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Kitchenware: Types, Uses, and Shopping Tips

Kitchenware in all its variety is an essential part of making a household feel like home. A convenient umbrella term for the cookware, bakeware, utensils and tools we rely on for preparing, cooking, and serving food, kitchenware is an expansive category that also includes countertop storage containers, cleaning supplies and outdoor barbecue grills. With so many different types of kitchenware available, it can be overwhelming to decide which specific pots, pans, appliances and accessories are right for your small apartment or big family home. Here are a few tips to keep in mind while you shop for kitchenware.

Types of Kitchenware

A well-stocked kitchen is filled with a reliable collection of useful gadgets and tools, each with its own unique features and special functions. Some of the most common types of kitchenware include:

  • Pots and pans
  • Bakeware
  • Knives
  • Cutting boards
  • Utensils

Pots and pans come in a variety of sizes and are crafted with materials such as stainless steel, cast iron and carbon steel, with many featuring nonstick coatings. Bakeware includes items such as baking sheets, cake pans, and muffin tins for a variety of sweet treats as well as square and rectangular bakers, large casseroles and petite ramekins. Knives and cutting boards are used for prepping the ingredients for all your cooking and baking recipes. Utensils such as spoons, spatulas, whisks, turners and tongs are daily necessities for stirring, flipping, and serving food.

The uses of kitchenware will vary depending on the type of item. Pots and pans are used for cooking a variety of dishes such as soups, stews, pastas, appetizers and entrees. Bakeware is used for baking sweet desserts such as cakes, cookies or pies in addition to one-pot casserole dinners and finger foods. Knives and cutting boards are a perfect team to use for chopping, slicing, and dicing ingredients like vegetables and meats for all your cooking and baking recipes. Utensils are the kitchen tools you'll reach for to stir sauces, flip pancakes and serve portions of your latest baked recipe to friends and family.

Considerations When Shopping for Kitchenware

When shopping for kitchenware, there are several factors to keep in mind. First, consider what type of cooking you'll be doing most often in your home and the types of dishes you'll be preparing. This will naturally guide you to the specific types of pots and pans, bakeware, and utensils that will be most useful. Second, consider the material and quality of the kitchenware. Stainless steel and cast iron are durable and long-lasting materials for pots and pans, while silicone utensils are heat-resistant and won't scratch delicate nonstick surfaces. Third, make sure the kitchenware you're considering will fit into your available storage space. Large pots and pans may be necessary for cooking family meals, but they will also take up a lot of space in storage. Do you have cabinets large enough to store all your cookware? If not, perhaps a selection of small or medium-sized cookware is the smarter choice - it's just as durable but won't take up as much valuable real estate.

Because it's such an important investment for any household, it's crucial to consider your daily routines when shopping for kitchenware. Once you've determined your specific needs - for both everyday cooking and entertaining - and considered your preferences, you'll be ready to make informed decisions about the best kitchenware for your home.