Food & Wine

10 Essential Cooking Tools Every Amateur Chef Needs

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Looking for a way to take your cooking skills to the next level? Here are ten must-have cooking tools every budding chef should have in their kitchen.

Some individuals have a natural talent for making delicious meals and unique dishes. Being a chef and making people happy with food just suites them. But along with the skill you also need the right materials to create cuisine like a true pro. 

Keep reading if you’re looking for a way to advance in your cooking practice and take your skill to the next level. Check out these 10 essential cooking tools every amateur chef needs in their kitchen. 

Pots & Pans

You won’t be able to accomplish much without these cooking tools. You probably already have some ready to go but if you want to get a little fancy there are certain types that you might want to invest in.

Stockpot- These come in a variety of sizes but are usually identified by their height (tall) and depth. Stockpots are typically used for cooking things such as stews, stock (of course) and broth. You can also cook for large amounts of people.

Skillet/Frypan- If you plan on frying anything you’ll need one of these. Skillets are basic essential and come in multiple sizes. They are designed for cooking oils over high heat. For a more advanced type of frypan, try purchasing a cast iron skillet, which is heavier due to the material. 

Saucepan- The saucepan often looks more like a pot and is a very versatile tool. These are ideal for anything from making rice to boiling eggs. 

Check out reviews to find the best cookware sets for you.

Knife Set

Kitchens can be dangerous places and one of the reasons why is because they’re filled with this utensil. Having a good set of knives in your arsenal of cooking tools is very important to not only preparing the dish but saving time as well.

If your knives are dull they don’t tend to cut as quickly or smoothly. You’ll also need different sizes and sharpness with each dish you make. Know which knives work best for the things you cook the most but try to at least have a large chef knife and a small paring knife handy. 

Consider purchasing an entire set, which usually comes with chef shears and a holder.

Cutting Board

No one likes to get their prepping stations too messy (of course you can’t always avoid this). Nor do you want to ruin counters or tables which knicks and cuts. That’s why a cutting board should be on your kitchen tool list. 

Some of the most common and popular materials of cutting boards are wood and plastic. Shop around to see which you prefer. You could also buy both and use them for certain foods.

Measuring Cups

Sometimes when you have a natural knack for cooking you tend to add spices and seasons by eye and can taste-test your way through. However, if you want to level up to master chef it would be a good practice to start measuring out your additions and portions.

Measuring cups are very affordable and come in different materials, including plastic and metal. You’ll also probably need a set of measuring spoons and a cup for liquids which usually made out of pyrex glass. Having a color-coded set could be more helpful and fun. 


Whisks are one of those cooking tools that people don’t realize they actually need until they get around to making something that calls for it. Make sure you have one of these convenient little devices on hand for whipping things like eggs and cake batter. 

You can find them in plastic or wire material mostly. Both of these materials are fine to use and depend on your preference. 

Spatula, Spoons & Tongs

You’ll more than likely use at least one of these when cooking any meal. Having a set of various size spoons, tongs and spatulas help you handle the food during the actual cooking time. 

Although different sizes work, you may want to start off with versions of these utensils that are longer and larger so that you don’t have to stand too close to the pans. You can usually find a cool basket or special holder to keep them all together and out of the way once you clean. 

Mixing Bowls 

Mixing bowls are helpful for the prep period. They are essential for when you’re working with multiple ingredients that may need to be prepared before mixing. For instance, melting the butter before adding it to a batter or sauce. 

You can probably find some affordable ones in plastic or glass with lids for easy storage. 

Potholders & Towels

There will be messes and there will be fire. For both of these reasons, you should keep towels and potholders by your side at all times to avoid safety hazards. The towels will also come in hand for when its time to dry the dishes. 

You might also want to try cooking mittens for an easier grip when you are moving hot pots and pans.


If you’re forgetful and don’t have a built-in clock on your stove then getting a timer is essential. This kitchen necessity will assist you with making sure your food comes out just right and no burning incidents take place. It’ll also help you keep track of how long you cook something for future recipe purposes.

Veggie Peeler

Vegetables are delicious but can often be a pain to cook because you need to remove the skin most of the time. Well adding a veggie peeler to your cooking tools list will cut down lots of time on this. 

Vegetable peelers are a little more convenient than using graters and come in handheld sizes.

Ready to Put Together Your Essential Cooking Tools Kit?

Creating meals that make people happy is a special talent. You can continue to elevate your skills by making sure you have these basic cooking tools in your kitchen. 

For more discussions and tips on cooking and dining, check out the lifestyle sections of our blog.

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