Essential Tools for the Real Food Kitchen
I consider a well-equipped kitchen to be crucial to streamlining real food preparation. If I gave you a sneak peek into my kitchen, you would find these tools well used. Whether you are a seasoned real food cook or just starting out, you’ll want to look into adding some of these in your own kitchen.
Sometimes you can find awesome kitchen tools at yard sales, on Craigslist, thrift stores, or outlets. I find that Amazon has really great prices on things. I like to make a wish-list and that way people know what to get me!
A good knife – A must-have for any kitchen! There is mucho chopping happening on a daily basis and you don’t want to waste your time with a crappy knife.
Dehydrator – This is what I use to dry out soaked grains, nuts, and fruit. It can also make yogurt for me! I love being able to dry out foods at low temps so that I don’t destroy the enzymes in the food. It makes sprouting grains so much easier!
Blendtec or Vitamix- I’ve owned my Blendtec blender since 2008 and use it pretty much every day. From smoothies to grinding grains, it does a great job and I never have to worry about things not being blended properly. It’s worth every penny because before 2008 I burned through a blender a year!
Grain Mill – If you don’t have a high speed blender to grind your grains, you will need a grain mill. This is a really good, powerful brand that can withstand the pressure of daily use.
Sprouting Lids – So many uses for these little guys! I use them to sprout grains and to drain water kefir! They’re perfect for straining out liquid and keeping grains in the jar!
Canning Jars – I have a tons of these and always seem to need more. They are a regular purchase! I use them for canning, sprouting, fermenting, making yogurt, water kefir, sourdough starter, storing herbs, drinking from, and a myriad of other uses. I use many sizes from pint all the way to pint-and-a-half (love these!!), quart, and half gallon.
Large Stock Pot – Making bone broth is the foundation of traditional cooking and to make large amounts at once you’ll need a stock pot. I love mine! It’s ceramic over stainless steel and cooks things beautifully!
Cast Iron Skillet or this one (it’s cheaper!) – I can make perfect fried eggs in my cast iron skillet without ever worrying that they will stick. It is also wonderful for skillet pancakes that go from the stovetop to the oven.
Soft Cooler – I use one of these for making yogurt. It works perfectly every time! It’s also great for picnics and beach days. We like pack our lunch rather than buy.
Crock pot – Any busy mom knows that a crock pot is her best friend. I have two because I often have applesauce or bone broth going in one and dinner in the other! I have a VitaClay on my Christmas wish-list!
French Press – You need two of these if there is a coffee drinker in your house. One is designated for coffee and the other for herbal tea. I make my own tea blends and love the convenience of brewing infusions in the French Press and easily straining them. It just makes things quicker and easier than straining from a jar. Little tricks I learned from working at the little coffee place.
Food Processor – If you are going to be making a lot of coconut butter or nut butters you’ll need a food processor. Even the high powered blenders can’t seem to get the butter quite creamy enough for me. They need the bigger space that a food processor provides.
Ice Cream Maker – Homemade ice cream is healthy and delicious. Made with raw or coconut cream, honey and other healthy ingredients it can be an everyday treat!
KitchenAid Stand Mixer – Not only do I use this for making whipped cream and butter, I also use it to make whipped body butters and other organic body products. It is so much easier to let it mix automatically, especially for body butters that can take over 20 minutes to whip!
I’ve acquired my essentials over the last 15 years so don’t feel like you need to get everything at once. Think about what you need the most and go from there!
What tools do you deem as essential in your kitchen?
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Sarah is a wife, mom of 4, farm owner, and real food blogger at Real Food Outlaws. She is also an Master Herbalist and owns 90210 Organics, an Eco-boutique and Apothecary. She holds a Master’s Degree in Applied Clinical Nutrition from New York Chiropractic College and is a Clinical/Functional Nutritionist and Advanced Nutrition Response Testing™ Practitioner at Natural Health Improvement Center of South Jersey and Natural Health Improvement Center of Des Moines. You can often find her barefoot in the garden (or kitchen), or rummaging through a refrigerator (not necessarily her own).