· Bright Ideas · My Top 20 Must-Have Kitchen Tools

My Top 20 Must-Have Kitchen Tools

Kitchen Essentials

I am not a professional chef by any stretch of the imagination, but I HAVE been cooking for my husband and kids for 25 years now (including a begrudging switch to gluten-free cooking 4 years ago), and I think that gives me at least some ‘hands-on’ kitchen cred. :-) Over the last quarter century I have bought (and gotten rid of) probably hundreds of kitchen tools. Through the process of elimination I have narrowed down my list to what I consider to be my absolute kitchen “must-haves.”

This list is definitely not all-inclusive, but it’s not bare bones either…it’s somewhere in between. Hopefully it will be useful and possibly even introduce you to something new.

With the help of Chippmunk.com, where you can compare deals from your favorite stores, and Wayfair.com, where you can purchase anything on my list, here are…..

My Top 20 Must-Have Kitchen Tools:

Kitchen Essentials

Pots & Pans.

You don’t need a cupboard full of pots and pans to get by very handily in the kitchen. I think most of us tend to have too many overall. All you REALLY need is:

  • a small sauté pan and a large sauté pan
  • a small sauce pan and a larger sauce pan
  • a pot for cooking pasta, stock, etc.

Kitchen Essentials


You don’t need a big block of knives. You need a chef knife, a paring knife, and a bread (serrated) knife — these will handle most everything you’ll need to cut. Invest in as good a quality of knives as you can afford, but I wouldn’t go crazy.

Kitchen Essentials

Cutting Board.

A large cutting board, a 15″ x 20″ is good. Nothing is worse than watching your chopped-up veggies fall to the floor because you don’t have enough work space. Don’t forget a smaller plastic cutting board for handling meat and poultry safely.

Kitchen Essentials


I actually have several whisks in different sizes. I prefer one with thin wires rather than thick heavy ones and I prefer a solid handle so food doesn’t get stick in it. Most important, make sure it fits well in YOUR hand.

Kitchen Essentials

Wooden spoons.

I also have lots of these in different sizes. They are inexpensive and come in very handy, especially when cooking with non-stick pans because they won’t scratch.

Kitchen Essentials


I know microplane graters are all the rage, but I’ll stick with my sturdy box grater. It’s versatile with four different grate options to shred, shave, dust, and zest.

Kitchen Essentials

Kitchen shears.

I didn’t start using kitchen shears until about 5 years ago and now I don’t now how I lived without them! I use them ALL the time.Kitchen Essentials

Lemon Squeezer.

Another fairly recent acquisition to my kitchen, but once I experienced the joy of fresh squeezed lemon juice in my salsa and other lemony dishes, I was sold! SO much easier than trying to squeeze with just your hands.

Kitchen Essentials

Potato masher.

I rarely “whip” my homemade mashed potatoes anymore. We prefer them a little more “rustic” with lumps and all, so a potato masher is a must-have for that. A masher with a curved head allows you to get into corners of bowls and pots.

Kitchen Essentials

Instant-read thermometer.

Another newcomer to my kitchen that I can’t live without now! I use a Thermapen from ThermoWorks because it’s super fast and accurate and because my nephew Cameron, who is a Grand Champion Pit Boss and owns BamBams BBQ, HIGHLY recommends it. :-) They are pricey but you will never ruin an expensive steak on the grill again!

Kitchen Essentials

Nesting Bowls.

There is nothing more frustrating than trying to cook without the right size bowls. Nesting bowls give you a range of sizes, and don’t take up too much valuable storage space.Kitchen Essentials

Measuring cups.

A MUST for baking. You should have at least one Pyrex liquid measuring cup (I prefer the 4 cup size, very handy!) You’ll also need a set of measuring cups for solids.

Kitchen Essentials

Measuring Spoons.

Oval measuring spoons fit into spice jars better than round ones (trust me on this one.)Kitchen Essentials


I switched to a peppermill (and to a salt bowl instead of a shaker) when I started watching the Food Network several years ago and saw all the chefs using one. At first I did it to be “cool” like the Food Network chefs, but soon I was sold on the taste of FRESHLY ground pepper. You can also easily adjust it from a coarse grind to a fine one. I like that.

Kitchen Essentials


I’ve always owned a blender, but it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I upgraded to a Blendtec blender and, once again, don’t know how I functioned in the kitchen without it. Of course, a good all-purpose blender of ANY kind is a definite must-have in any kitchen. It can puree, whip, and chop at a fraction of the cost of a food processor.

