I thought it would be a good idea at this point to add in a list of essential tools. As far as I’m concerned, you can never have too much stuff to play with, but with space, money, and usefulness as concerns, there are ways to cut some corners and maximize efficiency.
I’m not saying all of these things are essential either, but to me, it’s the bare minimum for a successful cook.
- One chefs knife
- One bread knife
- A smaller paring knife
- A filet knife
I picked these four as they are the ones I use the most. The filet knife in particular has a multitude of uses, being thin, flexible, and extremely sharp. I also recommend a butcher knife, but it’s not entirely essential. One note: spend the extra few dollars for real steel, not stainless. Stainless won’t take or hold an edge.
Pots and Pans
- 10 inch cast iron skillet
- 10 inch nonstick frying pan
- 4 quart soup pot
- 8+ quart stockpot
These four are the most useful, minimum set I can think of. They are the pans I personally use the most, and allow for wide ranges of cooking. From searing, roasting, frying, saute, these should get even a small family covered for dinner no problem.
- Spatula Set
- Wooden Spoon
I think it goes without saying, these are just necessity. Mixing, turning, frying, stirring, these will take up the least room with the least space. And really, you can never have too many of any of these, but you should always have at least one.
- Cutting Board (My personal favorite
- Food Processor OR blender
- Hand Mixer
- Measuring Cups/spoons
- Cookie sheet
- Instant read thermometer
These also may not seem to warrant explanation, but they are vitally important in any kitchen. I personally prefer a stand mixer, but a hand mixer has a smaller footprint. I say food processor or blender, because for the most part, you can accomplish the same result with either one.
- This tool actually deserves its own post. Pressure cookers can seriously be life changing for home cooking, from those who burn water to professional chefs.