Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Kitchen essentials, part 1--gadgets

A few of my friends have asked me to share the items I keep in my pantry at all times. Great idea, I say! I love reading lists like this because they inspire me to try new things and help broaden my spectrum of potential dishes that can be made on a whim. Since there's a lot of stuff in my kitchen, I'm going to break it up into several posts:

Part 1: gadgets
Part 2: pantry foods
Part 3: fridge and freezer foods


This is by no means exclusive; these are just my most-used items that I wouldn't want to be without. As you'll see, I like things in 2s. It's nice to have a back-up, sure, but I frequently use the items in 2s simultaneously, especially for big holiday meals.

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Essential Kitchen Gadgets:
  • 2 large skillets--one nonstick and one regular
  • 2 medium skillets--one nonstick and one regular
  • small nonstick skillet
  • stock pot with lid
  • 2 large pots with lids
  • 2 medium pots with lids
  • medium double boiler with lid
  • 3 baking sheets--small, medium, large
  • 2 cookie baking sheets with center air insulation (Baker's Secret brand is my preference)
  • 2 loaf pans
  • 2 muffin tins (12 + 6 or two 12s)
  • 2 pie pans (glass or metal)
  • a 10-piece set of French White (it's classic!) Corningware casseroles, ramekins, and lids
  • 2 9x13 pans
  • 2 sets of mixing bowls (we have one plastic and one metal)
  • salad bowl
  • large serving platter
  • salad spinner
  • large roasting pan with rack
  • 3 cooling racks
  • 5 or so serving spoons (slotted and regular)
  • enough dinner and dessert plates, bowls, glasses, forks, spoons, and knives to serve 8 people
  • 2 rubber spatulas
  • wide plastic spatula (my fave for pancakes)
  • 3 metal spatulas (1 slotted)
  • pie server
  • 3 whisks
  • hand mixer or stand mixer
  • spaghetti spoon
  • ladle
  • 3 big metal spoons (1 slotted)
  • Crock Pot (I love my 6-qt. auto-timer Crock!)
  • 3 glass measuring cups (1-, 2-, and 4-cup)
  • metal measuring spoons
  • metal dry-ingredient measuring cups
  • lots of food-storage containers
  • garlic press
  • apple slicer
  • boiled egg slicer
  • waffle maker
  • hand or stand mixer
  • toaster
  • coffee maker
  • 2 pitchers (we use one for iced tea and one for iced coffee)
  • ingredient prep bowls (Kitchen-Aid sells a nice set of 4 with lids)
  • sifter
  • strainer
  • basting brush
  • 2 pot holders
  • oven mitt
  • 2 trivets
  • electric can opener
  • 10-piece (minimum) knife set
  • 3 cutting boards (1 large for cutting lots of veggies at once, 1 for meat, 1 for miscellaneous other uses)
  • colander
  • ice-cube bin
  • Crock Pot liners
  • foil
  • various sizes of Ziplocs
  • Saran wrap
  • parchment paper
  • wax paper
If you're into alphabetizing, sorry--I probably just cranked up your anxiety with this random-order list. Anyway, there it is! What other essential gadgets do you have?