Kitchen Essentials

Slow Cooker.

I don’t think I need to explain this one. Well, maybe just a little. Slow cookers are cheap to buy, economical to use and they’re great for making the most of budget ingredients. Not to mention the convenience of throwing in all the ingredients and then walking away. What’s not to love?

Kitchen Essentials

Silicon Baking Mats.

They make baking a non-stick DREAM and are reusable, rather than having to toss them out. They are also very useful for rolling jelly rolls, etc.

Kitchen Essentials

Stand Mixer.

I love my stand mixer and use it OFTEN. I love the hands-free aspect of a stand mixer and that you can mix BIG batches with ease. Basically it just makes mixing anything a lot easier…and that makes me happy. :-)

Kitchen Essentials

And last but not least….

I highly recommend a cast iron enamel Dutch oven. Enameled cast iron is heavy, heats evenly and stays hot. Its surface allows browning but is virtually non-stick. It can be used on top of or in the oven. And they are so pretty to look at! :-) The best brand out there, in my opinion, is Le Creuset.

It’s ideal for simmering, marinating, poaching, braising, and browning. It even goes from the stove or oven to the table and can store leftovers in the refrigerator or freezer!

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Bright Ideas

  • Don’t forget cast iron. I have good stainless pans and use the sauce pans and stock pot a lot, but the single most-used pan in my kitchen is a 10″ cast-iron skillet I’ve had for more than 40 years, with a square iron griddle the second most-used Once you get these pans seasoned, they become versatile, easy to maintain and forgiving when needed. The other kitchen tool I use a lot is actually two: a pair of slightly bent fish spatulas. They’re thin and easy to slide under even delicate foods and having two is wonderful for stabilizing the food, like for flipping a grilled sandwich or folding an omelette.

  • Hi, I just stumbled upon your blog. I’d say I definitely can’t live without my garlic press! My whole family loves garlic and it just makes cooking a breeze!


    • Same here! Leave me stranded on a deserted island with the choice of only a garlic press or a lemon press… and I’ll take the garlic press… ANY day!! :)

  • A good knife. It took years before my husband was willing to buy me a “good” one. Once he used it, there were no regrets. He knew just like I knew!

  • Love and use it almost daily : Blendtec.
    And your list is on the dot! No matter how big or small your kitchen is, all you need and will ever use is listed in it.
    Thank you for the giveaway!

  • I’ve learned about several new tools that I was unaware of–the silicone mats, the lemon squeezer, and the instant-read thermometer.
    Truthfully, it’s hard to say which is my favorite tool. The crock pot is great because it makes cooking a meal sooo simple, but the food processor preps the food easier than I can.
    I have a thermometer, but the instant-read one looks easier to handle.
    Since I have lost some upper arm strength, including my hands, I’m always looking for ways to make my job easier. I know my husband will roll his eyes when I tell him what I want to add to the rest of my collection! Thank you for the great ideas.
    I do have a question which might sound silly: do the silicone mats replace lining the cookie sheets with foil or parchment?

  • My favorite kitchen item is my rectangular baking stone by Pampered Chef. I never ever burn my cookies and they always turn out amazing. I have had this stone for probably 10 years or more and absolutely love it!!

  • LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your favs…. GREAT idea on the oval measuring spoons!!!
    My most favorite, is actually two items. My crockpot and food processor… They make my life so simple..

  • after years of sticking a fork in food that I am frying in a pan (and having if slip off the fork and splash oil all over) I bought some tongs…YAY for TONGS!!!! WHAT WAS I THINKING ALL THESE YEARS?

  • A rubber spatula! Or a rubber scraper according to family and consumer sciences circa ’04. I use mine to get every last drop of just about every kind of thing, use it when making scrambled eggs and omelets, gently moving fragile veggies in a sauté pan, scraping down the sides of my blender, mixer, and processor! And you can use it to spread any soft spread on any surface! I am so confused when I find kitchens without one, and wonder what they have been doing all this time. And I almost always have an urge to get one as a present for that person.

  • I have to say that use all of the above, but I also keep a rolling pin and electric hand mixer very close by. I find there is more control for smaller amounts when using a hand mixer, and I use my rolling pin for many things. i.e. crushing crackers & nuts, dough, and yes, even homemade play dough fun with the kids. They save time with less to wash instead of using large appliances. However, I do love all of them. :)

  • Great list! I would add baking spatulas – I have a skinny one and a large one with a scoop built in. Very handy! (I also am a recent convert to kitchen shears, love them!)

