Most of my content is planned and shot a month in advance. So as I look over my editorial calendar, I find it interesting that a couple of my posts really relate to our current “stay at home to flatten the curve” situation!
As we spend more time at home, staying busy during the day (and a day spent off the news and social media) is immensely helpful for my mental health during these unprecedented times. But staying busy does not mean we have to necessarily pressure ourselves into writing a novel or becoming fluent in a language. I like taking on little tasks instead. Tasks that I can cross off a list. I also love to de-clutter and organize. If I have to spend more time at home, then I want to feel good about the space I am in!
One room we might find ourselves in a lot more is the kitchen. For some, they may love that, and for others, maybe not so much! But no matter how you feel, there is no time like the present to clean it out and minimize it!
I have approached the minimalist life mentality to my closet. And now, I have applied it to my kitchen as well. I like maintaining a minimalist kitchen for two reasons. One, it allows me to think, move around and prepare meals with a clearer head. And two, the space is more aesthetically pleasing to be in!
Minimalist Kitchen Essentials
Before I even go into the products I believe are essential for a minimalist kitchen, I encourage you to Marie Kondo your kitchen cabinets and drawers first. In other words, take everything out of them and set the items on the counter. Wipe and clean out your cabinets and drawers and then decide from there what you want to keep, get rid of and need to get in order to maintain a minimalist kitchen.
Besides reducing your kitchen items to the essentials, I think a minimalist kitchen also means keeping your counter space clear (that aesthetic I mentioned!). As much as you can, store items in cabinets and drawers when you are not using them. I love just having flowers, a fruit bowl, a candle and maybe some cutting boards out on display!
Just like our closets, everyone’s idea of a minimalist kitchen might look different. I am simply sharing with you what mine looks like as someone who loves to cook and bake but does not necessarily wear a chef’s hat! Within each category, items can be expanded upon, or minimized. You may find some items may not even be necessary. For instance, f you absolutely do not bake, then a standing mixer may not be necessary. While other items you might want to add! For instance, as I find myself making more soups, I want to buy an immersion blender!
I primarily focus on cooking essentials in this post. For some of my favorite serving and entertaining pieces, head here.
Click on pictures to be directly taken to product and pricing information
A good cookware set takes you far in the kitchen! Having a few different size fry pans, sauce pans and a stockpot for pasta covers all of your basic stovetop cooking needs. Professionals chefs lean towards stainless steal and cast iron cookware but there is a slight learning curve to prevent food from sticking when using these! For simplicity sake, I personally still lean towards a non-stick set for everyday cooking.
Cast Iron Skillet
My cookware set might be non-stick but I do love having a cast iron skillet in my kitchen. I use mine weekly. It is great for german pancakes and frittatas but cast-iron skillets can also be used for sautéing, pan-frying, searing, baking, braising, and roasting. As mentioned above, cooking with cast iron requires a slight learning curve for proper use. Here are the do’s and don’ts for using one.
Another cast iron piece I love use is a dutch oven. Perfect for simmering soups, stews and stovetop potpourri this is my favorite piece to use in the kitchen! Because they are offered in so many colors, this is one of those items I also love displaying on my stove at all times! The likes of Le Creuset and Staub are definitely an investment piece but if cared for and used properly, they will last a lifetime!
In the winter and on busy nights, my slow cooker is a life saver! This particular slow cooker has a “keep warm” feature which gives you even more freedom for having a hot meal ready at your convenience! This slow cooker also double duties as a braiser, steamer and rice cooker!
I hate chopping veggies and herbs! A food processor is ideal for chopping and blending but is also an essential workhorse for slicing and shredding too. The more vegetarian meals I prepare, the more essential this kitchen tool has become in our household.
A few prep cutting boards are necessary. I like having at least two-one for vegetables and one for meats. In addition, wood cutting boards are nice for using and displaying veggies and cheese!
I am not good with knives. I just use one or two for chopping, one for spreading and one for slicing bread. Rob and Madeline love grapefruit so we have a “specialty” knife for that. In my opinion, Cutco makes the best knives. They have a “forever” guarantee and will last in your kitchen for a life time!
Ladling, flipping, stirring, whisking. I like this set below with an additional need of a whisk and spatula. I also like having some wooden spoons on hand as well!
Did I really need that garlic press? Probably not because I buy the minced garlic in the jar. These are the kinds of questions I asked myself when cleaning out my kitchen gadget drawer! After I asked myself these questions, I found myself left with a spoon rest, pizza cutter, ice cream scooper, rolling pin, kitchen sheers, lemon zester, veggie peeler, cheese slicer, oil brush, salt mill, olive oil dispenser and can opener!
Because I love to bake, my baking sheet collection runs deep but for anyone that sticks to cooking, a few jelly roll baking sheets seem sufficient!
Set of Mixing Bowls
I have had these for 20 years! Yes, 20! Best set of bowls you can possibly buy! The rubber grip on the bottom is key!
Measuring Cups and Spoons
I use one set of measuring cups for dry ingredients and one set for wet ingredients. You also need a set of measuring spoons! I like them separated buy measurement versus all of them on a ring fob!
As a baker, I cannot live without this. It just makes the job so much easier for batter, doughs and for whipping up egg whites! This old girl will be getting plenty of use under quarantine!
Kitchen Towels and Mitts
No set of kitchen towels are the same I have quickly come to learn over the years! I only use the super absorbent ones from William Sonoma. As for oven kitchen mitts, I again turn to Williams Sonoma. I use one set of oven mitts and one set of pot holders!
Once you are ready to get back into the kitchen and cook, don’t forget to find my meal plans here:
Thanks for stopping by!