Why You Should Buy Dirt Cheap Vegetable Peelers

Peeling vegetables is a task that contributes to both presentation and flavor in various dishes. This meticulous process is often done to enhance texture, eliminate bitterness, and improve overall palatability. Root vegetables like carrots and potatoes are commonly peeled to eliminate dirt, blemishes, and any bitter outer layers, resulting in a smoother, more uniform appearance and a more refined and delicate mouthfeel. In the case of fruits and vegetables with tougher skins, such as cucumbers or eggplants, peeling can enhance the taste by reducing the intensity of certain flavors. Of course, one result of peeling produce is that it can make certain foods look much more appealing, making it as much of an aesthetic technique as it is a practical one.


Whether preparing a crisp salad, a velvety soup, or a perfectly roasted side dish, the art of peeling vegetables is a fundamental skill that every chef needs. To peel food effectively, you'll need a vegetable peeler. While the assumption when buying any kitchen tool is that you should find something a bit pricier that will last a lifetime, that's not the case with peelers. In fact, when looking for the perfect vegetable peeler, the cheaper the better.

Vegetable peelers wear out quickly

The delicate, hard-working blade of a vegetable peeler can quickly get nicked and rusted after heavy use. Once a vegetable peeler has surpassed its usefulness, it can take a lot of effort to get it back in working order, which is why it's best to just replace it. This is a sentiment shared by celebrity chef and cookbook author Ina Garten. As Garten explained to Food & Wine, "Vegetable peelers get rusty, they get dull, and they're very cheap, so you can just throw them out and buy new ones." That's why Garten says she tosses out her vegetable peelers "every once in a while." If the practice of regularly replacing vegetable peelers is good enough for the Barefoot Contessa herself, it's good enough for us.


How often you should throw away your vegetable peeler depends entirely on how much you use it. If you don't peel vegetables very frequently, even a cheap vegetable peeler can last well over a year. As long as your peeler is free of rust and is otherwise undamaged, there's no need to dispose of it.

Keeping your peeler in good shape

Vegetable peelers can be easily replaced, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't take care of your property. Cheap peelers are still worth maintaining if only to reduce waste. Make sure to keep your vegetable peeler clean, as any caked-on food will make it harder to use. The key to ensuring your vegetable peeler lasts as long as possible is to make sure it stays dry. That means that after you wash it, you should use a clean cloth or paper towel to remove any excess moisture and prevent rust. Finally, be sure to store your vegetable peeler someplace where it won't be crushed or bent by other kitchen tools.


When on the hunt for a new vegetable peeler, look for something with a sharp blade and without too many bells and whistles. Vegetable peelers only need to serve one function — peeling produce effectively — so as long as you find a model that can do that, you'll be in good shape. It may be a good idea to buy peelers in bulk, like two or three at a time, so that if one breaks while you're using it, you'll have another one ready to go.