Home. It’s where the heart is. It’s also where you’ve been anchored for the greater part of March and April. If you’re like me, you’ve spent about 80% of the time in your kitchen. Some moments you’re there to passively graze the fridge and cabinets hoping that something has sprung up since your last examination 10 minutes ago (spoiler alert: it hasn’t). Then, the other moments you’re there to experiment. This is the time to break out the equipment you registered for 6 years ago that you’ve never used. Or, a time to try those kitchen gadgets you’ve been eyeing over the years. Either way, here are my absolute kitchen must-haves.
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1. Kitchen Aid mixer
pies sky’s the limit with this device. My all time favorite kitchen appliance is my Kitchen Aid Mixer. A little pricey but so worth the investment. I never knew how much I’d love this thing until I had it. It’s quite honestly the Hercules of my kitchen in the sense it can mix anything! From making cookies, to cakes, to dough for baking bread, to pasta. If you’ve been thinking about getting one, it’s highly worth the investment since you will have it forever. Plus, they come in over ten colors so it’s a great way to add a little pop of color to your kitchen!
2. Lodge cast iron skillet
My cast iron skillet is my ride or die. It’s by far the most durable pan I have in my kitchen. These babies are built to last; like a Ford 150. They are durable. They are resilient. They are made from iron and steel. And, they will outlast generations. I pretty much use it with every meal but I especially love making shakshuka, whole wheat gingerbread pancakes, and don’t get me started on how perfectly it krisps chicken. The part I love most about the skillet is that it’s oven proof, so when you’re making something like say a delicious honey glazed salmon, you can easily transfer it from the stove to the oven to finish cooking.
3. Nordic Ware classic sheet pan
You know those nights when you just can’t and the thought of doing dishes gives you chills? Well, let me introduce you to the classic sheet pan where one sheet meals are their specialty and eliminate scrubbing pots all night. Every kitchen needs a few sheet pans on hand to make your favorite cookies or for roasting vegetables. They’re affordable and easy to store. And, since the makeup of these sheet pans are aluminum, food cooks evenly and you’ll have perfect results each time.
4. Marquette Castings Dutch Oven
Every kitchen should have a dutch oven. Not only are their beautiful enameled exteriors the perfect accessory to add to your kitchen, but they are absolute beasts in kitchen. Get ready to cook anything from soups, to slow braised short ribs, to roasting whole chickens(!),to impressing your friends with homemade breads. If a recipe calls for a high heat, you’re in good hands since they’re oven safe and can tolerate high temperatures up to 500 degrees. And don’t think you have to spend hundreds of dollars for one. They come at every price point!
5. PROfreshionals Vegetable Brush
If you’re not scrubbing your potatoes, start now. I can’t stress how important it is to wash and scrub your potatoes before cooking them. Even if you plan to chop them up and soak them. If you don’t scrub and wash before cutting, you risk spreading any dirt from the knife through the potato when cutting. This little brush is a machine and fits so perfectly in the palm of your hand.
6. Microplane Premium Zester Grater
I never knew how excited I would be over a grater. Sometimes I’ll choose what I make just so I can use this kitchen gadget (not kidding!). The way your food glides over its razor sharp teeth is so satisfying. It’s perfect for grating fresh ginger for your favorite meatballs, or zesting an orange over chicken wings. I even use it when I’m feeling too lazy to take out my food processor, I use it to grate carrots for my bolognese. You can basically run any ingredient through this thing and get perfect results every time.
7. Cuisinart 3-Quart Saucepan
I use this classic kitchen staple pretty much everyday. It’s equal parts stunning, professional, and works like a charm. I love it for cooking rice, reducing liquids, and making homemade tomato sauces. This beauty is also dishwasher safe for those days you just cant deal with hand-washing dishes.
8. Hamilton Beach 8-Cup Compact Food Processor
The ULTIMATE time saver. Not everyone has time to sit over the kitchen country and chop vegetables. This kitchen gem has saved me endless hours of chopping and shredding. It can basically do it all. For instance, I don’t really like chunky carrots in my bolognese sauce, so I throw the carrots in and shred them up so they’re really fine and blend in perfectly with the meat. My food processor is also amazing for making homemade hummus, homemade breadcrumbs to toss on salads, and just about everything in between. Save yourself some time and get one of these babies!