    • Really?? Maybe I’m just a tiny wimp, but I’m selling mine off as I find it too heavy for tiny me, and too cumbersome for my tiny counter space… now that I’ve gotten a silicone rolling pin it’s bye-bye marble!! (though I hope I don’t regret it!)

  • My favorite kitchen items, although I use most of what you mentioned, are my pots and pans. I couldn’t do without them. But I really want a cast iron Le Creuset pan and the lemon squeezer. Thank you!

  • Love all of these! Personally, I can’t live without my rice cooker (we’ve had it for over two decades!) and my pressure cooker!

    I had to smile when I saw the glass nesting bowls – my beloved grandparents ALWAYS gave these as a wedding gift.

  • This might be a slight stretch, but one of the few things I’d add to your list is a butcher’s block counter top. I. LOVE. Mine. Love it. I’ve always wanted one, but I had NO idea how much I would love it.

  • My favorite items are my flexible cutting boards, they are easy to wash, not too heavy and inexpensive when its time to replace them. I have three, with one being for meat only. My daughter has been converted from the wood type because she was uncomfortable about getting it clean enough and the flexible are so much easier to handle.

    • Ohhh you gotta love auto-correct sometimes!!

      …(and I’d also be willing to bet that your ‘microphone’ and mandoline are best buddies in your kitchen! They must even be making your Microplane a little envious… all snuggled up & (tea) cosy-like with each other in the kitchen drawer & whatnot…!! ;) lol)

  • My kitchen essential is my small 2-cip push button food chopper. I have super sensitive eyes, and cutting onions make be bawl every time, so this little guys comes in handy!!

  • This is by the far the best list I have seen as far as kitchen essentials go. One thing I love is my Ikea cheese grater that attaches to a bowl. When the kids help, it keeps the mess “contained”.

  • I love my microplane box grater–sturdier than the regular one-size ones with a handle (I’ve snapped the plastic edges on one), and it has a fine grating side and a larger grating side.

  • I say knives, I don’t have many, but they are very essential. To my luck one broke this weekend. There is also my blender, ever morning everybody in my family has their herbalife shake.

  • MY CAST IRON…..I have the tradition cast iron skillets and the enamel coated stock pots, we use them for everything….my kitchen would not be complete with them !!!!!

  • I cannot live in kitchen the way I do without my Cuisinart food processor, FoodSaver, or Kitchenaid industrial stand mixer. I use them both almost every day and they make food prep so much easier for me. We do a lot of bulk shopping, so prepping for the freezer is a snap, and when preparing everything from a meal to a DIY something they are usually the first gadgets I turn to!

    • My Foodsaver is by far my favourite as well! I vacuum seal practically everything! (but it also helps that I’ve stocked up on a good variety of canisters, containers, mason jars to use with the jar sealers… and even tracked down old discontinued ‘universal lids’ that can go on top of any suitably sized cup or bowl with a smooth even rim! It also feels great to cut down on the plastic waste! Foodsaver FTW!! :)

  • My must haves in the kitchen are shears and an immersion blender! I can do so much with an immersion blender and clean up is much easier than a standard blender.

    • I’d have to say that I can’t live without either!! They both have their strengths & weaknesses IMO, and they BOTH have an equal place in my kitchen! :)

      For eg. I don’t like that the immersion blender can’t be inserted into EVERYthing!… (such as narrow-mouthed mason jars)… however, I CAN attach my blender’s blade system onto my regular-mouth mason jars to blend directly in the jar… (it’s something that ALL blenders can do, yet few people know of this trick! — though I do only recommend using good, quality, tempered-glass mason jars of reputable brand & quality… as I wouldn’t want to risk blending in a cheap, thin, no-name mason jar!)

      By blending directly in the mason jar I can therefore forego having to clean the big blender jar whenever I’m only just blending smaller quantities… or, say, when making a single serving of a smoothie, for eg… (plus immersion blenders are useless at blending VERY small quantities when the contents can’t fill up the beaker/container high enough to reach the blades!)

