipe uses your griddle to make something so simple, yet so incredibly delicious. What a great way to bring people together – kids and adults, alike.

7. Griddle Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches

If a grilled cheese doesn’t seem to make your mouth water, perhaps this will. Onions, peppers, mushrooms, roast beef, and melted provolone cheesy goodness.

8. Flour Tortillas

Taco night! Have you ever made your own flour tortillas? This is likely something you haven’t given much thought to and just buy your own. Surprisingly, however, flour tortillas are simple to make and only require four ingredients. Fill them with beef, chicken, beans, veggies, fish, and all the topping you want. Everyone loves tacos – and it’s a great, simple way to bring everyone together.

9. Classic Maryland Crab Cakes

So often the griddle is used as a great way to make pancakes. And, it is. But it can also cook great crab cakes, too. If you follow this recipe it will provide you with everything you need to create this delight that is sure to be enjoyed by everyone.

10. Stir Fry Singapore noodles with garlic ginger sauce.

A griddle is a very versatile appliance. You can even cook a noodle dish. Bright veggies and aromatic flavors make this a wonderful dish. Cook it up rather simply just by using your griddle.

11. Griddled rump steak

If you are a meat and potatoes person, no need to fret. You can use your griddle for that, too. This rump steak has its flavors sealed in, leaving it with a great taste and a juicy experience. Add some balsamic tomatoes that are cooked right next to it and you’ve got yourself a great meal.

12. Griddled pineapple and ice cream

The list wouldn’t be complete without dessert. Griddle yourself some pineapple until it is just a little brown and caramelized. Remove from the griddle and add a scoop of ice cream on top. It’s a delicious combination of hot and cold, sweet and tart.

Don’t have a griddle but these recipes make you hungry for one? Try this one…

Thor Kitchen HRG4808U Gas Range with Griddle

If you’re interested in the idea of purchasing a gas range that comes with a griddle built-in, we recommend checking out our 48″ gas range with griddle.

This beautiful gas range offers both the cooking space and power you need to cook up just about anything. This model comes with a few features you think you will enjoy, including a commercial convection fan, infrared broil burner, and a 15,000 BTU stainless steel griddle.

Discover the HRG4808U today!

Conclusion

Spending time with your loved ones is important in life. You spend such a gigantic part of your days fulfilling responsibilities. But, the world today is unpredictable – and time is never a guarantee. It is up to you to make meal-time a priority – every day. By doing so, you and those you care about can fill hearts as you fill tummies.

The recipes above on you Thor Kitchen 36-inch professional gas range is sure to make a difference.

What is a Kitchen Range?

what is a kitchen range

If you’re thinking about updating your kitchen stove, you may be wondering what you should purchase – a cooktop or a range.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at one of the most common questions we hear from people interested in updating their kitchen appliances …

What is a kitchen range?

What is a Kitchen Range?

There is an appliance in just about every kitchen that is used just about every day. Well, at least on those days that you cook. It is that large square thing that you cook on – or in – depending on what you are making.

So, what do you call it? Some people just refer to it as a stove. Others? Well, they refer to these appliances as an oven. But, let’s take a moment and think about this. This appliance has both of these items – a stove and an oven. What is its true, all-encumbering name?

A range.

Because these appliances are an integral part of every kitchen, it is imperative that you know what they are and how they work. After all, you may just find yourself in need of purchasing one someday – and you’ll be glad you did your research.

The Parts

A range is primarily a combination of a cooktop or stove and an oven. Both combined into one nice and convenient package.

The difference is that each of these parts can be different sizes and offer different specs or features. Some ranges may be 30 inches, others may be 36 inches, and yet others may be 48 inches wide. The larger the range, the more benefits it is able to offer. For instance, larger ranges will have the capability to give you six stovetop burners and a griddle. Smaller ranges may only have space for two burners.

In addition to the parts, there is the question of how they are heated. This is where you get even more options. Many ranges come standard as either fueled by gas (propane or natural) and others are fueled by electricity. Of course, there is another option that seems to be favored by many – especially those professional or serious chefs and bakers.

This type of range is known as the dual fuel range. It gives the range the ability to cook with the power that works best. For those who are serious bakers, it is commonly known that gas ovens do not provide consistent heat, therefore preferring electric ovens for thorough and even baking. Things are quite different when it comes to the stove top. Electric heat has been known to make it difficult to control the cooking temperatures, while heat fueled by gas is more precise.

