Galleys are small – unless you are on a mega yacht or catamaran. The small size is also a safety factor as you don’t really want to go flying across the cabin when working with knives or hot items. So small can be a positive.
The challenge is how you organize and what you have onboard so that the small space is not a daily source of frustration. Items that are dual-purpose, collapsible, or unbreakable are all key.
Many of the items we use are not restricted to boat use – they are equally functional in a full-sized kitchen, RV, or camper.
Microwave Pasta Cooker
Dan came across this and decided to give it a try in the RV. It works amazing well and eliminates all the steam from boiling water for pasta. Works so well that we brought it along on the boat for when we can use the microwave. Would not recommend it if you are cooking pasta for a crowd but for two people it's perfect.
13" Silicone Splatter Screen
We got this for the RV but it would work equally well on the boat. We've used it not only as a spatter screen but also as a trivet to protect the countertops.
This collapsible teapot has a different handle and lid configuration than the one Dan purchased many years ago and appears to be a safer design than our version. When (and if) our existing collapsible tea kettle falls apart, this is what we'll get.
AeroPress Coffee/Espresso Maker
While Dan drinks tea every morning, I love my coffee and I like it strong. Upon recommendation of a coffee connoisseur I once worked with, I purchased an AeroPress. I love it. I mean I LOVE IT. If you follow the directions, it’s simple to use and extremely easy to clean (virtually self-cleaning). It uses one tiny paper filter so there is minimal waste.
Silicone Bundt Pan
I realized part way through our first full sailing season onboard that we didn’t have much in the way of baking pans. Not that we need many but when you’re trying to figure out what to do with 3 cups of blueberries having a cake pan or any type of bakeware can be helpful. But bakeware takes a lot of space. While in Toronto I used my sister’s silicone bread pan – issue solved as they squish and can be tucked into small spaces. My first purchase was a silicone bundt pan which I used recently to make a kick-ass rum (Rhum!) cake. Note: when using silicone bakeware, you need to put it on a cookie sheet for stability when putting it in or removing from the oven.
When our previous camp-style toaster rusted out, we purchased this GSI stainless steel toaster. While it only does one slice at a time, it’s very fast, easy to clean and folds flat– taking virtually no space. It also comes with a storage pouch.
Cast Iron Heat Diffuser
Dan loves cooking on gas stoves but sometimes it can be hard to control the heat at very low temperatures. His solution? Use a heat diffuser! Works great on the Force 10 stove that we have on the boat.
When a blender is not an option, this small chopper is amazingly effective at making salsas, guacamole, grating cheese and more.
Universal Stone Cleaner
We first found this in a little store in Goderich and used it to clean/polish our countertops. The results were amazing! Dan has also used it to clean the gelcoat in the cockpit - much easier than using some of the marine polishes.
Dyson Cordless Vacuum
Yes - they're expensive. But they work great for cleaning the interior of the boat and the various attachments help clean the weird corners. And it breaks down so it can be stored easily in a small closet. Looking for a wet/dry vacuum - check the Dewalt in the Tool section.
A great collapsible bowl and this one gets used more than any other. It’s large enough (3 qt) for Dan to mix up veggies for grilling (and keep the oil and seasonings contained within the bowl). We also have the 1.5 quart and a 5 quart. We also use it to serve pasta dishes or salads when we have company. Added bonus - the grippy bottom stays put on the counter when the boat is healing and in the RV when going around corners!
Collapsible Microwave Cover
We have a microwave onboard, which we can only use when connected to shorepower or running the engine. When we do use the microwave, it helps to have a splatter screen over the food to keep things from exploding all over the interior. And of course we found a collapsible microwave cover! Works great in the RV as well.
Small Lazy Susan
We have a couple of hard-to-reach spaces in the galley area and this small lazy susan is the perfect solution for utilizing the space and making the items more accessible.
We use these bins like these to keep our freezer/refrigerator organized in both the boat and the RV.
Collapsible Dish Rack
And what would a collapsible dish tub do without a collapsible dish rack? It would be lonely and sad! This is actually our second dish rack. A folding rack we got at West Marine served its purpose on Blue Loon, but it was too small for Gaviidae. We also purchased a drain pan to put under this.
Collapsible Dish Tub
We found this collapsible dish tub on Amazon; ours is aqua and white. We’ve used it for rinsing dishes, laundry, general catch-all, etc. And when it is not in use it collapses down and fits under the galley sink.
Lunatec Aquabot Sprayer
We purchased the Lunatec Aquabot Sprayer years ago. Our intention was to use it for rinsing dishes as a way of conserving our fresh water reserves. It works great for that but we also found it very useful when cleaning the cockpit for blasting dirt out of small crevices behind the dodger, in tight corners and such. You can also buy the Aquabot Sprayer Tube Extension giving you more flexibility when using it with dishes, etc.
Reusable Produce Bags
Pretty much everytime we check out at a grocery store we are asked where we got our reusable produce bags. Rather than use plastic bags, we found these at a Coop and paid a ridiculous price for them. Now you can find them on Amazon for considerably less and there are numerous options from mesh to canvas. We like the mesh bags as they are easier to wash.
We both happen to love grapefruit but my mothers way of cutting the grapefruit in half and then dissecting each section as well as the outer perimeter it a pain in the butt! Why it took us so long to find out there are spoons specifically designed for grapefruit, I’ll never know! This particular spoon comes as a set of four for a very reasonable price.
Collapsible Water Bottle - 17 ounce
I bought a 21-ounce version years ago and use it on a regular basis especially when I travel. It comes in a variety of colors but since mine is purple, I call it Barney! This newer version has a flip up handle making it easier to clip on to things. It's available in 17 ounce and 25 ounce.