Today I’m sharing with you my list of MUST HAVE kitchen essentials! These are some of my tried and true essentials that I think every home cook should invest in. From whipping up easy weeknight meals to creating lavish deserts and appetizers, these tools will elevate your cooking skills. This is not meant to be a comprehensive list of kitchen tools, more of an All-Star greatest hits collection! Everything is linked below and available on Amazon, which has been a life-saver for me lately. Let me know if you try any of these products, I know you’ll love them!
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Kitchen Shears – If you only buy one thing from this list, get these! Kitchen shears are a must have for cutting meat, tough vegetables, and sooo much more. I never used kitchen shears for years but once I started, I was hooked! These are ten times better than your best knife. I’ve had these KitchenAid shears for a few years now and they never get dull or rust from washing them, and they’re super affordable!
Cast Iron Skillet – A cast iron skillet is a staple in any home cooks arsenal! Having a pan that you can start on the stove and transfer to the oven is essential for making great seared meat dishes. They’re also great for baking cornbread and frittatas. This cast iron skillet from Lodge is already pre-seasoned, so you can use it right out of the box! It’s a great price and super easy to clean.
Microplane Zester Grater – This zester grater is worth it just for the number of uses it has! I love using this tiny grater for zesting citrus for recipes, grating Parmesan cheese on top of a plated dish, and finely grating ginger and garlic for meals. Even if you have a large box grater, this handheld tiny version will come in handy frequently. I love that this one is made from stainless steel and has rubber feet on the bottom. It’s also dishwasher safe!
Dutch Oven – An enameled dutch oven is like the Cadillac of kitchen essentials. It’s a little pricey, but it looks great and works even better. I love using enameled dutch ovens because it creates an almost non-stick surface, while still giving a great sear to meats or vegetables. I’ve linked my favorite color of this Lodge six quart dutch oven, Desert Sage, but there are a ton of colors and sizes to choose from!
Silicone Cooking Utensils – Do you want to know how to care for your cookware? Use silicone utensils. I know people say metal utensils are “technically” safe for cast iron cooking, but I find they can damage the seasoning, which is not great. These are so much better than metal or wooden utensils, which can harbor odors from previously cooked meals. This set includes all your basic essentials, is a great price, and comes in a few fun colors!
Pasta Pot w/ Steamer Insert – You can’t go wrong with a large pasta pot that has a steamer insert! You can use this to boil pasta, steam veggies, make a big batch of soup, or to make broth or stock. Draining pasta is much easier and safer when using a pot with an insert. This is a little more expensive, but consider it an investment in home cooking! You can also replace your colander and steamer with just this one set, so the price evens out. I’ve linked a great mid-size option here, but you can go larger if you have more mouths to feed!
Half Sheet Baking Pan – A half sheet baking pan is an absolute NEED for any home cook! From sheet pan dinners, to cookies, and even pizza, you’ll be reaching for this baking sheet more than you think! It’s essential to get a thick bottomed baking sheet, as I find the thinner ones can burn your food and/or warp in the oven. This one from USA Pan has a ridged texture that enhances the non-stick properties and allows air flow. I have been baking and roasting with it for years, and it still looks brand new!
What kitchen essentials are a must-have for you? Comment below and let us know your faves!