Here’s a checklist of some items I think every kitchen should have if possible. These are all basic kitchen tools and have multiple applications because fuck unitools (I’m looking at you strawberry slicer).
- A Knife Set: You should really invest in good knives. They make cooking much easier. Get a few good knives (a chef’s knife, a paring knife, and a serrated blade) if you can’t get a whole block. If you can only get one, get a good chef’s knife.
- Saute Pan/Skillet/Wok: Any one of these three will do, but having all three can be helpful. I generally prefer a wok (less mess and cooks more evenly), but a skillet will give you the best taste.
Cast Iron Skillet
- Pots: No brainer, but you need at least two pots — one small, one large — with lids. Stainless steel is best, but aluminum will do.
- Baking sheet: I’d suggest at least a 13″ x 9″ pan.
- Mixing Bowl(s): More than one is useful, but you can get by with only one.
- Cutting Board: Wood, bamboo, polyethylene… any of these will do.
- Measuring Cups/Spoons: Unless you want to be a hero and eyeball all of your measurements.
Pyrex isn’t just for making crack.
- Spatula(s): You can get by with just one spatula, but there are multiple types of spatulas with different uses. I suggest getting at least a silicone spatula for eggs and such and a harder (wood/steel/plastic) slotted spatula for everything else.
- Mixing Spoon: This can be slotted or solid. Both is better.
- Tongs: You COULD use forks, but tongs simply make dealing with some food easier. After all, our goal is laziness.
- Salt and Pepper: These are truly the unsung heroes of the kitchen. They should be non-negotiable members of your cupboard. Regular salt and pepper will do, but you’ll thank yourself for using kosher salt and peppercorns.
Steve and Blue needed them and so do you.
- Oil: I prefer extra virgin olive oil, but feel free to use whatever shortening you like or need depending on what you’re making.
- Colander: You can get by without it, but this will save you from messes and burns. Plastic or metal will both work fine.
- A Grill: Most things taste better on the grill and some recipes may call for a grill. If you can’t access an outdoor grill, a George Foreman grill is a worthwhile addition to your kitchen.
- Aluminum foil: Cleanup is much easier with foil. Some recipes may also require you to cover a pan with foil or wrap your food in foil as it cooks.
- Spice rack: You can either buy one or build up your spice cabinet as you go along and need various spices.
- Baking Pan: You can get a metal one or you can buy the disposable aluminum ones for easy cleanup.
If there’s anything you think I left out, feel free to comment below.