Eating homemade food consistently is a great step toward a healthy lifestyle, but cooking from scratch can be challenging and time-consuming. Set yourself up for success with an efficient, organized kitchen. These 10 items are essentials that should be stored within the kitchen work triangle for easy access.
It takes work to consistently make homemade food for my family, so efficiency is a must for me. I don’t have a lot of time for long, complicated recipes, and I don’t like walking back and forth across my kitchen every time I need something. To streamline the cooking process, I always make sure to have the essentials close at hand.
In my L-shaped kitchen, the refrigerator and stove are on one wall, and the sink is on the adjacent wall. Most of the time I spend in the kitchen, I’m standing somewhere in the zone between the refrigerator and the sink.
This is my kitchen work triangle. It’s the main hub of food prep activity, so it has to be home to the essential tools I use regularly. It’s not the right place for donut pans, snow cone machines, or crepe skillets. If I use something less frequently than once a week, it can go in a cabinet that’s on the outskirts. This prime real estate needs to focus on the workhorse items that keep homemade food on my table.
Best Products for Kitchen Work Triangle
There are 10 items that every kitchen, big or small, should have within the work triangle. Strategic storage of these products will minimize the time spent on food prep. Set your kitchen up for success by stocking it with these key cooking tools.
Cutting Boards and Knives
Cutting boards and good quality knives are important for efficient food prep. I love this medium-sized bamboo cutting board for chopping my family’s daily vegetable quota. The size is big enough to keep everything on the board while you’re chopping, and it’s pretty enough to use as a cheese platter if you’re entertaining. This sharp, sturdy chef’s knife is great for all kinds of chopping.
Pots and Dutch Ovens
High quality pots and pans are another essential for dinner prep. I like to keep multiple sizes in a cabinet right next to my stove. This steamer pot does double duty. You can steam vegetables using both pots together, or remove the top portion for regular cooking and boiling.
A Dutch oven is one of the most versatile pieces in the kitchen. It can be used on the stove or in the oven, making everything from soup to a roast to a loaf of crusty homemade bread. You can even bake lasagna or brownies in a Dutch oven.
Pot Holders, Measuring Cups & Spoons
In order to cook with confidence, you need a good supply of measuring cups and measuring spoons. This is especially important with baking, where exact measurements can make or break a recipe. And to get everything in and out of the oven safely, thick pot holders will keep burns at bay.
If you’re working with a small kitchen, this set of glass nesting bowls is a must. The smaller bowls are great for food prep, and you can use the larger ones for serving. They store compactly, taking up very little cabinet space in the work triangle.
Mixing Bowls and Wooden Spoons
No kitchen is complete without a steady supply of freshly baked cookies. When I was starting out in my own kitchen, the first recipe I mastered was chocolate chip cookies. Even when I messed up, they still tasted great. Cookie sheets can be stored outside the work triangle if space is tight, but mixing bowls and wooden spoons are essential in this heart of the kitchen. You’ll want a nice, big mixing bowl so that no matter what you’re making, there’s plenty of room to stir.
Fill your prime kitchen work space with these 10 essential products and keep yourself sane while cooking!
What are your favorite tools to keep close at hand in the kitchen? Please share them in the comments!