      And I also like being able to serve & store directly from/in that same mason jar… rather than having to pull out the spatula to scrape down the blender beaker whenever I use my immersion blender…. or having to transfer to another container for fridge storage. PLUS I vacuum seal in the mason jars too… so I really CANNOT live without my regular countertop blender! It sure beats having to own a Magic Bullet too!! :)

      Immersion blenders CAN’T do or top that IMO! …(though they ARE awesome for blending directly in the pot while still cooking on the stovetop!… as, admittedly, the countertop blender ain’t got nuttin’ on the immersion blender as far as that goes!!) lol :)

  • Most used are knives and cutting boards.
    Favorite that is not on your list is a large cast iron skillet. Very versatile. Can be used on the range, in the oven, camping, or on the wood stove when the power is out.

  • I love my Bamix Stick (Immersion) blender with it’s small food processor attachment. I’ve had it for years now and can’t imagine doing without it. I can chop, blend, beat, whip just about anything with it.

    My favorite thing to do with it is a lowfat shake. In the tall mixing container or glass, add lowfat milk, add some sweetener and some frozen berries then stick the Bamix in there and let it do it’s job. DELICIOUS, shake that will give you brain freeze every time. LOL

  • I try to use as few items in the kitchen as possible, but I have a dutch oven and it’s one of my absolute favorite things! It can be used on the stovetop and put into the oven, and you can use it for anything from roasts to soups to bread.

  • My must have is a garlic press! I love cooking with fresh garlic and who has time to finely mince garlic?? Not me!

    I have been wanting a dutch oven for years!!! Pick me!

  • I have to agree with Elizabeth & Jillee!! A lemon squeezer is a MUST because I squeeze a LOT of lemons for my water everyday. I really really want a small food processor though. I may have to ask for it for my Birthday coming up in June. :)

  • I use most of the tools you mentioned. Will have to try some silicon mats, though. I’ve been eyeing up an enameled pot for some time so would love to have one!

  • I agree with your list! I would add a garlic mincer as an essential tool. I realize I could just use a knife, but the mincer is faster, cleaner, more thorough!

  • My must have tool if I had to pick one, would be my Crock Pot. Love it for easy no brainer meals, Sunday lunch after church or just when I dont feel like slaving over a hot stove.

  • These are all my favorites too.! But one other thing I use ALL the time is a salad spinner. I have a basic one that was less than ten bucks.

  • We got a food processor as a wedding gift, and it was one of those things that I looked at it and immediately thought, “When are we ever going to use this?” But I was way wrong! We use it all the time!

  • I couldn’t live without my cast iron skillet. A friend bought it at an estate sale in Iowa (where I grew up), refurbished it, and sent it to me in Ohio. I love it.

  • Definitely my favorite kitchen tool is a good knife. I like using as many fresh veggies, fruits, etc in my cooking and a good knife goes a long way!! I have always wanted a Dutch oven tho. If I ever am lucky enough to have one I know this will end up being right up there as one of my favorite kitchen items/tools!!

  • We switched to the Keurig coffee system over 5 years ago and love it. My husband was getting very p8icky about coffee and couldn’t find any ground coffeed and pot that brewed it to his liking. We have a Keurig at home, one in the RV, and a small one to take when traveling. It fits in our carryon.

  • I love gadgets, and my favorite is my meat tenderizer. It’s several rows of long/narrow razors encased in the plastic frame. It’s spring loaded and you just press down on the meat and the blades come down and cut the tough sections. It’s similar to using a stapler, and does an awesome job of tenderizing even the toughest cut of meat. No pounding!!

    • (copy & pasted from my previous reply to a similar comment, further above!):

      I’d have to say that I can’t live without either!! They both have their strengths & weaknesses IMO, and they BOTH have an equal place in my kitchen! :)

      For eg. I don’t like that the immersion blender can’t be inserted into EVERYthing!… (such as narrow-mouthed mason jars)… however, I CAN attach my blender’s blade system onto my regular-mouth mason jars to blend directly in the jar… (it’s something that ALL blenders can do, yet few people know of this trick! — though I do only recommend using good, quality, tempered-glass mason jars of reputable brand & quality… as I wouldn’t want to risk blending in a cheap, thin, no-name mason jar!)

      By blending directly in the mason jar I can therefore forego having to clean the big blender jar whenever I’m only just blending smaller quantities… or, say, when making a single serving of a smoothie, for eg… (plus immersion blenders are useless at blending VERY small quantities when the contents can’t fill up the beaker/container high enough to reach the blades!)