A Cooktop

Before we go any further, you need to know an important detail. Never confuse a cooktop with a range. Why? Because they are two entirely different appliances. See, a cooktop is just that – a cooktop. Whether it is an electric cooktop, a gas cooktop, or an induction cooktop – it only contains a cooktop. Or, in other words, a stove.

Most often cooktops are dropped into your counter space or installed within it. They have cabinets underneath and contain no oven. For all intents and purposes, a cooktop is solely a stove.

The best part about them is that they don’t take up as much space as a range. And, they can even be used as a secondary cooking appliance.

Understanding BTUs

When purchasing a range, you will come face-to-face with the term BTU. For example, a stove may have burners on it that range from 650 BTU to 18,000 BTU. What in the world does that mean? Let’s talk about it.

BTU stands for British Thermal Unit and it is known as the traditional unit of heat. To be specific, it is referred to as the required amount of heat that is needed to increase the temperature of one point of water by one degree Fahrenheit. To put it short, it is the amount of heat that is put off by the burner on your stove.

The range that you have in your home – or the one you are going to purchase – will likely come with varying amounts of BTUs. The average BTUs that your range should have is about 7,000. Some stoves give you less, some give you more. In fact, there are stoves that offer low-heating burners that are great for simmering. And, some that give you 18,000 BTUs when you need to boil that water quickly.

You shouldn’t have to worry too much about BTUs when purchasing a range. But, when it comes to purchasing a range hood, it is another story. You will need to know the strength of your stove so you know the strength of a range hood you need – to be sure it can handle cleaning the air.

The Benefits of Stainless Steel

Ranges come in designs, but stainless steel ranges are able to stand up to the job at hand. No matter how brutal you get with your cooking or baking abilities, the stainless steel is strong, durable, and it won’t corrode. In fact, you can cook a feast, wipe it down, and your range will still pop with shine in your kitchen.

Porcelain – Why You Need It

Professional ranges, such as those offered by Thor Kitchen, come with porcelain drip pans under and around the burners as well as porcelain ovens. And for good reason.

When you do a lot of cooking, the kitchen can get a bit, well, messy. Whether you are stirring soups or baking cupcakes, it does not matter how careful you try to be – you are bound to make a mess. Now, the question is, when it happens, will you be able to clean it up with ease? Remember, if you have a gas or electric stove top, it is likely that the surface area will be hot, leaving the food baked on.

Porcelain is what you need to look for if you want an easy cleanup every time.

Conclusion

Well, hopefully by now you have a better understanding of what a range is. And, while it is likely that you already have one in your kitchen, there is a good chance you may need to replace it in the future. And, when you do, you will understand that a professional grade, stainless steel, dual fuel range with porcelain drip pans is exactly what you need.

What’s the Standard Refrigerator Size?

standard refrigerator size

If you’re a homeowner interested in purchasing a new refrigerator, you may be wondering if there’s a standard size available.

This is an important question to ask when considering the space you have available in your kitchen and the variety of refrigerators available.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at the common question – what’s the standard refrigerator size?

What’s the Standard Refrigerator Size?

Refrigerators. These necessary appliances work to keep your food fresh, your drinks cold, and your popsicles frosty. Ever since their creation, they are a must-have appliance in every home. But, are they all created equal? In short, no. But let’s dig a bit deeper.

What’s the size

What constitutes a standard size? Is this is the size of the majority so it just becomes standard? Or was it created to be a specific size and kitchens were designed around them? While we may need to dig deep into refrigeration and design history to find the answer – or we may never even find out at all – for the sake of this article, we will refer the refrigerator-size that is the most popular. You know, the one that fits nearly every kitchen.

Why Size is Important

Are you currently remodeling? Do you have a kitchen that you adore, but you want a new refrigerator? When it comes time to replace your refrigerator, despite your reasons for doing so, you need to make sure you have the space to accommodate the refrigerator you want.

This is when the standard size becomes important. If you have a standard sized refrigerator and you would like to replace it with an updated model, you will have lots of options to choose from. However, what happens when your refrigerator is smaller, larger, or even custom designed? You may find that you have difficulty discovering a refrigerator to fit your kitchen space – if you even find one at all! In fact, this can severely limit your available options.

Let’s not even talk about the installation! Finding a refrigerator the same standard size as yours often comes with a simple removal and reinstallation into the same location in your kitchen (unless, of course, you are remodeling). However, purchasing a refrigerator that is either smaller or larger than what you used to have, means that you will have to figure out a way to accommodate it. You may have to fill space or cut cabinetry to open space.

