10 Food and Drink Inventions We Didn't Need

When it comes to culinary ingenuity these 10 gadgets truly embody mediocrity.


"Dude, I was camping and forgot my spork — I almost starved!"

"Oh, great. You opened the wine bottle but didn't finish all the Grüner. How are we supposed to close it up again so the wine doesn't spoil?"

"I have a dining room full of brunch customers, dozens of eggs, and a pot of boiling water, but the egg poacher broke. Guess I have to send everybody home. Wait. You can poach eggs without an egg poacher? Shut up! Eggs Benedict for everyone!"

Bet you hear stuff like that all the time, right? Yeah, sure. The fact is that as many essential inventions and discoveries as there have been in the world of food and drink throughout the eons (check out The Daily Meal's picks for the 50 most important), there are just as many failed, pointless, and flat-out stupid culinary gadgets cluttering history's kitchen drawers.

You know them too well. You've seen these flimsy, plastic gadgets dice, splice, and not suffice on late-night television in between those infomercials for magic abs and sculpted thighs. In fact, you may have bought a few of the things before it dawned on you just how useless these one-trick phonies — uni-taskers, we call them — really were. Hey, we all make mistakes in the kitchen. 

As we took time to carefully identify and consider the 50 most important inventions (and discoveries) in food and drink, we couldn't help but think about their opposites, too. We're not necessarily talking about the dumbest kitchen inventions ever (though there are a few of those), but inventions that embody true mediocrity when it comes to culinary ingenuity — gadgets demonstrating, if nothing else, that it's all about the art of the pitch, and that people will often happily purchase what they already own.

Click for 10 Food and Drink Inventions We Didn't Need.


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10 Comments

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How significantly of an special post, keep on posting much better half ckdekagdekbeffde

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I'll be Honest I read a lot of these items and in truth The Daily Menu and it's sister, The Daily Beast have no Clue. E.G. they have an arctical about Useless salad ingrediance. The stuff they say to subsitute with I can not do. I have Stage 3 Ranle Failure (Kidney Disease) and most of that stuff is high in Potassium which is a bad thing for someone like me. Also, the trick to a good meal is to make the meal Satisfying to the palate. This means you're not going to feel as hungery later. So please do use a BIG Fav. Thing about this stuff a little more before you write, a lot of use can't eat meals they way you think. SOME people do have Dietary restrictions to work with.

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I just got a virus by clicking through to you from CNN. Thanks a hell of a lot.

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"Dumb" like a fox. They made money didn't they? That's why they were invented.

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I love the egg porcher, garlic press and who does'nt like he blooming onion? Come on now, one guys useless invention csan be another's fav. gadget !

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It also cuts weight when back packing. I disagree with the spork being on this list. I don't go back packing without one.

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Isn't the point of a spork to cut down on plastic waste? It doesn't need to be a galvanized utensil, but you've got to admit it has a nifty job in the disposable world.

A lot of the others seemed designed for people who are short on time and/or culinary skills but desire specific foods and don't want the hassle of actually using knives. That's not so much useless as... Well, I'm sure there's something judgmental to be said about them.

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The author has obviously never attempted to shove the a wine cork back into the bottle. Much harder than it sounds.

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Garlic press useless? My Italian grandmother who came from Tuscany in 1900, may she rest in peace, would slap you to Calabria and back. I still have the one she owned. And I'd be waiting in line behind her for dissing my quesadilla maker! No, seriously - each to his or her own, but these two are things I really appreciate in my kitchen. For that matter, what would KFC's plastic coleslaw be without a plastic spork to eat it with? I give you 7 out of 10. - The Old Wolf (Grand High Culinary Inquisitor)

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Most of these are spot on, but there were a couple that I think really are fantastic inventions that I use regularly:

Some of us like to drink wine frequently, but not in large quantities, as recommended by the medical community and non-alcoholics everywhere. The wine savers are great if you're only drinking a glass or less per day and want the bottle to last all week. Not everyone wants to polish off an entire bottle every time they drink.

And yes, garlic from the press IS better than minced, depending on how you want to use it. If you're planning to coat something with garlic, pressed is definitely more effective than minced.

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