It can be easy to feel overwhelmed when you’re just starting to cook for yourself. There are so many recipes to try and kitchen tools to buy! But there’s one thing you should never forget: You need the right essential tools for cooking if you want to take your cooking skills from amateur to professional.
A good knife.
A good knife will last for years and make your cooking experience much more accessible. It will help you cut, slice and dice more efficiently, allowing you to get through your prep work in half the time it takes with a bad knife.
A strong pot.
A substantial pot is an essential tool in the kitchen. This is where you boil, sauté, simmer and braise your food. It must be able to withstand high heat without warping or melting.
The best pots are made from thick stainless steel that won’t react with acidic foods like tomatoes or citrus peelings. Since your pot must be big enough to hold plenty of ingredients at once—especially if you’re going to make a big batch of stock—you should aim for something around 8 quarts in size.
On top of all this functionality, you’ll also want a lid that fits tightly, so no steam escapes while cooking or simmering (this will result in bubbling away sweet flavour!).
A glass casserole dish.
A glass casserole dish will become your most important kitchen tool. It’s durable, easy to clean and can be used for baking or roasting. The best part is that you can also use it to freeze meals ahead of time!
Once you invest in this essential piece of cookware, you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it.
A sturdy wooden cutting board.
First, you need a cutting board. A wooden one is best for meat and poultry. It’s OK to use a separate board for fish and vegetables, mainly if you’re using your knives to chop up other food at the same time.
Wood is porous, so if you don’t wash it with hot soapy water after each use and rinse it immediately, the juices from raw chicken or beef can seep into the grain of your cutting board over time (and then make their way onto your veggies). It would help if you also dried immediately after washing; otherwise, bacteria could grow on wet surfaces.
A reliable non-stick pan.
Non-stick pans are easy to clean and safe for the environment, but you want to make sure that the non-stick coating is durable. If you use metal utensils in your non-stick pan or if you overheat it, the pan’s surface could be damaged, which means food could start sticking and burning again.
The best way to avoid these issues is by being gentle with your cooking tools and keeping them clean (a quick wash with soap and water will do).
Another vital thing to keep in mind when using non-stick pans: don’t use metal utensils! Metal scratches can damage the pan’s surface and cause oil or butter residue from cooking dishes like pancakes, and eggs, and even heating up water for tea!
Make sure you have these tools before you start cooking at home.
These five tools are the essentials for cooking at home. There’s no way to cook without them, and you’ll use them daily in your kitchen. Make sure you have these before you start cooking at home:
- A heavy-duty chef’s knife (or two)
- A good, sharp paring knife for smaller jobs
- A wooden spoon or spatula for stirring and scraping bowls
- A whisk for whipping cream or egg whites
- An all-purpose set of measuring cups and spoons
Cooking at home doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. With these five essential tools for cooking, you can create delicious meals that are easy on your wallet and suitable for your family. Start with the basics and add more as you go along—you’ll find that cooking becomes easier with practice!