Real Simple’s mission, through its 16 years, has been to simplify your life with smart finds like these.
Chalkboard Slow Cooker
Between basketball practice, holiday parties, and the elusive date night—slow cookers are a go-to winter essential. This model’s chalkboard exterior provides a smart upgrade on the old classic. Label your dishes, warn of allergies at parties, or even leave detailed serving instructions. Don’t want to deal with scrubbing off the stubborn remnants of last night’s dinner? Its 7-quart stoneware pot is dishwasher safe.
To buy: $30, target.com.
Love adding the flavor of whole herbs and spices to your soups, but hate fishing them out after cooking? This punctured spoon allows you to simply slip your preferred seasoning into its bowl then stir to steep. When finished, just open the lid and toss your herbs. As an added bonus, the handle doubles as a useful herb stripper.
To buy: $8, amazon.com.
Reusable Sandwich Wrap
Never run out of sandwich bags while packing school lunches again—opt for this reusable wrap instead. Made from beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin-infused cotton, this wrap is moisture-resistant and naturally antibacterial (as well as environmentally friendly). Its design means crumbs won’t get stuck in the seams like other cloth or plastic pouches. Just wash in your sink with cool water and dish soap and leave to air dry. It couldn’t bee easier!
To buy: $10, uncommongoods.com.
Pop-Out Pet Food Scoop
Stop fishing around in an oversized kibble bag for that crumby plastic container you call a “scoop.” This clever design has a pop out, silicone measuring cup to dish out Fido’s food. When you’re done, just pop it back in place and use the handle's built-in clip to secure the bag shut. The easy-to-clean device is available in three sizes, too, so you’ll always scoop the perfect sized portion for your pup.
To buy: $7, amazon.com.
Portable Booster Seat
Keep your tot safe in any car with this portable booster seat. Rather than lifting your child up to an adult’s height, it pulls the seatbelt down to secure them in all the right places. The best part? This lightweight, compact device can fit nearly anywhere—in the glove compartment for everyday use, your carry-on for taxi rides, or even your child’s backpack for carpooling.
To buy: $40, amazon.com.
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