      And I also like being able to serve & store directly from/in that same mason jar… rather than having to pull out the spatula to scrape down the blender beaker whenever I use my immersion blender…. or having to transfer to another container for fridge storage. PLUS I vacuum seal in the mason jars too… so I really CANNOT live without my regular countertop blender! It sure beats having to own a Magic Bullet too!! :)

      Immersion blenders CAN’T do or top that IMO! …(though they ARE awesome for blending directly in the pot while still cooking on the stovetop!… as, admittedly, the countertop blender ain’t got nuttin’ on the immersion blender as far as that goes!!) lol :)

  • Love – love! kitchen stuff. We use our VitaMix daily — it’s wonderful. Also couldn’t do with out my cast iron skillet. Use at least two small saucepans — because we don’t have big meals. Really do like the microplanes – have a small one (zesting, ginger, garlic) and a larger one for carrots and such. If I have lot of grating – use the food processor – my arm wears out otherwise. Yay kitchens.

  • I would not be able to function without a knife and cutting board. I’m always prepping veggies and fruits for snacks and to cook worth.

  • My favorite kitchen item is a whisk! I will use my whisk whenever I mix ingredients for complete integration of ingredients and resulting in the smoothest texture. I recently began using my whisk for blending my protein shakes;spinning the handle between the palms of my hands. I even take a small one to work with me so I can blend all the protein in without leaving any sticking to the sides of the container.

  • The kitchen tool I would consider most essential is probably my 12″ x 16″ baking sheets. I use them for baking cookies, pizza, bars, etc. And since we make homemade pizza about once a week, they get used quite a lot! Would love to win. I have never used an enamel-coated cast iron pan, but have heard great things about them!

  • I own all of the tools that you have listed, and couldn’t without any of them, however, I love my stick blender! It is a fantastic timesaver!

  • My most essential kitchen tool is probably our Blendtec. I know you already mentioned it, but really it’s an invaluable appliance. It gets used at least once a day at our house, often more!

  • I couldnt live without my special knife! it is the most important thing in my kitchen next to my coffee maker.. LOL
    but then again, all that you mentioned in the above i do have and do use all.. i love cooking! and trying new recipes.. and preparing meals a head of time as i am a single grandmother! So when grandchildren come over.. they have a choice of different foods, and cooking utensils!!

  • Honestly, it seems like such a luxury when I received it as a wedding gift, but my KitchenAid standing mixer is absolutely my favorite kitchen item. It comes in handy in nearly every recipe, and I’m grateful for it every time I use it — especially when it comes to baking!

  • My favorite kitchen tool is my t-towel. I use it under my cutting board and mixing bowl. It keeps the cutting board from moving around while I am cutting. When I am mixing by hand, I can easily move my mixing bowl in circular motion to evenly mix the ingredients together.

  • My kitchen shears! Cut meat or chicken, toast or sandwiches, bread dough into rolls, just wish I had several, because of course, they get washed a LOT.

  • I think my must-have kitchen tool would be my blender or food processor. They make healthy eating MUCH easier and I still can’t believe some people don’t own one or both of these things! Smoothies, homemade larabars, banana ice-cream… YUM! <3

  • My favorite kitchen tool is a sheet pan. I have several in several sizes. They don’t take up much space to store and you can roast just about anything on them.

  • The thing I use the most would definitely be my box grater. I use it multiple times a week. Or my little salt pot that I store my kosher salt in on the counter. No need to pull it out every day, it is conveniently right at my fingertips!

  • My favorite kitchen tools are my soft slicone spatulas… i use them all the time.. for getting that last bit of something out of the jar or bowl!

  • I love my slow cooker… I have two big 7-qt ones that I use at least once a week, an oval and a round. I don’t know how I’d do all the from-scratch cooking I do without them!

  • My essential kitchen tool is a 2 quart Pampered Chef Batter Bowl. I use it for mixing, measuring (when my husband has stolen my measuring cups for something essential in the garage). I’ve baked cakes in it, and cook/reheated things in the microwave, as well as storing in the fridge.
    Absolutely the most versatile, essential tool in my kitchen!!

  • My most essential piece of kitchen equipment? Gosh it’s difficult to narrow it down, and I want to name something you haven’t covered. I’m going to say the George Foreman grill. Because I hate to have a bunch of kitchen gadgets and this one surprised me with its’ greatness.

  • My essential kitchen item is DEFINITELY my Kitchenaid mixer! I bake. A LOT. And I can’t imagine having to whip up frostings and batters by hand; it would take soo long!

