Once upon a time, there was a cute brown haired, brown eyed little girl who loved to spend time with her grandma in the kitchen. Come dinner time, she would drag her step stool across the kitchen floor and position it right next to her. She would intently watch and listen as her grandma showed her how to peel potatoes, slice onions, and clean a chicken for that evenings meal.
No college courses or YouTube videos could ever teach this, now forty something young lady, what she learned on top of that stool right next to her grandma. It was something this little girl would cherish forever.
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She Taught Me All I Know
That little brown haired, brown eyed girl was me. I loved spending time with my grandma in the kitchen. She was such an amazing cook. Nothing fancy, just good ole home cooking made with lots of love.
Don’t Just Watch
Watching wasn’t allowed in her kitchen, if you were in there… you were going to help.
I was cutting, peeling, slicing, and cooking before the age of 5 I think. OK, maybe not cooking, but she had me there right beside her doing something pretty much as soon as I could stand. It was never boring and we always had fun.
Good Kitchen Tools Are Your Foundation
My cooking style is founded pretty much on what I grew up with. Good solid kitchen tools that will get the job done and get it done well.
Although my childhood kitchen didn’t have a food processor or a immersion blender, I’m thinking my grandma would be more then happy to have used them back in the day.
Having good, well made kitchen tools makes cooking a more enjoyable task. If you don’t have the proper gadgets on hand, you may find yourself getting frustrated and thinking it’s not worth the time.
Investing in the right tools can make a world of difference when it comes to becoming a better cook and can actually make it enjoyable to be in the kitchen.
The Top 10 Must Have Kitchen Tools To Always Have On Hand
Not knowing what to buy or where to even start when it comes to kitchen gadgets is something I hear quite often. People want to be more adventurous in the kitchen, but just don’t know how.
So below you will find some of the kitchen tools I use the most. The title of this post says 10 because I had to limit myself. I have so many favorite gadgets that I will have to come back another time and add more, but for now, here are some great tools to get you started.
Number One – A Large Cast Iron Skillet
As I start to type this description I started to think that I could have done a whole separate post on cast iron. I LOVE me some cast iron. It’s just something about the weight and the ease of clean up with it.
Growing up we used cast iron for everything ( I even have some of my grandmothers cast iron pots) and now in my own kitchen, they are my everyday go to skillets of use.
I have a large skillet (like the one pictured above) and I also have a few smaller skillets, a roaster, a griddle, a grill pan, well you get the picture… I love cast iron.
Wellness Mama has a great article, What Are The Safest Cookware Options? that can help you distinguish what kind of cookware you would like. Cast Iron comes in number two on her list.
Number Two – Good Knives
When I first got married and was officially cooking on my own, I didn’t think much about what kind of knives I was using. I did however find myself getting frustrated because I couldn’t dice or chop things properly.
It wasn’t until I received a nice set of knives as a gift that I realized that they really do make a difference.
These are just example of a good knife set. Prices for good knives can go well above $300, but if you are like me, and on a budget, here is a list of highly rated knives that you can start with.
Number Three – Cutting Boards
This goes with the good knives for sure. If you are going to invest in some good knives, you want to make sure you have a nice cutting board to be working with too.
For the sake of time, I won’t go into why I DO NOT use plastic boards, so now I will just say that I use wood cutting boards.
Even though they are not as easily cleaned and cared for as plastic cutting boards, I prefer the sturdiness and well, non plastic, use of a these bamboo boards.
Number Four – Immersion Blender
I cooked for years without one of these and now I don’t know how I did it.
When it comes to making soups and sauces, this is a must have. No pouring hot liquids in a blender and making a horrible mess. No, this mighty little blender just goes right down into the pot and does the work for you.
This one is especially my favorite because it’s so easy to clean. The bottom twists off and is dishwasher safe. It also comes in a lot of different colors, so it makes a great gift.
Number Five – Vegetable Peeler
Yup, a simple vegetable peeler is on my list. Nothing to fancy smanshy either. I have found the ones with all the bells and whistles actually don’t work that well, so the simpler the better.
This is almost the exact one my grandma used and it’s still my favorite today.
Number Six – Garlic Press
OK. You have GOT to have a garlic press. Just about any dish is made better by some fresh garlic, so a garlic press is a must.
I will admit that every once and awhile I will use a jar of minced garlic when I’m in a rush, but NOTHING beast fresh garlic.
Number Seven – Salad Spinner
We love to eat our greens. Lettuce, kale, spinach, you name it we love it. So having a salad spinner comes in quite handy for cleaning.
They are super easy to use and can make preparing a nice salad an easy task.
Number Eight – Juicer
Here’s another very simple gadget that can bring a lot of flavor to a dish.
Having the juice of a fresh lemon to drizzle over fish or a fresh lime to add to your guacamole… well that’s just deliciousness right there.
Number Nine – Blender
Now, I know number four is an immersion blender, but this type of blender is something different I promise.
Over the past few years I have found myself using these type of blenders just about every day. Just a few months ago, the one I had for about two years stopped working. So after a bit of research I purchased this Ninja IQ Blender.
I wasn’t sure exactly how much I was going to like it until I started to use it. The IQ part is my favorite. I can put all my smoothie ingredients in and walk away. In about 45 seconds the Ninja has it mixed up perfectly.
I also use this for making cashew cream and my Not So Cheasy Nacho Cheese. This little thing is pretty awesome!
And last but not least…
Number Ten – A Coffee Maker
If you know me at all you are probably wondering why this isn’t at number one. Well, I was trying to shake things up and little and also wanted to focus on the cooking aspect of things.
Yet, no kitchen is ever complete without a good coffee maker.
This Cuisinart Coffee Maker is my favorite, but I also have a cheaper one I bought at a Black Friday sale to keep on hand for parties and for emergencies… like God forbid the good ones breaks. LoL.
So There Ya Go
That’s my list. Well, at at least for now.
I think my grandma would look over this least and agree with just about every single one. She’d probably bulk at the prices of course, but I can imagine she’d love spending time in the kitchen with me enjoying them as much as I do.
What About You?
What are your favorite kitchen tools and must haves? Leave me a comment and let me know. I’d love to hear all about them.
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