Unique Kitchen Essentials That Stood Out At TIHS 2024

In a sea of colorful tumblers, shiny metallic cookware, and energetic cooking demonstrations, it can be hard to stand out. Pacing the aisles, which tick up to at least booth 8700, it's also easy to get distracted or even lost. Perseverance, however, pays off. The Inspired Home Show (TIHS) 2024 was packed with fresh thinking and unique items.


And while some of the kitchen accessories brought flash and eye-catching pizazz, others offered quietly exciting ideas that could make a big impact on home cooking. Clever dish soap pointed to a future of eco-friendly cleaning, and an attachable saucepan grip made us reconsider accessible products for the stovetop. The products often had sustainability baked into their design, as well as convenience.

These are just a handful of the thought-provoking tools circulating TIHS. We were also impressed by the kitchen appliances at TIHS and the clever food storage solutions lining the aisles at Chicago's McCormick Place Convention Center. Although the 2024 show has come to an end, we'll have these unique kitchen essentials in mind to think about as we look to next year.


Kitchinventions Pan Buddy

This attachable plastic tool grips onto the handles of pans and offers a vertical handhold. In doing so, it gives users more leverage to lift heavy or awkward pans while also being gentler on joints. For those with wrist pain, mobility issues, or a weak grip, in particular, this could be a game-changing kitchen accessory.


As it's only heat resistant up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, the Pan Buddy isn't suited for all kitchen activities, however, those who make frequent stovetop meals can test out its universal grip. To use it, slide the plastic tube onto the pot handle, twist the top of the vertical grip to tighten, and then grab and go.

Nellie's Dish Butter & Nellie's Dish Stick + Refills

The first thing to notice about Nellie's is its packaging. Jaunty designs splashed across the company's tins of laundry soda and dish cubes have a vintage feel, while the dish butter sits on the shelves in a powder green ceramic dish. That is by design. The zero-waste dish soap comes in useful containers intended to be reused and repurposed after the cleaner is used up, explained the Nellie's team.


The dish butter is a solid soap, and the dish stick contains a solid stick of soap built-in to its center — a feature that makes it unique among scrub brushes that normally contain liquid soap. Marketing director Paula Grigg said, "Nobody is doing solid soap inside their brushes." The cleaning products contain only a few ingredients and lathered well when in use at TIHS.

Brisa Rack 1.0

Couch potatoes and jetsetters alike continue to embrace reusable water bottles and tumblers. It's only logical that savvy business owners come up with new solutions to make care and cleaning easier. The Brisa Rack 1.0 is an electronic dryer designed for what the company calls "reusables."


Available for order starting in late April, the appliance features four silver tubes that blow out air and display multiple buttons to customize drying times. Customers use the device not only for water bottles, but for baby bottles, reusable baggies, and thermoses, too. Though it may not appeal to desert dwellers, this has big potential for those living in humid climates.

Evriholder Cocktail Smoker

The Evriholder cocktail smoker offers home mixologists the chance to infuse campfire flavor into their drinks. To use it, bartenders aim a hand torch over the brand's metal puck. The metal has a special divot to load with the wood chips of your choosing, allowing you to pair the wood notes with your booze. The disk has a ring of silicone to stick to and protect glasses, as well as an accompanying top to hold in the smoke.


Another Global Innovation Award  nominee, the compact design can fit on multiple glassware sizes. The process takes about two minutes to finish, so guests won't have to wait long to taste-test the party trick. Cooks can also use the tool to infuse dairy, nuts, and other small bites. Smoky fig baked brie, anyone?


The Cerapotta introduces an interesting proposition: Coffee brewed using a porous Japanese ceramic. Instead of shiny stainless steel cones or disposable paper filters, the clay cone filters coffee through tiny pores in the ceramic. Each filter is crafted in Japan using traditional Hasami porcelain-making techniques, according to the brand, though the exact clay recipe remains a secret.


Surprisingly lightweight, each cone features line markers on the inside of the design to help users measure their coffee. The team emphasized the pared-down equipment. All you need is the conical filter, and a cup, to brew and go. A member of the team on hand at TIHS added that the pieces are "designed with a deep respect for nature."