Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
Nov 5, 2006 12:45 PM

what to buy for a new (home) kitchen

Looking at what one actually needs in terms of kitchen equipment for a new home.

These are the items that I think would be useful:

Kitchen Aid mixer
food processor
rice cooker
good set of knives

Not sure if these are necessary but they sound great:

crockpot/slow cooker
pressure cooker

Not really useful:
bread making machine (takes up too much space)
waffle iron
sandwich maker
George Foreman grill

Any thoughts?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. 1. Good quality cutting board(s)
    2. 2 or 3 quality tongs
    3. Plenty of towels
    4. Measuring cups and spoons
    5. A funnel

    Have fun at the store

    1 Reply
    1. re: TonyO

      I'd flip-flop the rice cooker and slow cooker/crockpot. I'd find the crockpot WAY more useful than a rice cooker. I'm just a pot-on-the-stove type of rice cooker person.

      In addition, as Tony O suggested - good cutting boards, a graduated set of measuring cups and spoons (I like the Tupperware ones with the additional 1/8 tsp. and 1/2 Tbsp. and the 1/3 and 2/3 cup measuring cups), and tongs and several different size whisks.

      And wooden spoons - GOOD hardwood wooden spoons, not the flimsy pine crap they sell. Try and find olivewood - I'm always reaching for wooden spoons over almost any other utensil for stirring. I collect antique ones - stronger wood, well used and well loved and have probably about 20 of them in varying sizes and shapes.

      Mixing bowls - My old standby is always the set of Pyrex graduated sizes in whatever pattern/color happens to strike my fancy.

      Little spreader knives - you can find plain stainless steel - I use these all the time when I need a Tbsp. of butter. Also good for cheese plates when entertaining.

      As for knives - don't go with a set. Go handle several different types of knives and see how the feel in the hand - weight, fit, ease of use. You might find you like a Henckel's Professional S for one type of use, and a Global for another. Pick and choose among them.

    2. I may be alone in this but I ahve never seen the need for a rice cooker. I have never had any trouble cooking rice of any sort. As to a set of knives, as much as the producers would like you to buy sets and obtail things you don't/won't use or need. The better way is to pick out individual knives sleecting them for use and how they fit your hand. A nice Le Creuset casserole is a better selection than a slow cooker/crockpot and more versatile too. Pressuer cookers and waffle bakers need a place to be stored but if you have either and like brbg ibg them out a few times a year then okay, the rest of the stuff is nice but.....

      TonyO's ideas are good. To his list I would add measuring spoons too and both measuring cups and spoons in odd sizes too. Funnels in metal and plastic and assorted sizes. A few bib aprons. A scale, eletronic which can measure on oz and grams, Piza stone and peel. A mortar and pestle is handy to have too. Oh a good can opener, the sort which breaks the seal with the lid and never comes in contact with the food.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Candy

        Kitchen Aid mixer - agree, we use ours all the time
        food processor - we don't have one, but it is on the top of our list of what we want next, just easier to use than the alternative.
        rice cooker - I agree with candy, never had the need for one and our rice always turns out great.
        toaster - yep (toaster oven's are also nice, and are great for reheating pizza, cooking a small batch of fries, etc.
        good set of knives - yep - would look at buying the knives individually, starting with the ones you use most.

        Not sure if these are necessary but they sound great:

        crockpot/slow cooker - don't use ours a ton, but when you do, it's irreplacable
        pressure cooker - ?

        Not really useful:
        bread making machine (takes up too much space) We actually use our once a week. It makes great bread and we also use it for pizza dough.
        waffle iron - we use our waffle iron all the time - it's great, and makes for a nice breakfast. We have -

        sandwich maker - nope
        George Foreman grill - never had one

      2. The food processor and KitchenAid are bread makers--they will allow you to make better bread than a bread machine.

        What about a grill pan instead of a foreman?

        A toaster oven instead of a toaster? This is really the unsung hero of appliances--great for toasting nuts and other small jobs.

        1. If you are going to get a rice cooker you won't need a slow cooker, a rice cooker can do all of that. I suggest getting "The Ultimate Rice Cooker cookbook by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufman to show you all the ways it can be used. That is if you get it, I would put it in the pretty nice to have category, though I am sure you'd survive without it.

          I agree with the toaster oven, it can do so much more than just a toaster, make sure you get one that has a top mount to mount to the underneath of your cabinent if you want to save on counter space.

          I have a waffle iron I use it quite a bit, with a good waffle mix it is a treat and really fast to make. Mine is fairly small and stores upright. I also have a small george forman grill which I received as a gift. I use it for bacon, sausage, hotdogs, and grilled sandwiches which is fairly often. I like it because I just stick it in and tend to my other items I am cooking and bacon is the best because I don't have to deal with all the grease popping up at me. Also I don't have to use butter on my grilled sandwiches because of the non-stick part of it. On the other hand it does take up precious counter space. All of these things depend on your personal preferences.

          1. Good-sized pastry board if you bake pies and tarts with any frequency. Cookie sheets and Silpats (or equivalent) to line them with.

            I agree with TonyO and Candy about tongs--heatproof fingers!--and knife sets and a scale and staying away from dedicated gadgets like a rice cooker or bread maker. Similarly with a dedicated double boiler--a stainless steel bowl (get several, in different sizes, Bed Bath & Beyond has inexpensive sets) perched over a smaller-diameter saucepan of water does the job just fine. Two or three Pyrex measuring cups in different sizes are very handy.

            I get a lot of use out of a mid-price (under $100) microwave for defrosting. Oh, and a big (10- or 12-quart) stock pot for cooking pasta and making stock.

            1 Reply
            1. re: rootlesscosmo

              I forgot to mention a good heavy ball-bearing loaded rolling pin. Banton is a good brand. I have several pins of different types and weight. French taperd type, a very narrow antique for pasta doughs, marble and most often reach for the Banton. WS carries the odd sized measuring cups and spoons. When you are doing a lot of cooking or bakining they can be real time savers. Yes, I know measuring our 2/3 C. using a 1/3 C. measure twice seems like a little thing or 1.5 C. But doing it in one motion is amazingly more efficient.