The pandemic has forced most of us to spend a lot of time at home this year.
So, if you're still looking for some gift ideas, you may want to consider something for the home or kitchen.
Consumer Reports' home and appliance reporter Haniyah Rae has some recommendations based on their reviews.
- Hamilton Beach 49465R 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker
If there’s one thing we’ve consistently learned in our thousands of exhaustive product tests, it’s that you don’t always have to spend top dollar to get a well-performing product that satisfies. Coffeemakers are no exception. The $20 Hamilton Beach 49465R 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker is an extraordinary value. It beat dozens of pricier models in CR’s battery of tests. Brew performance rates Excellent, and it can be programmed to have piping fresh coffee waiting in the morning.
- Breadman BK1050S Professional Bread Maker
It’s absolutely a great gift. It turns out that making bread has been a popular pandemic hobby for stuck-at-home Americans. It’s actually really simple to do with a breadmaker. Our testers really liked the Breadman BK1050S Professional Bread Maker, which costs $130. It yielded nicely golden loaves of white bread and medium-to-dark loaves of whole wheat, which passed muster in our testing. Also, if you want one for yourself, you’ll be able to share the gift of bread. That’s important this year because we know from a recent Consumer Reports survey that half of Americans won’t be traveling to see family as much this year, or hosting for the holidays. Send bread instead!
- Zojirushi NP-GBC05 rice cooker
If you have a rice-lover on your list, we really recommend the Zojirushi NP-GBC05 rice cooker. It’s the all-around best-performing and most foolproof rice cooker we tested. It consistently makes beautiful rice, and our testers also found it easy and intuitive to use. It’s available now for about $280.
- Cuisinart Green Gourmet Cookware Set
For the home chef on your list, you can’t go wrong with the Cuisinart Green Gourmet Cookware Set. It’s a 12-piece nonstick set that aced all our key cooking tests. Overstock.com has it for $230.
- Drinkmate Carbonated Beverage Maker or SodaStream Fizzi
If you have a seltzer-guzzler on your list, this could be worth it. If you spend $85 on the least expensive model we tested and make one liter a day instead of buying seltzer at Walmart, for example, you’ll break even in five months. If you’re looking for a very good machine at a reasonable price, check out the SodaStream Fizzi. It scores almost as well as the top model in our ratings for making seltzer with a consistent amount of bubbles, but it costs $45 less. It’s among the easiest soda makers to use, too—insert your bottle top in a clamp, push the clamp into place, and push start.