Want to create a minimalist kitchen? Here’s a list of our essential kitchen tools that we use daily, plus a few decluttering tips!
A big part of this blog is sharing our minimalism journey — how and what we declutter, things have have made our lives simpler, and tricks or habits we’ve picked up along the way.
I recently decluttered our kitchen drawers (and cleaned all of the crumbs and splatters — hallelujah) and thought I’d share my favorite essential kitchen tools, and what we ended up getting rid of!
We are fortunate to have a generous amount of storage space in our kitchen. But the downside is that we have more room for kitchen clutter to collect. I also do a fair amount of recipe development, food photography and editorial content for various clients and have accumulated extra pans and props because of my work — #foodbloggerproblems for reals.
As I went through each drawer, I made a list of our absolute must-have tools.
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Our Essential Kitchen Tools
- Aluminum baking sheets — get the biggest one that’ll fit in your oven
- Food processor & dicer
- Citrus reamer
- Garlic press
- Silicone spatulas
- Wooden spoons
- Turning spatulas
- Metal whisks
- Box grater
- Can opener
- Hinged wine + bottle opener
- Vegetable Peeler
- Large cutting board, plus a few smaller Epicurean ones
- Silicone ice cube trays for freezing toddler-portioned leftovers
- Vegetable brush
- 5” Santoku knife that I use 90 percent of the time
- Instant Pot
- Cast iron skillets: a 10-inch and 12-inch
- Dutch oven
- Chainmail scrubber — the best for cleaning cast iron
- Basic pots and pans — 1 large soup pot, three saucepans, four skillets
- Bakeware — 9×9” and 9×13” baking pans, 12-cup muffin pan, 4 mini loaf pans, 2 standard loaf pans
- Steamer basket
- Cookie scoop — used most frequently for fritters, meatballs, cookies and a small scoop of ice cream
- Measuring spoons & cups — measuring spoons that actually fit inside spice jars might just change your life
A few fringe items I could live without but still use a fair amount are my ginger grater (I guess I could use my microplane though?) and an immersion blender for when I don’t need a super smooth puree and don’t feel like pulling out my beast of a blender.
What I Got Rid Of
Most of what we got rid of were duplicates, things I rarely use, mysterious parts I couldn’t place, and gadgets that just seemed ridiculous. I’m looking at you avocado slicer!
- Extra whisk
- Handheld grater — I nearly lost a knuckle using this thing so I’m happy to see it go
- Extra oven mitts — You guys. I had TEN. Last time I checked my husband and I had four hands between the two of us. We now have six (two have personal meaning but are on the thin side) and even that feels excessive!
- Avocado slicer
- Extra cutting boards
- Old dying slow cooker — the Instant Pot does it all!
- Mesh tea strainer — we now use our French press
- Stainless steel Rubaway
- Cut gloves
- Extra can opener
- Extra peeler
- Rubber mason jar top for drinking
- Extra measuring cups
- Rice paddles
While decluttering our kitchen drawers, I moved lesser used tools to drawers a bit farther away from the ones I’m in-and-out of several times a day. Even a small bit of extra space in these drawers makes a big difference in helping keep them organized and tidy.
And while I was at it, I wiped down the inside of all of the drawers as I went through them. Let me tell you, it feels so good not having to look at crumbs and splatters every time I go to grab something.
Tips for Decluttering Kitchen Tools
I still have a couple of drawers to go through but starting with our most used drawers has made a huge difference. Here are some tips to help you declutter your kitchen tools
Start with one or two of your most frequently used drawer(s).
All you need is 10-15 minutes. Tackle the others as you have time.
Toss or donate:
- Things you don’t use or love
- Multiples of anything
- Broken tools
- Miscellaneous parts and pieces you can’t place
- Single-purpose gadgets that another tool can do the
Group your most frequently used tools into one or two easily accessible drawers, and move lesser used items out of the way.
Wipe down the insides of the drawers as you shuffle things around.
For those fringe items —because I know we all have them— ask yourself these three questions to help you decide:
- Is there another tool that can do the same job?
- Does it save a lot of time or make cooking a lot easier?
- Is it used often enough to justify keeping it? Or is it something you can borrow from a friend or neighbor?
Have 10-15 minutes to spare this weekend? Declutter one or two of your most used drawers.
It’s amazing what taking out a few unused or unnecessary items will do, and I guarantee those drawers will spark joy the next time (or next several times!) you open them.
If you’re on Instagram, we wanna see your most coveted kitchen tools, and what you’re unloading! Tag us @modernminimalism and hashtag #modernminimalism.
See ya there!