kitchen tools

20 Kitchen Tools and Equipment Every Cook Must Know

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  • Post last modified:January 6, 2023
  • Reading time:20 mins read

Efficient, proper cooking calls for the right kitchen tools and cookery equipment. Instead of buying all the tools you need in one day, you can slowly buy them. Remember, you do not have to break the bank to stock up on kitchen essentials.

Although the market regularly comes up with many tools of cookery, you don’t need to buy them all. You can buy basic kitchen tools and equipment and then move to the complex ones. 

But what tools should you have in your kitchen?

In this article, we will talk about the kitchen tools and utensils every cook must have. 

Kitchen Tools and Equipment

  1. Pans
  2. Pots
  3. Knife
  4. Cutting Board
  5. Ladle
  6. Spatula
  7. Measuring Spoons
  8. Measuring Cups
  9. Mixing Bowls
  10. Whisk
  11. Can Opener
  12. Colander
  13. Tongs
  14. Peeler
  15. Shears
  16. Kitchen Thermometer
  17. Blender
  18. Kitchen Scale
  19. Oven
  20. Mixer

20 Kitchen Tools and Equipment and Their Uses

We created this list to help you know precisely what kitchen tools names and equipment to stock up. Here are 20 kitchen tools and equipment every cook must have:

1. Pans

You cannot cook anything without a pan. If you like deep frying food, you should buy deep pans. If you are solely pan-frying food, you can start with shallow pans. Additionally, if you like cooking Asian food, you must get a wok.

Pans are on top of the list because they let you cook the most basic dish― fried ones. Frying is an essential cooking technique that produces delicious food― from meat to vegetables.

Moreover, pans are made of different materials. You can choose from cast iron, aluminum, and stainless steel. Each of these materials has advantages and disadvantages that you must take note of.

Pans are also available in many types and sizes. For instance, saucepans are made for making sauces and soups. 

Similarly, a sauté pan features a wide flat bottom and vertical sides. They usually go higher than a skillet pan. This allows you to sauté food quickly. 

On the other hand, a skillet pan will likely become the workhorse of your kitchen. You can use a skillet pan for frying, searing, and browning. For these reasons, you must choose a sturdy skillet pan that can last for decades. We suggest buying a stainless skillet pan since it can last up to a lifetime.

2. Pots

Like the first item on this list, you cannot cook anything without a pot. You should buy pots if you like making stew, soup, and other wet dishes. 

Pots are on this list because they let you cook the second most basic dish― soupy ones. 

Just like pans, pots are made of different materials. You can choose cast iron, aluminum, stainless steel, and hybrids. These materials have advantages and disadvantages that you must take note of.

A Pot is an example of equipment in cooking available in many types and sizes. For instance, larger pots are made for making big batches of soup. They fit restaurants that serve soup daily. 

Interestingly, you can also use pots to deep fry food. In addition, you can use them to roast, broil, and boil food, among others. For these reasons, you must choose a sturdy pot that can last up to a lifetime.

3. Knives

Every cook chops, peels, and slices ingredients. Therefore, you need a set of knives that can help you do these properly. 

So, say goodbye to annoying, blunt, slippery knives. If you can afford it, get a professional kitchen knife set containing every knife you need. 

In particular, you will need a chef’s knife, paring knife, slicing knife, carving knife, bread knife, utility knife, santoku knife, cake slicer knife, pizza cutter knife and steak knife. To maintain your knives, you need a knife sharpener and storage block. 

However, if you cannot afford a professional knife set, we suggest you go with a chef’s knife first. This knife can perform the things the other knives mentioned do. 

4. Cutting Board

kitchen tool cutting board

We already covered knives in this kitchen tools and equipment list. So, it’s just fitting to include the cutting board. After all, you can’t just chop and slice food on your countertop.

You can choose from many cutting boards, from wood to plastic. However, you must choose high-quality cutting boards that do not easily chip. 

Remember, low-quality wood and plastic easily chip. The small debris can mix with the food you’re working with. This won’t only mess with your food’s taste. It will mess with your health as well. 

5. Ladle

Next on our list of kitchen paraphernalia examples is a tool you need to serve stew, sauces, and soup. 

Ladles are one of the most essential kinds of kitchen tools and equipment every house needs. They are made of different materials such as stainless steel or wood. Nowadays, you can buy heat-resistant silicone ladles, too. 

In addition, ladles are one of the handiest kitchen gadgets to mankind. After all, how else can you serve delicious soup or stew to your guests or loved ones? 

6. Spatula

A cousin of ladles, a spatula is another essential tool you need. It helps you flip, spread, and scrape food. 

You need spatulas to bake, fry, and sometimes mix food. You can also use them to serve food such as baked macaroni

In addition, you need spatulas, specifically long and narrow ones, to perfect minimalist cake designs and cupcake designs

Lastly, spatulas can help you mix dry and wet ingredients. They come in handy, especially if you do not have a mixer. 

7. Measuring Spoons

Cooking is both an art and a science. To perfect the science part, you need to accurately measure your ingredients. 

When you add too much sugar or salt, your food becomes too sweet or too salty. No one likes that. Hence, you need to have baking measuring tools like measuring spoons. 

Measuring spoons let you accurately measure a dish’s minor ingredients. Since minor ingredients come in tablespoons and teaspoons, you must own measuring spoons.

