14 Kitchen Must Haves

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Beautiful contemporary kitchen.

Ahh, the kitchen. A modern landing zone for some of the most specific and one-task oriented gadgets the world has to offer. For any specific cooking or baking task, there’s a kitchen item designed to perform it. What’s really powerful about the growth in the kitchen accessories market is that there has been more investment in how they can visually add to our homes.

If you think about it, the kitchen is an aesthetic powerhouse in the home. It seems that more and more, companies are learning to fuse functionality and design into the products on the market, so therein lies the biggest question of all: “what exactly do I need?” Below are some of the items that everyone should have in their kitchen:

Chef’s Knife

Finding the perfect chef’s knife can be difficult. Many people settle for a cheaper option that ends up dull and virtually useless within months of purchase. We would recommend doing some research on the subject before purchasing this tool. Overall, you’ll want to look for something that is durable and can perform multiple tasks. Some knives are designed with a specific function in mind, limiting what you can do with it (without dulling the blade). Don’t be afraid to spend a little more on a chef’s knife. In doing so, you can avoid having to buy an entire knife set. Plus, the time investment for taking care of just one knife versus a whole set will leave you more time to enjoy using it!

Bestseller No. 1
MOSFiATA 8" Super Sharp Professional Chef's Knife with Finger Guard and Knife Sharpener, German High Carbon Stainless Steel EN1.4116 with Micarta Handle and Gift Box
  • 【8 Inch Chef's Knife】: This MOSFiATA 8 Inch Chef Knife is made of high-quality German stainless steel that resists rust, corrosion and discoloration. It can be used for your daily kitchen tasks of chopping, slicing, dicing and mincing of all kinds of meat, vegetables, fruits and bread. It is suitable for both home and restaurant kitchens.
  • 【Sharp Edge & 14~16° Sharpening Angle】: Sharpness is key. Hand-polished by craftsmen with decades of experience to ensure its durability. The thickness of this kitchen knife is 2.5mm. Its hand-polished edge is 14-16 degrees per side, which is sturdy and sharp to get the job done perfectly. Rockwell hardness: 56 ± 2 HRC.
  • 【Sturdy Ergonomic Design & Micarta Handle】: The solid Micarta handle minimizes wrist tension while providing a secure, comfortable grip no matter your hand size or where you grip. Even after prolonged use, your palm and wrist will not fatigue. Ideal for both people who cook frequently and those who just like preparing snacks. The durability and reliability of the kitchen knife are secured by the triple rivet design that attaches the handle firmly onto the blade

Cast Iron Skillet

While cast iron is heavier than your standard non-stick pan, the functionality of this item is much higher. Traditional nonstick pans often have plastic handles which can melt if misplaced on the stovetop. Moreover, non-stick pans are less versatile when it comes to performance. Cast iron performs well at high heat levels and can be used on the stovetop, in the oven, or even over a campfire. If properly taken care of, cast iron will last a lifetime and can be passed down from one generation to another.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet With Assist Handle, 10.25", Black
  • One Lodge Pre-Seasoned 10.25 Inch Cast Iron Skillet
  • Assist handle for better control
  • Unparalleled heat retention and even heating

Instant Pot

The Instant Pot is a modern must-have in any kitchen. Not only is it a pressure cooker, but the newer models perform dozens of various functions. You can use this kitchen essential in so many ways, from cooking rice, to sauteing vegetables, to slow cooking meat or soaking beans. Did you know that you can cook an entire frozen chicken in an Instant Pot in less than two hours? With this one item you can consolidate many standard appliances into one without the complication of extra attachments and parts to wash.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Instant Pot DUO60 6 Qt 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Maker and Warmer (IP-DUO60), Stainless Steel/Black
  • 7-IN-1 APPLIANCES: electric pressure cooker, rice cooker, slow cooker, yogurt maker, steamer, sauté pan and food warmer
  • QUICK ONE-TOUCH COOKING with 13 Smart Touch customizable programs for pressure cooking ribs, soups, beans, rice, poultry, yogurt, desserts and more on autopilot
  • COOK FAST OR COOK SLOW with pressure cooking up to 70% faster than traditional cooking methods or slow cooking for traditional grandma-approved recipes

