Being a home chef is no easy task. A commercial kitchen often has an entire crew of people to ensure everything runs at top efficiency, but those of us at home normally run a team of just one (or 2, if you’re lucky). That means it’s crucial to have all the right tools and equipment to make your meals (and life) much easier. All the kitchen equipment on this list can be found in our kitchen, and our success in the kitchen is, in great part, thanks to these items.
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Global G-2 8-Inch Chef’s Knife – $89.95
I’ll be honest, huge razor sharp chef’s knives were quite intimidating to me as a new cook. Maybe it was my mother’s voice ringing in my mind saying, “Don’t play with knives, Sammy,” but knives are such an essential part of the cooking process, so you definitely need a good one. This Global chef’s knife definitely gets a lot of use in our home, and is up for any challenge we throw at it.
Benriner Japanese Mandolin Slicer – $23.20
I remember seeing perfectly uniform sliced vegetables and wondering when my knife skills would reach that level of precision. Looking back now, many applications probably used a mandolin slicer to achieve that perfection, and it is a gem to have in your kitchen. It’s not as frequently used as other items on this list, but the results are always wonderful, and it has saved serious prep time on many occasions.
Teakhaus Teak Cutting Board – $88.98
Not only is this a beautiful kitchen essential, but it’s also built for years of consistent use. While it shouldn’t necessarily be the only cutting board at your finger tips (a plastic meat cutting board is also a must), the work space this provides makes it a prepping dream.
Bonus Essential: Cut and Carve Chopping Board by Joseph Joseph
There has been a lot of innovations in the world of non-stick cookware, but we’ve found that either the lifespan of the pans leave something to be desired or they just don’t work at all. Enter the carbon steel pan, which has been a commercial kitchen staple for a very long time. Even if you’ve never heard of this essential you’ve certainly eaten food prepared in one of these gems.
Vitamix Professional Series 500 Blender – $528.95
Did you just get sticker shock? I know I did when I started researching this blender. As I read the reviews, the overwhelming consensus is that it’s completely and utterly worth it. Although we’ve only had it about 6 months, it is an absolutely incredible tool that is built sturdy and strong to last. There are many refurbished models out there too that come with a more pocket-friendly price tag.
Sheet pans are best known for their forte in the cookie baking realm, but they are so much more versatile than that. From roasted vegetables to baked chicken, sheet cakes to perfectly cooked bacon, this is another piece that we are using almost daily.
Bonus Essential: Nonstick Silicone Baking Mat
Finding confidence in the kitchen is not easy for anyone, but one piece on this list that helped me find a little bit more confidence was my very first French (Dutch) Oven. Beautiful on the outside, and hard working on the inside, this oven is great for scrumptious soups, the best bolognese, and even makes fresh-baked bread like a champ.
Mixing bowls come in so many shapes, sizes, and colors, it can be easy to choose whatever is the prettiest. It happens to us all, trust me. When it comes to practically any job you can throw at it, these mixing bowls take the cake (batter). They’re oven, microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe and won’t absorb the flavors of your food like a plastic bowl will.
A Well-Stocked Pantry – Priceless
One major step in our progress as home chefs came from putting together a well-stocked pantry. What does that mean exactly? It means keeping a treasure trove of frequently used food products on hand in the event you need to whip up something on the fly. Forget an ingredient at the store? Easily substitute for something you already have, and you can make an original masterpiece! While the upfront cost may be daunting, you’ll end up saving by building meals around your pantry staples. Check out a great list to get you started here.
Sansaire Sous Vide Immersion Circulator – $199.99
A sous what? If you’re not familiar with this one, you’re not alone. It wasn’t till Grant’s cousin, Julian, brought his over to cook one night, and the rest is history. If you’re apprehensive about cooking meats of any kind to the proper temperature, look no further. This immersion circulator does it right every time. You’re essentially controlling the temperature of a water bath to a very specific degree and then introducing whatever you’d like to cook (eggs and vegetables, too) till it’s done to your liking.
Did I miss an essential that you just can’t live without in your kitchen? Let me know in the comments below!
Original feature image courtesy of Annie Spratt