The best kitchen timers

If you don't own a cooking timer, you're missing out on a great multifunctional tool that will make your culinary life much easier. Simply set the amount of time desired and take the portable timer with you wherever you go in the house. You'll be assured that you won't ever overcook a batch of cookies or burn a roast again! You'll also be able to cook meats to the proper temperature for food safety with total confidence. Cooking timers can also double as multipurpose home timers that can be used to keep track of exercising, homework progress, time-outs and more.

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Types of Kitchen Timers

Most people are familiar with old-fashioned egg timers. These simple devices contained sand and were capable of accurately keeping track of a small period of time, between 1 and 10 minutes (though typically 3 minutes – the time it takes to cook an egg). You simply flipped the egg timer over to start the sand-powered "clock," and when the sand ran out of the top half, your egg was ready. Today, you can find digital egg timers that replicate the look and function of hourglasses – they even display digitalized grains of sand on a screen!

Of course, there are other high-quality digital cooking timers that can keep track of longer periods of time. Digital or electronic timers come with a variety of features, including a built-in clock, calendar and memory function. These digital timers are easy to use – simply set the minutes with a touch of a button. An AA battery is usually sufficient to run your digital timer for several months or more.

Dial or Countdown Timers

Finally, consider an analog or dial countdown timer for your kitchen. These traditional timers have an easy-to-set dial, usually for any time in between one minute and two or three hours. Turn the dial and you're ready to go – the dial will slowly turn and count down to zero, sounding a "ding" when it's time for you to check the oven. One important advantage that dial timers have over digital timers is that they don't need a battery or electrical source. The simple mechanism inside your dial timer is powered by the mere act of cranking the dial!