Whether you are an avid cook or just getting started, there are certain basic culinary tools that every home chef needs. These handy gadgets will help make things easier and more organized when cooking in the kitchen. Here are the top ten tools you need to whip up your favorite culinary creations. Hurry, your kitchen is calling!
Knives: Knives are the most important tools in the kitchen, since they do everything from chopping and slicing, to dicing and mincing. A set of quality, sharp knives makes cooking quick and easy — and safer. A cheap, dull knife makes you work harder, and is more likely to slip and cause injury. You will need a Chef’s Knife, a paring knife, a serrated knife, a slicing knife, and a honing tool for sharpening. Hold different kinds to see what works best for you before buying, make sure it feels natural in your hand, and practice proper techniques when handling.
Cutting Boards: Cutting boards are very handy, and inexpensive, so purchase at least two — one for fresh produce, bread, and cooked foods, and the other for raw meats. Having a separate board for raw meats helps to avoid cross contamination. Choose wooden butchers block or plastic boards, and clean thoroughly after each use.
Mixing Bowls: A good set of mixing bowls suits many different cooking and baking needs. Choose from glass, stainless steel, or plastic that’s dishwasher safe and stackable for easy storage. Lidded varieties are also available, allowing you to prep and serve in the bowls, and then store leftovers in the fridge for later. A fast and simple solution with no extra mess!
Measuring Spoons and Cups: Like cutting boards, you should work with two sets, one for wet and one for dry ingredients. Liquid cups usually have handles and spouts for pouring. It’s important to know you’re using the right amount of an ingredient, especially when it comes to baking!
Bakeware: Be sure to have a roasting pan, a pizza pan, cookie and muffin sheets, two round cakes pans, and rectangular, loaf, and square glass baking dishes on hand.
Pans and Skillets: Both small and medium skillets and saucepans are essential. Keeping a large stockpot in your cabinet is also handy when cooking for parties, and big family dinners. Be sure to look for non-stick and stainless steel varieties. Take note; do not use metal utensils on nonstick surfaces as it can affect their surfaces.
Colander: Colanders are useful for straining pasta, and rinsing fruits, and vegetables. Choose a large colander for pasta and rinsing large portions of produce, and keep a smaller colander on hand for smaller items like grapes and berries. We recommend selecting varieties with feet and handles to help you get a better grasp when pouring liquids.
Utensils: Stick to basics like tongs, spatulas, peelers, graters, a rolling pin, wire whisks, slotted spoons, wooden spoons, and a ladle. Features like non-stick, heat resistant, and dishwasher safe are good choices to lean towards.
Meat Thermometer: A meat thermometer allows you to cook meets to a perfect and safe temperature. Undercooking can be unsafe, while overcooking can make food dry and tasteless.
Small Appliances: Small appliances work just as hard as their larger companions. Blenders and food processors offer different speeds and accessories to make just about anything from juices, smoothies, soups, dips, salsas, and fast chopping. Slow cookers are a lifesaver for busy homeowners who want a good meal, and breakfast would not be the same without toaster ovens and coffee makers. Whether you prefer a hand or stand up variety, mixers are an invaluable tool when whipping up baked goods and even mashed potatoes.
Willow Lane Cabinetry offers kitchen accessories for all your cooking and baking needs. Choose from helpful items like a heavy-duty mixer lift, a trimmable knife block, cookware organizers, door mounted spice racks, culinary prep carts, and more — Because every home chef needs (and wants) a beautiful, organized kitchen most of all.
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