Every kitchen needs a few essential tools to help prepare for successful cooking and baking.If you’re beginning to build your kitchen tool kit, don’t feel like you need to get everything at once. Many items can be found at thrift shops and won’t cost too much. For example, my best glass mixing bowl came from The Salvation Army. If you have the funds, I suggest investing in a good (doesn’t need to be top of the line) chef’s knife and paring knife. Knives do the most work in the kitchen and it’s important to have a knife that will keep a sharp edge. A sharp knife is a safe knife.
Maintain your cooking tools by cleaning them right after use so they can last a long time. A good knife can last a lifetime – my parents have had the same cooking knives for 32 years.
A well-stocked kitchen can help you relax and have fun when cooking or baking. Learning some kitchen skills and preparing your work area can help as well. Here are tips if you are new to cooking or baking:
- Read the whole recipe before getting started to be sure you have all the ingredients and tools. Gather all of your cooking or baking tools and recipe ingredients before you begin.
- Consider taking a cooking class. Check with your local community center.
- Join a community kitchen in your area to share cooking and learning with others.
Use this as a guide to stock up your kitchen with everything you need to make cooking and baking easy and fun.
|Essential Kitchen Tools||Design and material suggestions||Notes|
|Food prep equipment|
|Chef’s knife, 8-10 inches (20-25 cm)||
High carbon stainless steel
|Paring knife, about 4 inches (10 cm)||
High carbon stainless steel
|Cutting board x 2||
1 x wood or plastic
1 x plastic
|Can opener||It should have a sharp edge.|
|Peeler||Check that it’s sharp.|
|Grater||Metal||Check that it’s sharp.|
|Measuring cups||Metal or plastic||At a minimum, the following cup sizes: ¼ cup, 1/3 cup, ½ cup, and 1 cup|
|Measuring spoons||Metal or plastic||At a minimum, the following sizes: ¼ teaspoon, 1/3 teaspoon, ½ teaspoon, and 1 teaspoon, and 1 tablespoon|
|Mixing bowl s x2, medium or large||Glass, ceramic or stainless steel||A bowl big enough for combining and mixing ingredients for your recipes.|
|Stove top cooking equipment|
|Frying pan (skillet), 10-12 inch (25 x 30 cm)||Stainless steel or cast iron||
|Thick bottomed sauce pan, with lid, small to medium||Stainless steel||
|Thick bottomed soup pot with lid, large||Stainless steel or enamelled cast iron||
|Mixing spoon, large||Wood, metal or silicone|
|Spatula, stove top safe||Metal or silicone|
|Strainer||Metal||The strainer needs to stand up to hot liquids and ingredients.|
|Oven cooking equipment|
|Baking pan||Glass or metal||A range of sizes will work. If you usually cook for one, try a 9 x 9 inch (23 x 23 cm) or if you cook for two of more, try a 9 x 13 inch (23 x 33 cm).|
|Cookie sheet with sides, 10 x 15 x 1 inches (25 x 38 x 2.5 cm)||Metal||A range of sizes will work. The sides should be at least 1 inch (2.5 cm) high.|
|Oven mitts||Cotton or silicone|
|Other useful tools|
|Thermometer||Digital instant-read||Thermometers help you know when your food is fully cooked and safe to eat.|
|Reusable storage containers||Glass and plastic||Purchase a variety of sizes for packed lunches, freezing and refrigerating left overs.|
Shopping Sense: Planning