Whether you’re preparing food for dozens or only just a few, the right kitchen equipment makes all the difference in making the perfect meal. With options that add precision, convenience, and safety to your kitchen, these ten essentials can turn your kitchen into a high-efficiency dream workstation fit for a five-star gourmet chef.
No kitchen is complete without great countertop appliances. Stand mixers make it easy to prepare dough and frosting, while food processors allow you to chop, grind, and grate vegetables, cheeses, and other ingredients. Fill your home with familiar aromas when you brew up fresh coffee in a sleek coffee maker or single-cup brewing machine. Toaster ovens make it easy to heat breads and bagels, and nothing beats the convenience of a quality microwave oven. Countertop appliances help streamline your food preparation, letting you keep up with the ever-changing demands of your busy schedule without missing a good meal.
An excellent meal deserves a beautiful presentation. While the food demonstrates your culinary prowess when serving meals, your tableware should showcase your impeccable taste and sense of style. Table-settings require a variety of different pieces depending on the formality of your dining room, but good flatware is a vital addition. Pair beautiful salad and dinner forks with soup and dessert spoons at each seat, and then include a butter or steak knife as the meal directs. Matching dishware help set the tone for a wonderful evening with family and friends, and never underestimate the impact of freshly cooked food displayed on gorgeous serving platters or earthy wooden slabs. The right dinnerware is a crucial addition to any kitchen, both for daily meals and carefully planned get-togethers.
Good cookware can make all the difference between choice cuisine and a culinary catastrophe. Basic cookware includes pots and pans, metal bowls, griddles, baking sheets, and everything else you use to cook and bake your food. Most types of cookware are available in plenty of premium material options, such as stainless steel, copper, and even cast iron. Pots and pans that feature a non-stick coating are great for preventing food from caking on and makes them easy to clean. Most sets also feature heat-proof handles and tempered glass lids. Some cookware incorporates a special finish or enamel that add colorful character.
Setting a great table takes more than just plates and flatware. Like any area in your home, your dining table deserves decor, linens, and accent pieces that speak to your unique personality. Tablecloths are foundational to any setting, and runner cloths add plenty of chic, both on their own or on top of your tablecloth. Placemats add a layer of charm, while protecting your table and cloth from any accidental spills. Reusable fabric napkins, neatly rolled or folded in napkin rings, are an excellent way to give your spread a refined and stately look.
Both stylish and functional, hand and dish towels are a vital addition to any kitchen. Kitchen towels are made of everything from cotton or linen to polyester microfiber, and often feature colors and patterns designed to coordinate with a variety of home decor schemes. Towels used in the kitchen look great hung on a rack or oven door handle, but can wear out over time. If you’re worried about the longevity of your kitchen towels, it can be helpful to invest in an additional set of towels specifically for drying dishes and wiping counters so you don’t have to dirty your more decorative ones.
Keeping your clothing clean while you work in the kitchen is crucial when you’re making food and are pressed for time, but that’s not the only thing that aprons help with. While they’re made from a variety of different materials, most aprons are machine washable, and designed to withstand the rigors of food preparation with ease. Aprons with sewn-in pockets on the front or sides make it easy to keep kitchen implements on hand and accessible as you work. Many aprons feature fun sayings and graphics that add a dash of tongue-in-cheek character to any recipe. With dozens of colors, hundreds of designs, and both full and half-size options available, you’re sure to find the perfect apron for you and your kitchen.
Hot pads and oven mitts are some of the most important pieces of safety equipment in your kitchen. Not only do they protect your hands and arms when taking pans out of the oven, but they also protect your counter and tabletop from the underside of hot pots and pans as well. Oven mitts and hot pads are made from special materials that resist heat and make it easy to hold and move hot items. Cloth pads and mitts are usually extra padded, while materials like silicone block heat with a relatively thin layer. Although functionality should be your ultimate consideration in your search for oven mitts and hot pads, there are tons of unique styles and patterns that pair beautifully with your existing kitchen decor.
Whether you’re sharing an evening glass of wine with friends or reveling in an ice-cold lemonade on a hot summer’s day, the right glasses are vital to how you dine and entertain. There are dozens of glass styles, suited to a variety of beverages and drinking needs. Clear, colorless glasses are a classic staple, but there are plenty of colorful options to choose from as well. Add refinement to your spread with stemware like wine glasses and champagne flutes, or keep things casual with tumblers, highballs, and tea glasses. Goblets add character to any holiday gathering, and nothing beats a mason jar for iced tea or chic seasonal cocktails
Quality cutlery is crucial to any kitchen, making it easy to cut and prepare meats, vegetables, and breads. Cutting boards come in plastic, stone, and wooden varieties, and are designed for resilience against knife blades and easy cleaning. Knives are sold individually and in sets, and some include stylish knife blocks to store different sized knives and kitchen shears. Steak knives are important when setting the table for a steak dinner, and can often be bought in larger sets to accommodate every place setting. Although knives are designed to last for several years, long-term use will inevitably dull their blades, and both hand-held and countertop knife sharpeners will keep your cutlery in razor-sharp condition for as long as you own them.
While a variety of tools and appliances make food preparation a breeze, keeping things organized and accessible makes all the difference between a chaotic kitchen and a harmonious one. Luckily storage solutions for the kitchen feature hundreds of unique and innovative options for protecting and organizing all your kitchen wares. Great additions like wine and spice racks, rolling drawer units, and even pantry shelving keep your space neat and orderly. Pot racks help to prevent scuffing on your pots and pans, while keeping them at arm’s reach, while tiered dinnerware shelves ensure the long-lasting protection of your plates and bowls. Flatware drawer inserts are another great choice when you want to maintain the accessibility and usefulness of serving and dining implements. With solutions for everything from canned goods to mops and brooms, quality storage will transform every aspect of your kitchen experience.