Welcome to the Beginner’s Guide series, where we’ll give you tips and tricks to navigate cooking on your own, even if you have zero experience. From meal prep, to grocery lists, or buying organic produce, we've got you covered with the basic tools to get you feeling confident in the kitchen. Check back every Monday for more helpful tips!
No matter how often you cook, or what size your kitchen is, there are a few items that should always be stocked in your kitchen. Whether you plan on meal prepping each week, or just need the bare essentials as a last minute resort, we’ve got you covered. Read on for our five favorite kitchen essentials.
A Good Knife
The one item every home cook needs is a good knife. This will make or break your chopping capabilities, save you time, and help avoid any safety hazards. A dull knife can easily lead to an injury. This Kyocera ceramic knife is a great everyday knife that is perfect for chopping fruits, vegetables and meats. The ceramic blade retains it sharpness up to 10 times longer than steel blades. It’s easy to clean and lightweight, plus it comes in lots of fun colors.
A Cutting Board
A sturdy cutting board is essential for all of your cooking needs. While plastic cutting boards are often easier to clean (you can throw them in the dishwasher) they can get damaged easily from chopping and aren’t as sanitary. The two best options are a bamboo cutting board or a wood cutting board. Bamboo cutting boards are the most sustainable option, but the only downside is that because their surface is so hard, it can dull your knives over time. A wood cutting board is eco-friendly, durable and will last for years.
A Set of Non-Toxic and Nonstick Pans
You might not know it, but most nonstick cookware is made using certain substances like perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) that release a carcinogenic chemical when heated. When buying nonstick and non-toxic cookware, make sure to avoid anything that contains aluminum and Teflon. GreenPan makes a set of non-stick cookware that does not contain any harmful substances like lead, cadmium, PFAS or PFOA.
A Food Processor
A food processor is ideal for slicing, chopping and shredding things quickly. It's best for pureeing soups, making dips and sauces, or making DIY veggie rice like cauliflower rice and broccoli rice.
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While there are certain things a food processor and a blender can do simultaneously, they both have separate functions. A blender is necessary if you want to make a smoothie, homemade nut milk, or make a margarita! If you are looking for a compact blender to make single-serve smoothies and soups, then consider the Nutribullet your new best friend. For a larger, more high-powered blender, spring for a Vitamix.
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