must-have cooking tools for your kitchen
There are some cooking tools that I absolutely cannot live without. They’re pretty essential to my cooking. Want to know what they are so you can get your own? This is also a good guide for tools I mention that I use in my recipes. In case you’re not sure what they are, look no further than below!
small kitchen tools
- Mandoline – This is a great tool you can use to get ultra-thin slices of veggies or any other food. Think gratin, a veggie carpaccio, or beautiful thinly shaved Parmesan!
- Paring Knife – This is a great basic paring knife for anything small you need to cut.
- Assorted Cookie Scoops – Not just for cookie dough! I use these for scooping meatballs or other savory items when you have a big batch of something and you want all pieces the same size.
- Microplane – This is an ABSOLUTE MUST HAVE! I use this constantly and is one of my favorite tools of all time. This is great for zesting citrus, for getting those gorgeous thin shavings of fresh parmesan, or for grating garlic and ginger too!
- Silpat – This is amazing for baking, nothing sticks! I use it for meringues, candied nuts, chocolate bark, etc.
- Kitchen Scale – Great for baking when you need exact measurements. This one is in grams and ounces!
- Meat Thermometer – When you need to make sure your meat is cooked perfectly.
- Spider – This is a tool I mostly use when frying and I need to fish out food from the oil.
- Wooden Salt Container – I always have it on my counter right next to my stove. Makes it so easy to take a pinch of Kosher salt!
- Wire Mesh Strainers – Great for when you want an extra smooth product, or when you need to strain something with very small particles. These are my favorite.
- Kitchen Tongs – I use tongs basically every time I stand at my stove. It’s great to have two different sizes, and I like the tongs with the rubber ends in case I am using a non-stick (no scratching)!
- Fish Spatula – Really great for many things, not just fish! It’s super flexible and slides easily under anything, making it easy to flip things in a pan.
- Peeler – This is my favorite peeler!
- Oven Thermometer – It’s important that your oven is the temperature you set it to! Otherwise what you make may not turn out correctly.
- Potato Masher – The easiest way to mash potatoes!
- Meat Mallet – This is great for tenderizing thick cuts of meat, like chicken breasts.
pots & pans & Bowls
- Mini Glass Pinch Prep Bowls – It’s so important to set up your mise en place before cooking, and these bowls help so much!
- 10-Piece Glass Prep Bowls – I love this set because glass is microwave and heat-safe.
- Caraway Nonstick Ceramic Cookware Set – This is the exact set I have, but other color options are available. I love these because they’re non-toxic and they are truly nonstick. I’ve had them for about 3 years now and they’re still in perfect condition. They work on any stovetop (gas or induction). These are not for searing – you won’t get a crispy crust because of the nonstick. Plus, you shouldn’t use really high heat with these pots and pans. Use another pan for high heat searing.
- Cast Iron Skillet (Set of 2 with Lids) – I love my cast irons and I prefer to buy them with lids, just in case a recipe calls for one. It’s great to have them in 2 different sizes as well, in case you’re cooking for a crowd.
- Stainless Steel Frying Pan – Stainless steel is conducts heat very well and is great when you want crispy-skinned fish or a nice brown crust on a chicken breast or steak.
- Stainless Steel High-Sided Saute Pan – Great for risotto, and stews where you want a good sear on your meat.
- Half Sheet Pan with Cooling Racks – These are great sheet pans that fit so much food on them. I like having the cooling racks too!
- Quarter-Size Sheet Pans – People usually have the regular sized sheet pans but not the smaller ones. I use the smaller ones a lot when just cooking for me and Robbie.
- 8 oz. Ramekins – Great for souffles, personal baked eggs, creme brûlées, mousse, puddings, lots of different items.
- Springform Baking Pan – So important for baking.
- Grill Pan – Love having a grill pan. I can use it during the winter months indoors on the stove and still have those gorgeous grill marks!
- Vitamix A3500 – I use this almost every single day for smoothies, sauces, soups, dips, any type of puree. I don’t know what I would do without it!
- Food Processor – I use this for dips like hummus, for making aioli, and also for chopping nuts and blender graham crackers for a yummy cheesecake crust.
- Mini (3.5 cup) Food Processor – Isn’t it so frustrating when you’re only making a small portion of a dressing or dip and your food processor is too big? This is the perfect solution and also an appliance I use quite often. I have it in Aqua Blue!
- Spice Grinder – I love buying some spices whole and then grinding them myself. They stay fresher for longer if they are kept whole, before they are ground into a powder. A spice grinder isn’t super expensive an it’s tiny – it won’t take up any room on yur counter and can be kept in a drawer.
- Air Fryer – I love using my air-fryer at home when I’m trying to be a big healthier. This one air-fries, air-roasts, bakes, reheats, and dehydrates.
- Immersion Blender – This is a really useful tool to have at home, and it comes with it’s own blending cup!