What is the Standard Refrigerator Size?

Here is the information you have been waiting for:

Ok, so now that you know what size is important, what size is actually considered standard? Typically, the standard size for a professional-grade refrigerator falls between 30 to 36 inches width, 67 to 70 inches in height, and 29 to 35 inches in depth. When it comes to the interior, the refrigerator itself should provide you with 14 to 20 cubic feet of space. Totally, however, you are looking at an average between 22 and 31 cubic feet.

Of course, some smaller kitchens may consider a smaller size refrigerator to be more standard. In fact, it is very common to find smaller refrigerators in places such as condos and rental apartments. These smaller sizes, however, are not the standard size.

How to Properly Measure for Your Refrigerator

Whether you are wanting to know what size your refrigerator is before you head out shopping (which is a very wise choice) or you are just curious if yours fits the standard bill, you need to know how to properly measure the current refrigerator you have.

Height

Measuring the height of your refrigerator is simple, as long as you remember that refrigerators do need a little bit of breathing room to function optimally. Measure the space from the floor up to see how tall your refrigerator can go. Remember to take overhead cabinets into consideration.

As for the breathing room, you will want to leave at least a ½ inch on either side and the top of the appliance.

Width

Having an accurate width measurement is very important. Use your measuring tape to measure the width of the space you have available, whether it is from wall to wall, cabinet to wall, or cabinet to cabinet.

The number you reach is the width of your refrigerator space. However, be sure to add at least ½ on the sides, as stated above, to allow for breathing room.

Depth

When it comes to refrigerator depth, you basically have two options in mind – counter depth or standard size. If you are looking for a refrigerator that fits neatly with your countertops without too much protrusion, then you are looking at a counter depth refrigerator. Otherwise, standard size refrigerators often stick out a bit further than the counters do.

To measure, you will want to use your tape measure from the wall to the edge of your counters. That is your counter depth size. If you want to go bigger, then add an additional 6 inches to this number.

When determining the depth, one of the biggest things to keep in mind is that you need to make sure you will have room for doors and drawers to open without hitting a wall or island in front of it. Measure the additional kitchen space you have in front of the refrigerator to determine the size you can comfortably fit.

Real life specs

Having a real example is often a great way to get an idea of specs for your refrigerator. To help you out, here are the real specs from a very popular refrigerator model.

Thor Kitchen’s Model HRF3602, French door refrigerator with two freezer drawers and recessed handles gives you 22.5 cubic feet of interior space. Here are the dimensions of this counter-depth refrigerator:

  • Refrigerator Size: 36 inch
  • Product Width: 35.8in
  • Product Depth: 7in
  • Product Height: 9in
  • Depth Excluding Handles: 28.7in
  • Depth without Door: 24.4in
  • Depth with Door Open 90 Degrees: 43.15in
  • Height to Top of Door Hinge: 69.80in
  • Height to Top of Refrigerator: 68.70in
  • Refrigerator Capacity: 16 cu. ft
  • Freezer Capacity: 6.5 cu. ft

Conclusion

If you take care to measure diligently and understand your available space – and your limitations – you should not have any trouble at all with finding a refrigerator to fit your space. Will it be the standard size? Perhaps. Although, you have a lot of options to choose from so find what works best for your family and your space.

10 Galley Kitchen Renovation Ideas

Galley Kitchen Renovation Ideas

Galley kitchens are popular in both small and large spaces, as well as in any design style. However, due to their inability to maneuver around the walled space, renovating options may seem limited.

Today, we’re taking a closer look at 10 galley kitchen renovation ideas.

Galley Kitchen Renovation Ideas

Galley kitchens are very common. This style presents itself with a pair of parallel walls and a flowing walkway in between. Each side contains a varying combination of cabinets, cupboards, countertops, and appliances.

Choosing to make small changes or renovations to a galley kitchen can have a major positive impact. To help you get started, we’ve put together a list of the 10 quickest galley kitchen ideas that will give you big results.

1. Upgrade to stainless steel appliances

Stainless steel appliances make a wonderful addition to any kitchen – and any design style. However, when it comes to a galley kitchen, adding stainless steel appliances not only look stunning, but they also bring with them an additional benefit: brightness.

Smaller kitchens, including galley kitchens, can seem a bit stuffy. The idea is to brighten up space, making it feel more open and breathable. Black, dark, or dull appliances fail at this trick. Stainless steel, however, can give you just what you need.

