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My Kitchen Essentials List

Boris Johnson

My Kitchen Essentials List

A master list of my most-used, tried and true kitchen essentials: from pots and pans to knives, appliances, and must-have tools, this is a comprehensive list of products I use on a regular basis.

Kath stirring a pot of oatmeal on the stove.

I thought it would be useful to create a well-loved kitchen essentials list! 

With a focus on minimalism (a cluttered kitchen is my worst nightmare!), these are my favorite cooking tools that I use nearly everyday.

There is a wide range of prices included in this list

From gadgets that you can find on sale to appliances, like a Vitamix, that are quite pricey. I’d rather have something that I love like a Vitamix last me 10 years (it has!) than a dozen cheaper ones turnover in that time.

These are the things I use EVERY DAY.

We obviously have more items in our kitchen than listed below, but these these are my essentials

As you know I’m all about a tidy home, I definitely find myself drawn to appliances and cookware that can multi-task. Rather then having a cupboard (or three!) exploding with miscellaneous pans specific for one purpose, I’m all about products that can do it all – like the Always Pan. 

Let’s dive into the cabinets… here are the KERF kitchen essentials!

Open kitchen cupboards with white stacks of white plates and bowls.

My Kitchen Essentials List: 

Pots and Pans

Our Place The Always Pan – this is my newest pan and I am obsessed! The inside is lined with a nontoxic ceramic coating, and you can do anything inside: braise, sear, steam, strain, saute, fry, boil, serve. It comes with a handy steamer basket too. Note this pan was gifted to me.

All-Clad 12″ Skillet – this has been our go-to, everyday main cooking skillet for a long time, but the Always Pan is taking the top spot these days! The All Clad skillet is large, wide and heavy so I use it for cooking big dishes – like 4 big pieces of salmon or chicken. 

Calphalon 3.5-Quart Pot – this saucepan is the perfect size – not to big, not too small. I use it for oatmeal, spaghetti sauce, and small dishes (like cranbrerry sauce).

Le Crueset 12” Skillet – this large, flat skillet is great for pancakes and quesadillas (which I make everyday!) because it has low flat sides. 

Calphalon 8 quart Stock Pot – my go-to for large soups, sauteing a ton of kale, or boiling pasta.

Hand holding set of black measuring cups.

Kitchen Tools

Salad Spinner – of course you could wash and dry kale by hand, but why would you!? A salad spinner is a must have.

OXO Garlic Press – mince 3 cloves at once. Love this thing. 

OXO Peeler – I’ve used some rickety peelers in my time, but this one is strong and smooth. I prefer a Y peeler myself.

Spoonulas – great for scraping sides and scooping all in one. 

Wooden Spoons – we have a variety of wooden and silicone utensils

OXO Microplane – ideal for grating garlic for dressings, zesting lemon, grating nutmeg, and squeezing lemon juice to catch the seeds

Box Grater – go-to for cheese

OXO Pizza Cutter – we use this daily for quesadillas and weekly for homemade pizza night

OXO Rubber Bottom Mixing Bowls – these are my favorites because you can rough them up and they won’t break. I love that there are just three sizes: small, medium, and large. I use these every day for salad making to pancake batter. 

Medium Colander – a like a small one for washing berries

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Large Metal Colander – and a big one for pasta or potatoes (bonus if they stack for storage!)

Glass Stacking Bowls – I use these as meal prep bowls and love the variety of sizes. Small bowls for a sauce and big ones for chopped veggies to keep the cutting board clear. These also make a great Hugh Jass salad eating bowl!


Vitamix – mine was gifted to me by Vitamix in 2009 and is still looking as new as it did the day it arrived. If it were to break I would 100% replace it.

Cuisinart Coffee Maker – I love this coffeemaker because it doesn’t have a glass carafe! You press a button to dispense the coffee. (I have shattered one too many carafes!)

Breville Electric Kettle – we use this daily in the winter for tea! It’s really fast compared to the stovetop or microwave. 

Rice Cooker – I love any appliance you can set and forget, and we make nearly all of our grains in this one, from quinoa to oatmeal. 

Breville Toaster Oven – we use this daily for toast or baking small things like an individual pizza for Mazen. I’ll never go back to a pop-up toaster because you can do so many things in this kind!

Breville Microwave – I love our microwave because it has a turn wheel to add time – so much faster than pushing buttons! 

Slow Cooker – while I do not use my slow cooker daily, it’s on the list because there is nothing like it. When I do use it, I love it!!


Sheet Pans – we have both small and large ones for different needs. 

Small and Large Casserole Dishes – multi-use for both prep work and baking. 

Pizza Stone – we love our stone for pizza making, so if you’re a pizza-loving family, this is a must-have. 


We have several other knives, but these are my favorites. 

Shun Ultimate Serrated Utility Knife – this is my favorite knife in our kitchen. The serration is great for cutting small fruits and veggies, like red peppers and pears, and it small size is great for my hand. 

Shun Classic Chef’s Knife – but of course you gotta have a classic chef’s knife for all the big things! And the chopping.

Wusthof Bread Knife – this bad boy is SUPER sharp and great for crusty bread or watermelon. 

Kitchen Shears – gotta have these for opening things and snipping herbs

Wood Cutting Boards – ours were handmade by Thomas’s brother!

Hands holding set of gold scissors over open kitchen drawer.


Mesh Utensil Dividers – for all your home neat home needs! I like the metal ones because they look nicer than plastic and don’t break or splinter like wood.

Glass Tupperware Containers – we use these all day, everyday for our leftovers. 

Lazy Susans – a must have for an organized!

Honorable Mention

These are additional items we have that don’t make the “essentials list” because we don’t use them as often:

The Clickable Gallery

Kath in kitchen opening drawer of kitchen tools.

What are your most used, essential kitchen tools?

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