Shopping List for the Kitchen – Making Dinner Easier

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The stores are boasting discounts on kitchen items this year, from tools to machines to pots. Perhaps you want to give a gift to a cook? Or do you want to stock up on equipment for your own kitchen?

Here is our "good idea" list to make meal prep faster, tastier, and more manageable. It is based on what our test kitchen used daily over the past year.

Small items
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Sharp knives, including paring knife and chef's knife or santoku knife
  • Serrated utility knife
  • Nonslip cutting boards that can go in the dishwasher - small enough to store but big enough to really chop an onion
  • Nonstick silicone cooking utensils that are always ready and easy to clean
  • Japanese mandolin for slicing veggies very thin and even
  • Mixing bowls for making salads, baked items, batters
  • Baking mitts
  • Aprons - adjustable or wearable cross-back style
  • Colander for draining pasta, potatoes, and veggies
  • Strainer for making labneh, purees, and sauces
  • Lettuce spinner to make your own salads
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Graters and Microplane grater zester
  • Hand-held citrus juicer
  • Small scoops for portioning ice cream or making cookies and muffins
  • Baskets to organize the pantry and spice cabinet
  • Parchment paper - baking, making sauce cones, and easier cleanup on trays for sheet pan dinners
  • Foil for easier grilling
  • Tongs for grilling, grabbing and turning
  • Whisks to whip sauces and creams
  • Thermometer for food safety and accurate roasting
Bigger appliances
  • Air fryer for veggies and fries and crispy items made without frying
  • Instapot for soups, beans, and easy dinners
  • Rice cooker for grains
  • Mixer for baking and making whole-grain pizza dough
  • Blender for sauces and smoothies
  • Food processor for sauces
  • Ice cream maker for fruit sorbet
  • Outdoor propane grill for healthful dinners without heating the kitchen
Pots and pans
  • Sheet pans for sheet pan dinners and baking
  • Dutch oven
  • Soup pot or stock pot
  • Nonstick frying pans
  • Glass baking pans
  • Teapot
Serving dishes, cups, lunchboxes, bento boxes
  • Pitcher to make iced tea or water with lemons
  • Footed glasses for fruit/yogurt desserts
  • Lunchbox or bento box for taking healthier meals on the go
  • Smoothie cups with lids
  • Salad bowls to make a big serve-yourself salad for dinner
  • Boards for serving fruits, snacks, etc.

Kids in the kitchen

  • Waffle maker
  • Panini maker
  • Popcorn maker
  • Yogurt maker
  • Popsicle molds for 100% juice or yogurt
Spice mixes
  • Mediterranean or Italian seasoning
  • Cracked black pepper
  • Fleur de Sel or sea salt flakes
  • Any of your favorite mixes to make it faster and more fun
  • We love all of the seasonings at the Spice House, like this Lake Shore Drive 
  • Flavored vinegar and spray oils

Handout: Shopping List for Kitchen

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