Thor Kitchen offers a wide variety of beautiful appliances in stainless steel, including gas ranges and refrigerators.

2. Avoid dark colors

Just as we discussed when it comes to the color of your appliances, dark colors, in general, can make a small space seem smaller. This includes your countertops, your cupboards, and shelving, as well as your floors and walls.

Remember, light and bright is what you are going for to make your galley kitchen seem more open and inviting.

3. Update your lighting

Lighting in the kitchen is one of those things that often gets pushed to the back burner. However, lighting can have a great impact on the feel of your kitchen space. This is especially true for those kitchens that are smaller or narrower in size, such as a galley kitchen.

First and foremost, avoid large and bulky light fixtures as they only work to make your space seem more crowded, despite their light. Instead, for this space, consider recessed lighting. These small lights can give a big impact. But, because they are recessed, they are out of the way and do not affect the flow or design of the kitchen itself.

4. Add a bright backsplash

A neat backsplash can make any boring kitchen appear magical. When it comes to your galley kitchen, your backsplash should be bright, colorful, and bring life to the space. For example, having dark countertops and/or dark cupboards can cramp the space. However, placing a bright backsplash between them can off-set the dreary vibes. Choose various shades or designs of metal or brightly colored pieces of tile or glass.

Another fun option for an effective backsplash would be to add mirrors throughout the galley kitchen. Mirrors can extend any small space, giving the illusion that it is bigger than it actually is.

5. Organize your countertop clutter

Renovating doesn’t necessarily have to mean you incur big construction processes. It could simply require you to create a new structure and organization of space. When it comes to your galley kitchen, keeping your countertop space open can make this space appear less constricting.

It is easy to throw things such as mail, bills, recipe books, kids’ homework, etc. on your kitchen counter. Despite how neat of a stack you keep, it still looks cluttered and in the way. Take time to organize your countertop clutter and find a method of keeping it at bay. This will increase the flow and comfort you find while within your kitchen.

6. Keep your appliances along one wall, if possible

Believe it or not, the placement of your appliances matters. When it comes to your galley kitchen, there are things that you need to take into consideration when it comes to cooking. Sure, your kitchen may only have one chef on most days. However, that may not always be the case. Having more than one person cooking in a galley kitchen can leave you feeling as though you just played a game of human Tetris.

One way to avoid any issues is to place all your appliances on one side of the kitchen. This reduces the need for you to be back-to-back when cooking and maneuvering the space.

7. Let in the natural light

Natural light does wonders for many situations – especially galley kitchens. It’s not often that many of these spaces have an included window. But if there is one located within or near your kitchen (such as at the end of the space) use window treatments that offer you privacy without taking away the natural light.

8. Use large tile or stone flooring, rather than smaller options

Something you may not have considered is the type of flooring you have selected for your galley kitchen. If you’d like to take advantage of a renovation that will open up the walkway of the kitchen and make the entire space seem more flowing, change your floors.

Choosing large tiles or stone flooring, rather than smaller tiles will leave you with a much more open walkway.

9. Take your storage to the ceiling

What do you do if your kitchen is lacking space? You make use of every open spot available. Of course, you don’t want to over­-clutter your kitchen, but taking advantage of space, such as the untouchable area located at the top of your cupboards, can be very beneficial.

Just be sure to keep it neat, clean, and organized or you will find it has a counter-effect.

10. Opt for open shelving

Not everyone is daring enough to give up cabinets and opt for open shelving. After all, it does require you to be a bit more organized. Though, when it comes to a galley kitchen, choosing to forego the cupboards – whether partially or entirely – and adding sturdy, open shelving can give the feeling of more open space.

Conclusion

Renovating your galley kitchen should be fun and exciting. There are so many options and trends that can take your space and transform it into some bright, orderly, and welcoming -just as a kitchen should feel.

Photo by wu yi

10 Best Kitchen Layouts that will Inspire You

Best Kitchen Layouts

When creating the layout for your kitchen, you must take into consideration that this space is much more than just a place to cook or store your food. It is where your family and friends come together. It is where your kids will do homework and last-minute science fair projects. It is where you and your spouse will have a nightcap long after the kids are in bed. And, it is where you will nourish those you love with food and good talks.

All this means that when you are creating your layout, you must make sure it is the perfect space to house everything you do – or hope to do – in your kitchen. While your kitchen layout will be all your own, we’ve got 10 of the best kitchen layout ideas to get you motivated.