Measuring Cups

It almost feels like this one goes without saying, but if you don’t currently have measuring cups, they will change your life for the better. Measuring cups are essential to baking any recipe to perfection and if you’re on a health journey, can actually help you to standardize your snack portions, as well. We would personally recommend a set of metal measuring cups because, as stated before, plastic and hot surfaces really aren’t the best combination.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Pyrex Glass Measuring Cup Set (3-Piece, Microwave and Oven Safe),Clear
  • Includes 1-cup, 2-cup and 4-cup versions
  • Easy to read measurements in cups, ounces and milliliters. Features a curved spout for precise pouring and easy-grip handles for comfort
  • Durable high-quality tempered glass is dishwasher, freezer, microwave and preheated oven safe

Mixing Bowl Set

You’d be hard-pressed to get by in the kitchen without mixing bowls around. Not only are they great for baking, but they are also super handy food storage containers, as well. An added bonus is if you can find a set that has handles, as they are easier to move about the kitchen, especially when retrieving food from the fridge. Bowls with handles also make good popcorn containers for movie night!

Bestseller No. 1
Mixing Bowls with Airtight Lids, 20 piece Stainless Steel Metal Nesting Bowls, AIKKIL Non-Slip Colorful Silicone Bottom, Size 7, 3.5, 2.5, 2.0,1.5, 1,0.67QT, Great for Mixing, Baking, Serving
  • ✅DURABLE & HIGH QUALITY STAINLESS STEEL: AIKKIL bowls set are constructed of mirror-finish interior and fingerprint-proof matte-finish exterior, which is durable and rustproof. High-quality food grade stainless steel for fingerprint-proof will never retaining any odors, bacteria, or stains.Thicken the edge of the bowl makes them easier to hold. Elegant look and convenient design will be your great helper in the kitchen
  • 🌻NON SLIP SILICONE BOTTOMS: Each of the bowl comes with silicone bottom to keep the bowl from moving around on the countertop while mixing, kneading or whipping food, you can easily mix all your favorite ingredients and foods and need not to worry about the bowls will wobble when mixing, beating and whipping
  • ✅NO-DEFORMED &TIGHT LIDS: Unlike other mixing bowls on the market, our airtight lids not warp or deform, closely fit the bowls, keep your food fresh, tight fitting lids are great for food storage, great choice for storing food for longer

Cutting Board

This is a kitchen essential because it protects your countertops from unnecessary damage. A personal favorite material for cutting boards is glass (because of how quickly it can be cleaned off), but wooden boards are definitely the most practical all-around option. Plastic boards are the most budget-friendly option but they are quickly cut up by knives and won’t last nearly as long as the others. Glass and marble are sturdy options but will dull out your kitchen knives faster, so they may not be the best option if you have a limited knife set. For durability, surface material, and longevity, wood is definitely the best option.

SaleBestseller No. 1
HOMWE Kitchen Cutting Board (3-Piece Set) - Juice Grooves with Easy-Grip Handles, Non-Porous, Dishwasher Safe - Multiple Sizes (Gray)
  • Precision Cutting Surface – Crafted with a thick, heavy-duty plastic, our cutting boards provide a clean food prep surface for every meal.
  • Multiple Prep Board Pack – Each order comes with three distinct cutting board sizes, including small, medium and large; perfect for multi-course meals or all-day use.
  • Juice Grooves & Handles – These reversible cutting boards feature juice grooves to catch sticky or acidic drippings and non-slip handles to protect you and surfaces.

Tongs

You might not think this is a kitchen essential, but once you consider all of its functions, you might change your mind. Tongs get used in so many different ways, the most practical of which is pulling corn on the cob from a pot of boiling hot water. If you’ve ever attempted to do that with a slotted spoon or worse, a fork, you know what we’re talking about. If you haven’t attempted it, please don’t. Because they can be used for tossing salads, plating bacon, mixing noodles and sauces, or flipping chicken nuggets in the oven (to name a few), they’ve made the list.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Hotec Premium Stainless Steel Locking Kitchen Tongs with Silicon Tips, Set of 2-9" and 12"
  • TOP QUALITY: Hotec kitchen tongs are constructed with high quality stainless steel, sturdy, heat resistance, anti-rust, anti-corrosion, light weight, easy to handle, like new forever. This tongs for cooking comes with 2 sizes, 9 inch and 12 inch.
  • EASY TO STORE: These kitchen tongs have locking mechanism, pull the ring for lock and push for unlock, super easy operation. Hang them with the hanging loop after use or put in the drawer by pulling the ring to lock it, space saving.
  • ENGINEERING FOR SAFETY: Updated new design pattern for the handle, better protects your hands from cutting by the edge when you grip the handle. Easy to control the handle and to eliminate wobbling & any risk of burning your hands