  • My favorite knife by far……….I can’t live without it. But most of the items you have listed are also essential for making cooking easier and timely. Thanks for all your help and expertise.

  • One if the MOST USED items in my kitchen is my toaster oven, and small rectangle stoneware bar pan (pampered chef brand) that I keep inside the toaster oven ready to go.

  • My best investment ever was in a good set of knives. My husband bought me a high quality set a few years ago and I could not believe the difference it made in prep. I don’t know why I didn’t buy them 25 years ago. Oh yeah. I didn’t have the money.

  • It is tough to choose just one! I love to cook! My top choices are: sharp vegetable knife, large Crockpot, and a Christmas lights timer to set the Crockpot to go on/off when I need it to since I’m at work most of the day.

  • I have all the items that you mentioned and far and away the item that we can’t live without would be a good set of knives and several cutting boards. I agree with a few of the other posters, I also really love my silicone scrapers and tongs. I also couldn’t live without a kitchen timer because I’m so forgetful, I never remember to watch the clock probably since I’m usually doing more than one thing at a time. Such is the life of a busy household!

  • My toaster oven!….it’s just hubby and I so I love using my toaster oven and not heat up the kitchen with the big one…I love a good sharp chef knife also….

  • I agree with the knives and cutting boards ( I use the flex ones a LOT), but my utility pan is my 12-inch sauté pan, maybe 3-4 inches deep that came with a glass lid. I use it for EVERYTHING (more or less) except pasta and mashed potatoes. And it is one that can go from stove to oven, so it is versatile.

  • My good-to utensil is a rubber scraper/spatula. My newest one is “two-ended”—one end is wider and the other is skinny. It is amazing for any mixing, scraping and getting every yummy drop out of my pan or bowl.

  • My absolute favorite kitchen item is my set of melamine nesting bowls from Williams Sonoma. Their non slip ring on the bottom is perfect for keeping your bowl on the work surface and not on the floor! I have had my set for over 8 years and they are still in perfect shape. It is my go to gift for all newly weds.

  • My most essential kitchen tool is a bowl scraper. It’s a flat, plastic, flexible handheld scoop that conforms to the shape of bowls. Helps with scraping the last bit of cake mix or brownie mix out of the bowl. Got it for free when ordering something off the TV, I don’t even remember what I bought.

  • My favorite go-to kitchen gadget is my food chopper! It has saved me so much time prepping veggies for pasta sauces, etc. And it does a much better job than I would probably do ;)

  • You have listed my favorites also – which are just basic kitchen essentials – good bowls, measuring spoons, wooden spoons, good knives etc. You don’t need a special “tool” for everything – most things will multi-task!

  • I love your list, but when I’m making bread, my danish dough mixer is The. Tool. to have. I agree, many of us have too many pans–and in my avoidance of non-stick and even stainless due to possible leaching, I have a lovely set of cast iron saute and fry pans, and a nice set of Corning glass saucepans. I am lacking an enameled dutch/french oven, though!

  • Another must have kitchen tool of mine is my kitchen aid stand mixer! I’m a baker and couldn’t live without it! It’s definitely a workhorse if u want to make bread of any kind! :) thanks for the chance to win!

  • I ust have sharp knives! I recently did a 2-wk juice fast and having to cut so many fruits and vegetables only reinforced how important good sharp knives are in the kitchen.

  • My most used kitchen tool is an emersion blender my husband got me for Christmas a few years back from William Sonoma. It cuts down on the mess of having to clean out a blender and quick and easy to store as well.

  • My cast iron skillet because I can brown my meat and the skillet will go straight from the Stove top to the oven at any temperature and finish cooking.

  • This is a great list of “must haves” in the kitchen! I love my crockpot. I work full time so it’s great to put supper on and it’s ready when I get home. It’s especially nice when we have to get going for evening commitments.

  • I absolutely love kitchen gadgets! Can’t pass up a kitchen store! One of my most used items is my slow cooker, but I absolutely love my stand mixer. I love to cook so it is a wonderful helper. I have never owned any Le Creuset but have wanted some for a while now!

  • It’s hard to pick just one favorite kitchen item! Honestly, I think one of my favorites is my cookie scoop. I don’t make cookies often anymore, but a cookie scoop makes it SOOOOOOOO much easier (and my hands don’t get all messy!)

