10 Kitchen Essentials for the Home Chef

Since I got married, I’ve been asking Santa for things for our home. Specifically, for the kitchen.

I tend to think that a lot of kitchen gadgets on the market are pretty silly or so task-specific that unless you eat corn on the cob every day (not us) or are regularly pitting cherries (also not us) they don’t justify the amount of space they take up.

When we first moved into our apartment, I took my less-is-more approach a bit too far. Juan still reminds me of this every time we use the ladle he saved from the Goodwill pile.

That said, I’ve been pretty picky about what I let into our home. I try to only own quality items that I will actually use and will make my life and cooking experience better.

Here are 10 kitchen essentials that made the cut. Maybe you will add them to your Christmas list this year or tuck them under the tree for the home chef in your life.

10 Kitchen Essentials for the Home Chef


Lodge 6-Quart Dutch Oven (Comes in multiple colors, currently on sale starting at $49.97)

This dutch oven is heavy, works well on the stovetop or in the oven and is a budget-friendly $200-less than its Le Creuset cousin. Plus it’s pretty, which makes me happy.

Lodge Pre-Seasoned Combo Cooker (Currently on sale for $29.99)

2 years ago we tossed out our old flaking non-stick pans in favor of this cast iron set we received for Christmas. Since then, they have been the only pans we use and I love them.

Lodge Cast-Iron Grill/Griddle (Currently on sale for $38.97)

You may have noticed a theme…We really like Lodge products. This one is especially cool and space-saving because it is both a stovetop grill and a griddle. Pancakes? Burgers? Just flip to the side you want.


Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat (Currently on sale for $22.99)

So far we have used our Silpat for baking cookies, roasting veggies, baking fish and as a prep surface for sticky pizza dough. It turns your cookie sheet into a nonstick surface, takes the place of parchment paper, protects your baking sheet from stuck-on food and is basically just wonderful. We now own 2.

Ironwood Gourmet Acacia Wood Large End Grain Prep Station ($77.98)

If I could only have one cutting board, this would be it. It’s large enough that I can do all my prep work in one space. It also doubles as a beautiful board for cheese & charcuterie when we are having parties. (Which makes me feel all grown up and fancy-like).

Cuisinart SmartStick Immersion Hand Blender (Comes in multiple colors, on sale for $34.32)

We use our immersion blender for blending soups right in the pot and making smoothies. I’ve even used it to grind almonds into almond flour. It’s powerful & super-easy to clean, which is what I look for in a blender. I’ve considered getting a larger blender, but this has met all of our blending needs so far so I can’t really decide why we might need one.

Microplane Classic Zester/Grater ($17.00)

This zester/grater is perfect for grating fresh parmesan cheese (so much more flavor than the pre-grated kind!) and zesting citrus fruits. That’s about all I can say. It works really well.

Vacu Vin  (Currently on sale for $9.70)

This little gadget helps to reseal your opened bottle of wine and keep it fresh. It’s perfect for when you just want a glass, not the whole bottle. Which in most situations is a good idea.

Wusthof Classic Ikon 7-Inch Santoku Knife (Currently on sale for $99.95)

We received 2 of these knives as wedding presents. They are my constant go-to knives for chopping, slicing and dicing just about anything. They are sharp (good for a knife), sturdy and the fit feels perfect for me.


Victorinox Swiss Army 8-Inch Fibrox Straight Edge Chef’s Knife (Currently on sale for $24.95)

We also received this knife as a gift and use it almost as often as the other two I listed above. The handle is a little larger, which works great for Juan but feels a little large for me (which is why I usually go for the others). I was actually surprised to see what a great value it is when I was looking it up for this list. For the quality, I was expecting a higher price tag.



These are my top 10 kitchen essentials. Later this week I’ll be putting together and sharing my own kitchen Christmas wish list. Are there any items you think I should have on it? Let me know in the comments! 


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One thought on “10 Kitchen Essentials for the Home Chef

  1. I love that list! A few of those items are already on my Christmas wish list :) The Immersion blender & Dutch Oven are two kitchen tools I use ALL the time.

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