Storage Containers

Whether you cook at home or eat out for every meal, you will need these in your kitchen. Perfect for storing leftovers, takeout, snacks, meal preps, etc, the hardest part of owning these is keeping them organized. Try to opt for a sturdy plastic that is easily stackable. We’ve found that the weight of glass containers adds up quickly if you’re taking them on the go, so thick, good-quality plastic sets are the best option for both inside and outside of the house.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Chef's Path Airtight Food Storage Containers Set - 14 PC - Kitchen & Pantry Organization - BPA-Free - Plastic Canisters with Durable Lids Ideal for Cereal, Flour & Sugar - Labels, Marker & Spoon Set
  • ✮ Superior bundle - Your complete bundle comes with 14 BPA-free premium food-storage canisters, measuring spoon set, a chalkboard marker & bonus reusable chalkboard labels allowing you to organize your pantry like never before. This set comes in a beautiful box which makes it an ideal gift for any family. Nobody else in the market provides more value to you than us
  • ✮ Best bang for your buck - We provide a higher total storing capacity unlike most others on Amazon. Includes 2 extra large containers (2.5quart /2.8 liters), 4 large containers (1.8quart /2.0 liters), 4 medium containers (1.2quart /1.4 liter), 4 small containers (0.7quart /0.8 liters). These air tight containers come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes for all your storage needs
  • ✮ Verstile contianers - many great uses: These air-tight food-safe keepers are not only ideal for storing dry foods such as flour, sugar, rice, grain, cereals, nuts, beans, snacks, pasta spaghetti, coffee and tea and but they are also perfect for holding liquids such as water, juice, soup, and more. The 4 sided-locking lids with silicone seal ensure that no air or water enters, keeping your favorite snacks super fresh and dry.

Baking Trays

The uses for a baking tray are endless, whether food-related or not. You can put freshly cut banana slices on a baking tray in the freezer to save money on pre-bagged frozen fruit. Great for baking desserts, roasting vegetables, or marinating meat, a set of solid baking trays will serve you in more ways than you can dream.

Bestseller No. 1
Super Thick 0.7mm Nonstick Cookie Sheet Pan, Metal Baking Tray, 3 Pack Baking Sheet Pans, Different Sizes Cookie Pan Set
  • DURABLE: Our nonstick cookie sheets are made of heavy-weight carbon steel, with warp-resistant construction. Our baking sheets are 0.7MM thickness, 2X thicker than normal thin baking sheets. Thanks to this thickness, our baking sheets provide durability & fast even heat distribution for uniform browning oven-safe up to 450°F. These will never warp or bend out of shape.
  • FOOD SAFE MATERIAL: Our cookie sheet set does not include toxic material like PFOA, PFOS, lead, cadmium, nickel or toxic metals. They are food safe. Our cookie sheets’ durable nonstick coating helps ensure quick effortless food release.
  • EASY TO CLEAN: The cookie sheet is non-stick & easy to clean up. Hand wash recommended. For best results, wash in warm, soapy water before first and after each use. Our baking sheet won't rust over time. It'll last for years.

Silicone Baking Mat

Going along with your baking trays, silicone baking mats have risen in popularity over the past few years, replacing single-use aluminum and paper products designed to keep pans clean. They also prevent foods like zucchini and squash from getting caked onto the pans and can even be used as a protective surface on your countertop while you prepare sandwiches, roll doughs, or form cookies. Because of the mess they can help avoid and their reusability, they make the list.