1. The L-shaped Kitchen Layout

This kitchen layout is rightly named, as it is shaped like the letter L. It makes the best use of space for those kitchens that are located in a corner. Small and mid-size kitchens work the best with this layout.

In design, either side will have cabinet and countertop space. The curve of the L can also contain the same. Or, it opens up the opportunity for adding an island, a dining space, or another such area within the kitchen. A benefit to the L-shaped kitchen is that its curves and perpendicular walls reduce the amount of traffic, as it is not an easy, slide-through space.

2. The One-wall Kitchen Layout

If you live in a home that has wide open spaces, such as in a loft or studio-type space, then you may benefit from a one-wall kitchen layout. This is an open kitchen, with all the cabinets and countertops along one wall.

For those seeking to more clearly define a space for the open kitchen, often adding an island can do just that.

3. The U-shaped (Horseshoe) Kitchen Layout

Like the L-shaped kitchen layout, the U-shaped looks just as it is described. It may either have three walls that contain countertops and cabinets. Or, it may be in an L-shaped layout with an island in the middle, giving it a horseshoe shape.

This space is roomy, allowing multiple people to be in the kitchen without feeling crowded. Plus, it provides you lots of prepping, cooking, and storage space.

4. The Store-it-up-high Layout.

If you find yourself with minimal space for a kitchen, you may not necessarily have all the cabinet space you need to store your items. Choosing to store your items up high can reduce the need for islands, extra walls, and additional storage. Simply create shelving – and stack it up. You can even hang pots and pans above the head, too.

This allows you to keep a wide-open kitchen and still have a place for everything. 

5. The Galley Kitchen layout.

When you hear the word galley, a ship or an aircraft may come to mind. Perhaps that is because when, for instance, you are on a ship, the kitchen is referred to as the galley. So, when it comes to designing the layout for the kitchen in your home, a galley kitchen is one that is efficient and makes the best use of a small space.

Typically, a galley kitchen has countertop (or wall) on either side and has a straight walk-through. There is no island and no turns. Rather, it is a simple layout that uses every inch of available space.

6. The G-shaped Kitchen Layout.

Moving on with the letter layouts, the G-shaped kitchen contains three walls and the look of a horseshoe. However, the difference comes in with the addition of a partial 4th wall or a peninsula. While this brings the kitchen more space for storage and cooking, it also can make the area feel a bit cramped.

Before considering the G-shaped kitchen, be sure you have enough space to do so.

7. The Island Kitchen Layout

Adding an island to a current kitchen layout can bring many great benefits. You can add appliances to it or simply leave it as an open prep space – or add bar stools and make it a great place to eat. They can be as big or small as needed for the space. However, it is important to note that not every kitchen can benefit from an island. Some kitchens are simply too small for one and adding an island will only make the space feel cramped and unfunctional.

8. The Two-island Kitchen Layout.

If an island is so wonderful, why not add two? If your kitchen is large and has a lot of open space, it may seem too empty. While you don’t want it to look cluttered, adding two parallel islands can create a great use of space.

These islands can contain appliances – or not. However, both can be designed to serve its own functional purpose.

9. The Peninsula Kitchen Layout.

A peninsula kitchen layout is an addition to either an L-shaped or a U-shaped layout. Rather than adding an island to the space, these kitchens add on an extension to a current counter space. It leaves the area with a peninsula that is functional and beneficial to the kitchen, but more open and freely designed.

10. The Right Design just for You

Every kitchen is different. And, for some, none of the typical kitchen layouts may apply to your space. If you find yourself in this situation, then it is time for you to let your creativity flow and begin designing the perfect kitchen space for you.

While you are free to design your kitchen however you see fit, you do want to avoid obstructing the kitchen triangle. Haven’t heard of this yet? The kitchen triangle is a phrased used to refer to the flow of your kitchen between the three main points: the refrigerator, the range, and the sink. Designing your kitchen in any way that places obstacles in the middle of this triangle may eventually get the best of your nerves.

What is a French Door Refrigerator?


Thor Kitchen HRF3601F – A French Door Refrigerator

Not all refrigerators are created equal. They come in many different sizes, shapes, and designs. And, as they have transitioned over the years, various traits and characteristics have stood out in popularity. Currently, one of those traits is a refrigerator with French doors.

If you’re not familiar with this style, you may be wondering … what is a French Door refrigerator?

What is a French Door Refrigerator?

