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The Top Kitchen Essentials Every Kitchen Needs

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I get asked ALL the time about which kitchen tools, gadgets, and appliances that I recommend and love. There are SO many options out there, I know it can be hard to choose sometimes. I have created this Kitchen Shopping Guide with you in mind – so you can easily find the best basic tools you need for your kitchen!

There are so many adorable, cute, quirky and fun kitchen supplies out there that sometimes its hard to limit yourself to just the essentials.

But unless you have an endless supply of cabinets and drawers, buying just the essentials will really help keep your kitchen neat and orderly!
It’s best to start with quality tools – its important to think about how long the items will last, what materials they are made of, and if they are actually functional.

Whether you want to keep a minimalist kitchen, you are just starting out, or you are looking to flesh out your existing stock, I’ve totally got you covered! I have taken the guesswork out of figuring out which things to buy by assembling for you the best cookware, bakeware, gadgets, appliances and more that I actually own, use and love!

Essential Cookware

  • A [easyazon_link identifier=”B000N501BK” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]large dutch oven (affiliate link)[/easyazon_link] is perfect for stovetop, oven, or campfire. You can bake bread, roast meat, bake a cobbler, just about anything you can think of in these. Get a 5 or 6 quart!
  • Cast iron skillets are a must. They are my favorite cookware ever, and what I use almost every day. There are so many things you can do with them. I recommend having both a [easyazon_link identifier=”B0008G2W2U” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]flat griddle[/easyazon_link]and a [easyazon_link identifier=”B00006JSUB” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]12″ skillet[/easyazon_link]. If you want to check out why they are my favorite, what you can do with them, and how to take care of them – read this article.
  • Pots and pans, for sure! I would definitely recommend [easyazon_link identifier=”B00008CM68″ locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]these pans[/easyazon_link]. I’ve used them for 8 years and they still look brand new. Plus I love how the handles stay cool while you are cooking with them.

Essential Bakeware

  • a great [easyazon_link identifier=”B000Q3D95Y” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]baking sheet set[/easyazon_link] will allow you to cook and bake a variety of things. Its good to have one with a rim and one without a rim.
  • a great [easyazon_link identifier=”B000FCD118″ locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]9×13 pan[/easyazon_link] with a lid is a must! Not only can you bake cakes and casseroles, but you can store cookies, muffins, and more. Seriously, the lid is the best part!
  • A good set of baking/cooling racks come in really handy. Make sure you get ones that can be used in the oven and make them work double duty – not only can they be used to cool hot pans and cookies, but they can also be used to bake chicken, jerky, and more.

Essential Appliances

  • A [easyazon_link identifier=”B003OATAZ4″ locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]Crock Pot[/easyazon_link] can be used year round, and for so many things!

Essential Utensils, Gadgets and Tools

  • This glass Mixing Bowl Set is my favorite – it comes with so many different sizes, you will never run out. They are so gorgeous you can also use them as serving bowls as well.
  • I also happen to love this Batter Bowl with a lid – its perfect for mixing and storing all kinds of things, especially if you need to mix something up now and store it in the fridge for later.
  • A [easyazon_link identifier=”B000O1DMAU” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]large metal colander[/easyazon_link] – You want one that is large enough to strain a big pot of potatoes on Thanksgiving, but with holes small enough not to let spaghetti escape, and one that is sturdy enough to last.
  • A [easyazon_link identifier=”B007TUQF9O” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]sieve[/easyazon_link] is good to have for straining liquids – whether you are making baby food, or straining seeds out of lemon juice, having a small mesh strainer is a good thing!
  • wooden spoons are a must. Get as many as you can. Cheap ones often split and splinter when you wash them in the dishwasher, so buy some quality ones that can take the abuse.
  • this can opener is the best I’ve found. It’s easy to use, and it leaves a smooth edge to all cans, meaning no sharp edges to cut yourself!
  • a good cheese grater that has different sized holes for different kinds of cheese, but is still storage friendly.
  • A [easyazon_link identifier=”B004VLYQGS” locale=”US” tag=”theginwhi-20″]zester[/easyazon_link] is great for hard cheeses, garlic, nutmeg, citrus and more!
  • cutting boards – make sure you have at least one that is dishwasher safe and designated only for raw meats. I keep wooden ones on hand for only cutting fruits and veggies, too.
  • rubber spatulas are great for many things, and this one is the best there is!
  • whisk
  • Measuring spoons and measuring cups. And yes, you need one specifically for liquids, too.

You might notice that I left a rather big things off of this list: knives. I mean, yes you DO need knives! But I think these are things that you should pick and choose based on what you are actually going to use. Often we don’t need the entire knife set, and there is no point in purchasing a deboning knife if you are never planning gone deboning a chicken, you know? It is easier (and cheaper) to get quality knives if you buy them individually. I also recommend purchasing the ones that feel good in your hand – they fit well and you feel comfortable using them!

Looking for other great gift-buying guides? Check these out!

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Lois Carter Crawford

Wednesday 4th of May 2016

Nice list. You missed my favorite, though. A good Coffee Pot or Espresso Machine! Can't start the day if I don't Smell the Coffee. ~Lois / www.recipeideashop.com

Carrie Rundhaug

Tuesday 12th of April 2016

I definitely agree on the cast iron! I absolutely love cooking with cast iron and desperately need to get some new ones. We left ours in the states when we moved.

Mandi Pimental

Monday 11th of April 2016

With how much baking I do, YES to rubber spatulas and pretty glass mixing bowls for photos. GREAT list

Morgan @ Morgan Manages Mommyhood

Monday 4th of April 2016

Definitely agree that cast iron pans are a MUST! My brother moved out on his own and I got him one as a house warming gift - they're perfect for everything!

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