Bestseller No. 1
Amazon Basics Silicone, Non-Stick, Food Safe Baking Mat - Pack of 2
  • 2 non-stick silicone baking mats for easy and convenient baking
  • No need for oil, cooking sprays, or parchment paper
  • Oven-safe up to 480 degrees F

Salad Spinner

While many would argue that a salad spinner is NOT an essential addition to the kitchen, we would argue what a great colander the inner lining of a salad spinner makes. A salad spinner can act as a bowl with a lid, a pasta strainer, a fresh fruit salad container, and of course, a salad spinner. We would caution against a collapsible version, however, they are not nearly as versatile.

Bestseller No. 1
Farberware Easy to use pro Pump Spinner with Bowl, Colander and Built in draining System for Fresh, Crisp, Clean Salad and Produce, Large 6.6 quart, Green
  • HEALTHY MADE EASY: Our Pro Pump Salad Spinner makes it so easy to prepare nutritious foods every night of the week. This device helps you to clean and serve salad greens and other produce, including fruits and even berries, in seconds
  • ENOUGH FOR EVERYONE: The generous capacity of our Salad Spinner (6.65 quart bowl, 5.25 quart basket) means you can pack enough to feed your entire family!
  • SO EASY: We know you're busy when it comes to making meals. That's why we've engineered our Salad Spinner for convenient one-handed operation. Simply push down on the spinner mechanism to begin; then tap the break button when done.

Can Opener

Can openers are essential because there may come a time when the power goes out and all you have is canned food available. We all know the struggle of not having a can opener and trying to open one with a bottle opener. Be prepared for anything! Invest in a sturdy opener or even an electric one, it will come in handy for opening cans and jars, especially on camping trips!

SaleBestseller No. 1
KitchenAid Classic Multifunction Can Opener / Bottle Opener, 8.34-Inch, Black
  • STAINLESS STEEL BLADE: The KitchenAid can opener is made from strong 420 J2 stainless steel that is designed to easily puncture and open all types of cans and bottles
  • INTEGRATED BOTTLE OPENER: An integrated bottle opener is built into the head of the can opener
  • EASY TO TURN KNOB: The can opener's large, easy-to-turn knob makes opening cans an easy task

Blender

The great thing about blenders is that they come in at so many price points within the market that there is a model for every house, whether you make smoothies every day or you’re only interested in making sauces a couple times a year. You can get by with a Magic Bullet blender before upgrading to a bigger, more industrial-strength option. Either way, you’ll find that there are great options for every budget and home.

Bestseller No. 1
Ninja Professional Countertop Blender with 1100-Watt Base, 72 Oz Total Crushing Pitcher and (2) 16 Oz Cups for Frozen Drinks and Smoothies (BL660), Gray
  • Ninja professional blender with Nutri Ninja Cups has 1100 watts of professional performance power with 3 speeds, pulse, and single serve functions
  • 72 ounce total crushing pitcher pulverizes ice to snow in seconds for creamy frozen drinks and smoothies
  • Two 16 ounce Nutri Ninja cups with to go lids are perfect for creating personalized, nutrient rich drinks to take on the go

Spatula

When we say each kitchen needs a spatula, we’re talking about a sturdy spatula that’s not going to melt if left in the pan or on the burner. Our favorite is a metal head spatula with a rubber grip handle, wide enough for flipping pancakes or several chicken nuggets or vegetables at a time. A good spatula can even be used for stirring sauces in a pan, proving its versatility in the kitchen.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Unicook 2 Pack Flexible Silicone Spatula, Turner, 600F Heat Resistant, Ideal for Flipping Eggs, Burgers, Crepes and More, Black
  • 2 Pack-including Large and Small spatula. Sturdy, durable construction with a comfortable nonslip handle and silicone head bonded to a flexible stainless-steel core. Ideal for flipping eggs, burgers, crepes and more.
  • Thin, flexible silicone head with an angled edge that glides easily beneath food without damaging it.
  • Spatula head is made of supreme silicone, heat resistant to 600°F.

Final Thoughts

What’s great about the kitchen is that it has endless potential for design and function. With so many products on the market, it’s hard to decide which gadgets are essential and which are too specific for your needs. Ultimately what determines whether an appliance or kitchen gadget is a “must have” is how much use you get out of it. The comprehensive list above outlines some of the most versatile and functional equipment you could need either in or out of the kitchen.