French doors are double doors that, when found in a home, offer a lot of light and open space to the area. They date back to the French Renaissance when symmetry was prominent in architecture, which is likely why they are referred to as “French doors.”

what is a french door refrigerator
Thor Kitchen TKF3601U – 36 Inch Freestanding Refrigerator

Initially, these types of doors were found in prestigious homes, but have become increasingly popular in the most extravagant – and least extravagant – residences everywhere.

Now, the concept of the open space French doors has made its way to your refrigerator.

An Overview of One of the Most Popular Styles

French door refrigerators are the latest trend in refrigerator design. These refrigerators have two refrigerator doors that open outward, with the split in the middle. They can open individually or both together. The idea is that by opening both, you are opening up the entire space – making everything clearly visible.


Thor Kitchen HRF3602BS French door refrigerator in black stainless steel

Most French door refrigerators come with one or two freezer drawers on the bottom. This is handy, as most people access the refrigerator more frequently. And, the larger bottom freezer drawers allow for more organized space.

A Range of Sizes and Colors

When choosing a French door refrigerator for your home, you want to consider the size. Unlike other refrigerator models that have one door swinging in one direction, this refrigerator has two doors that will affect the space on either side of the refrigerator. However, keep in mind that because the refrigerator door is cut in half, the amount of space required on each side will be less than if a full door was opening – technically making it a great candidate for a small space.

In addition, the bottom freezer drawer/s are often as deep as the refrigerator, so pulling them out is going to require space. You will want to make sure you measure correctly before you make a purchase. And, of course, allow for a little wiggle room.

Its All About the Layout

Whether they are truly bigger or not, French door refrigerators give you a great visual when you open the doors. It is all about the layout. There is no need to bend and twist and move stuff around. Instead, you will have everything openly visible and organized.

Most French door refrigerators have movable shelves, too. This allows you to pull them out and get a deeper view when necessary. It is also a great help when it comes to reaching hard-to-reach items.

The chiller drawers, produce drawers, and wide door bins provide lots of space for organizing your refrigerators. They allow you to easily see what you have – and help you to avoid gathering moldy items in unseen places.

Save Energy with Two Doors

French door refrigerators are a bit more costly than regular refrigerators. However, it is important to note that they can save you energy as well. Every single time you open the refrigerator door, you are letting out cool air and forcing the refrigerator to work harder.

But, with a French door refrigerator, you do not have to open both doors. This means you are releasing less cold air and, in turn, causing the refrigerator to not have to work as hard to replace it. This is a win for your wallet that will follow you as long as you have the refrigerator.

A Timeless Style

If you are looking to remodel your kitchen or just trying to seek a new refrigerator, French door models are the go-to refrigerator for designers. Simply put, they look good. But, they are also fit in nearly every design style. Sleek and shiny enough for the modern or industrial look, elegant enough for a traditional design style, and bright enough for a fun, contemporary kitchen, and so forth.

They are aesthetically pleasing, but that is not all that makes them desirable. The fact that they are incredibly functional takes the cake. It makes kitchens everywhere want to have a French door refrigerator.

Popular Features

Most French door refrigerators come with options that you may not see on other models. Here are a few examples for you to check out:

  • Many have door alarms which come in handy if you are often guilty of forgetting to shut the door (wasting energy).
  • Another feature is LED lighting that looks great, new, and fresh. Plus, this type of lighting is eco-friendly.
  • An inside camera that connects to your Wi-Fi and helps you remember what you need if you are at the grocery store and can’t remember.
  • Movable trays and bins. You can literally rearrange the layout of your refrigerator very easily whenever you want. Depending on your grocery purchases, you can increase or reduce space between shelves, etc.
  • One or two bottom freezer drawers allows you plenty of space to organize. And, unlike most freezers, these large drawers offer you ample space for large items. In addition, you are often able to change their layout as well, for added convenience.

Features vary from model to model, but, with the technology always increasing, so will the available features.

Conclusion

French door refrigerators are very popular and found in kitchens everywhere. The most popular come in shades of stainless steel and now, growing in popularity is black stainless steel. These functional, nice looking refrigerators can give you everything you are looking for.

  • Space
  • Layout control
  • Energy saving
  • Eye-pleasing design

And so much more.

The French architects knew what they were doing when they created this wide-open, bright, symmetrical door design. In fact, it is so versatile that it works well on doors, windows, and refrigerators.

Welcome to your future refrigerator – organized, easily accessible, and beautiful: the French door refrigerator.

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