    One thing I know I am lacking is good knives. I have some ok knives but they are getting dull. I should probably learn more about how to take care of them :)

  • While I should say that the coffeepot is my most-used kitchen tool – for the good of everyone, really!! – my favorite kitchen item may be my VitaMix blender. Yes, they are expensive, but they are great at blending everything (no chunks left in a smoothie!) and buying a refurbished one allowed me to save on the cost and still have a 5-year warranty!!

  • I love my cast iron pans. I have had them for years in storage and just this part Christmas started using them regularly after receiving a how to (not burn) cooking with cast iron book. I have since purchased a Dutch oven. But I couldn’t live without the silicone cast iron handle covers I purchased from Crackle Barrel. Such a life saver.

  • A few years ago I bought an electric roaster. I LOVE it! It allows me to roast my turkey or ham, and frees up the conventional oven for baking fresh dinner rolls at the same time! I’d be lost without it!

  • It would have to be my KitchenAid 6-Quart Bowl-Lift Professional 600 stand mixer. I may not use it often, but I can’t imagine living without it!!

  • Love my Pampered Chef chopper – chopped veggies, fruit, nuts, in seconds; very sturdy and easy to wash. A must-have for recipes requiring chopped vegetables, just pull it out of the cupboard and use, no plug-in required.

  • I know you said in my kitchen but I LOVE our grill…. if I had to go outside of the grill I’d probably choose my knife set. Sounds strange but I couldn’t meal prep without my knives :)

  • I ask for kitchen gadgets for Christmas because I love them so much. This year was a cast iron skillet. I realize it is not a gadget, but it is a must for Southern cornbread. I think my mini food processor gets the most workout. It is easy to get out, use, and clean. I could name so many.

  • Oh be still my beating heart.
    I LOVE Le Creuset. drool.
    My problem: I live in South Africa, so I don’t think the competition applies to me.

  • My absolute favorite is my bamboo spoons and spatulas. They’re perfect in my non-stick pans, I use them every day, no matter what I’m cooking.

  • My must have (that you didn’t mention) is my Pampered Chef (or other brand) food chopper. It makes chopping small batches of onions, peppers, chocolate, or nuts SUPER easy. And it’s dish washer friendly.

  • My stoneware is my most essential kitchen tool. They cook evenly, nothing burns in them, I use them all the time, don’t know what I’d do without them.

  • I have a set of five Cutco knives, and now that I have them, I don’t know how I ever got along without them! Good knives really do make a difference!

  • My all time favorite tool is my razor blade scrapper. It cleans up the goofy and dried on messes my daughter may leave on the counter tops after her bake feasts. It is also great for cleaning dirty spots on my floors. Love it!

  • My most favorite tool in the kitchen is my slow cooker. I have had it for many years and use it often. Easy peasy. Just put in ingredients and let it cook. Absolutely love it.

  • My kitchen shears would be my most favorite I use them for everything, one for food and one for everything else. my husband likes the seafood salad at Publix but it is really chunky so I use the scissors.

  • I love wooden sppons , so that would be my favorite. I am also taking note of the list and will get a lemon squeezer. The LeCruest dutch oven is something I would love tohave.

  • Without a doubt the kitchen item I can’t live without would be my cast iron skillet. I was between houses last year and the one item I didn’t pack up was my cast iron skillet. Of course there are a ton of other kitchen items that I love and would have a hard time living without but I use that skillet every day – often several times a day.

  • In this waste not want not world, Calphalon Scrapers are my favorite kitchen tool. I call them my money save. They get to the bottom of every jar or can I open. No more throwing out the last little remnants of a product when I can scrape the jar clean.

  • I have a hand operated Swingaway can opener, that was not expensive to buy, but works way better than any of the cheapie can openers I have picked up.

  • I love nesting bowls, and have switched from stainless steel to glass-so versatile. I’m next with the instant read thermomete. I don’t have a dutch oven so would be perfect to win this one. Thanks for the op importunity.

  • We have many knives but could manage quite well with two quality sharp ones. With two primary cooks in our kitchen, there is always chopping, slicing, dicing and just plane cutting going on!

  • The most essential item in my kitchen without a doubt is my crockpot! Between work, raising a family and preferring a home cooked meal to going out its a must! I work from home now and still much prefer to put dinner in the crock and go about my business.

  • I love my counter scraper. A big square metal scraper with a rounded end – use it for cutting, picking up something off a cookie sheet, or cleaning up the counter. LOVE IT!

  • My life is so much easier with a Crockpot. We love to eat soup and it is so easy to throw everything in the pot without worrying about ingredients burning while the flavors meld together.