Remember, you must own a complete set of measuring spoons. Owning one spoon is not enough. However, if you do not have the budget for it, you can start by having one tablespoon and one teaspoon. 

8. Measuring Cups

measuring cup

Similarly, you need measuring cups to measure ingredients accurately. Since some recipes call for ingredients in cups, you need to have measuring cups. 

Measuring cups mostly measure wet ingredients. However, you can also use them to measure dry ingredients (e.g., flour and cornstarch). 

If you lack cupboard space, we suggest you add stackable measuring cups to your kitchen tools and equipment list.

If you cannot buy them right away, you may refer to this tablespoon to cups conversion chart in the meantime. 

9. Mixing Bowls

Whether an amateur or professional cook, you need to mix many ingredients such as herbs, baking ingredients, and deep-fry batter. Hence, you need to have mixing bowls. 

We think glass mixing bowls are the best bang for your buck. 

For one, glass mixing bowls are transparent. Therefore, you can easily see the state of your ingredients as you mix them.

In addition, glass mixing bowls can double as serving bowls. Or you can also get specifically a salad spinner for your vegetables.

10. Whisk

A whisk is among the most used items in the kitchen. Think about it: how many times have you used a whisk? Probably more than a thousand. 

So, it’s crucial to invest in a high-quality, ergonomic whisk. While whisks are often ignored, they remain one of the most essential tools for home cooks and cheks. 

A rule of thumb: choose a whisk you can properly grab so you can whisk eggs, dressings, and sauces without straining your hand.

11. Can Opener

As its name implies, this essential tool opens cans. While can openers typically open cans, you can buy ones that can do many things. 

In particular, multi-purpose can openers open cans, bottles, and jars. They can also screw caps and tear through tape. 

Given these, you can save more money. Just make sure to invest in a high-quality multi-purpose can opener. You must also choose a can opener with an anti-slip and easy-to-grip design. After all, you don’t want to get wounded. 

12. Colander

kitchen tools and equipment colander

Remember when you drain noodles by simply pouring hot water from the pot? Gone are those days.

Thanks to the colander, you can quickly drain pasta. This helpful item also lets you wash vegetables and drain rice quickly. 

Like the whisk, a colander is the most used example of equipment in kitchen. Hence, you must choose a sturdy, non-corrosive colander. Choosing a colander that you can quickly grasp also makes your kitchen life more manageable.

13. Tongs

Tongs have many purposes. Specifically, you can use them for frying, flipping, and serving food. 

Since you must use tongs a lot, you must choose an excellent pair. An excellent pair of tongs are sturdy and ergonomic. They must also be able to handle different sizes of food. 

In addition, tongs must be heat-resistant. You will use them to handle hot food, so make sure they don’t melt away.

14. Peeler

While we have included knives in this list, having a peeler makes your kitchen life more manageable. Most people find it challenging to use peeling knives. Therefore, a peeler becomes a miracle worker for them.

In addition, a peeler significantly speeds up your preparation time. You can peel potatoes, carrots, and other vegetables quicker with a peeler than with a knife. 

If you are one of the people who want to save time and effort, get a peeler as soon as you can.

15. Shears

Just like many items in this list, shears have many functions. You can use it to cut up vegetables, a whole chicken, and herb stems. They can even function like regular scissors (just handle them with care).

In addition, shears are easy to use and clean. So, we suggest you get shears with blades that can separate. This feature lets you clean the blades more properly. 

Shears deserve a place in your kitchen, so you must get them as soon as possible. 

16. Kitchen Thermometer

kitchen thermometer

Many recipes indicate specific temperatures so you can perfect them. To measure your food’s temperature, you need a kitchen thermometer. 

While there are many kitchen thermometers on the market, we suggest you get one with a long, pointy appearance.

For one, you can use them to measure the temperature of any ingredient. They also let you measure temperatures from a distance. Hence, they are safer than thermometers that look like alarm clocks. 

17. Blender

Contrary to popular belief, blenders are not just made for making fruit shakes. You can use them to make sauces, dips, dressings, nut butter, hummus, and more. It’s a workhorse that can handle almost anything you put into it. The immersion blender is a variation of this kitchen gadget, which is handy for smaller blending jobs.

18. Kitchen Scale

As its name suggests, a kitchen scale is used to weigh food. So why do you need it?

To begin with, many recipes require you to weigh certain ingredients. In addition, professional chefs suggest that weighing ingredients before cooking them is among the best ways to make dishes. 

19. Stove

If there’s an appliance that deserves a place in your kitchen, it’s the stove.

As you may well know, you cannot cook without a stove. Kitchen stoves rely on gas or electricity. They can also come with an oven for baking.

20. Oven


Speaking of ovens, you must get one for your kitchen if your budget permits. 

Despite its promising features, there are many low-quality ovens on the market, Hence, you must carefully scrutinize the right oven you’re eyeing. 

You might save money when buying a cheap oven at first. However, you will lose money in the long run once it breaks down and you need to buy a new one. Hence, you must save up for a high-quality oven rather than spending money on a cheap one that’ll break down soon.

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If you’re building a new house or remodeling your existing one, it helps to know which kitchen utensils and equipment you must prioritize. Use this guide to choose the items you’ll prioritize first. But if you have the budget, why not buy them all at once? You might just get yourself a considerable discount.

And remember, it is important to regularly clean and sanitize your kitchen tools and equipment to ensure food safety and quality.


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