Do you ever watch cooking shows and find yourself not only salivating over the food but also admiring the tools used to create it? After all, what is a chef without their tools? A well-stocked kitchen is a happy one, and elevating your kitchen to a professional level does not have to be an expensive undertaking. Spicing up your kitchen doesn't necessarily mean buying the fanciest equipment because you really only need reliable and practical tools that enhance the abilities that you already have.
From coffee and tea equipment to basics such as mixing bowls, the best way to set yourself up for success in the kitchen is to have the right tools on hand for the job. Thankfully, many of these tools are on the cheaper side and play double-duty. Quarter-size baking sheets might seem like a frivolous purchase when you already have a full-size pan, but let me tell you, these baking sheets are a breeze to clean and are perfect for small portions.
I have every single one of these items in my kitchen, discovered while cooking professionally throughout the years in positions ranging from barista to baker. This list of 10 kitchen products under $25 will demonstrate that it only takes simple elements to upgrade any kitchen.
10 Kitchen Products Under $25
I brew coffee in my french press every day because it feels simultaneously rustic and scientific. I prefer making coffee this way because it's quicker and more satisfying than sitting in a congested Starbucks drive-thru.
An electric tea kettle is the perfect companion to any kitchen, especially if you have a french press! I love the ability to boil water without a stove. It's convenient, and you can use it in many situations, including making RAMEN!
A staple in most professional kitchens, this set of stainless steel mixing bowls makes me feel sophisticated when I use them even if I'm just scrambling a few eggs. I live my full Food Network fantasy when I hear the sound of my whisk hitting these bowls.
Experienced home cooks know that mise en place is very important, even outside of the professional cooking realm, and these little glass bowls are lifesavers. Trying to poach eggs for the first time? Crack 'em in these bad boys before dropping them in the water. Want to feel fancy eating french fries? Use these to hold your dipping sauce!
I became tired of those cheap baking sheets that warp and stain after the first use, so I bought these quarter baking sheets. These are industry standard and will simplify your cooking life tremendously. Study and reliable, these baking sheets will last for a very long time.
Pureeing large batches of food can be messy and inconvenient when you have to move food from one container to the blender, and back to another container. That's where your awesome handheld immersion blender comes in handy because it goes directly into your soup, salsa, baby food, etc., and makes it silky smooth. That's why this amazing little blender earns a place on our list of kitchen products under $25.
Regular food processors are bulky and can take up a lot of valuable, precious countertop space. I love this tiny electric chopper because it does what a full-sized food processor does while taking up a quarter of the room.
Using a kitchen scale enables you to make precise measurements in your recipes, which can vary wildly. Instead of worrying about heaping tablespoons and scant cups, I became friends with the metric system, a trick I also learned when working in kitchens. While I haven't tossed my measuring cups, my cooking greatly improved after I started weighing my ingredients.
I was taught that if you wanted to know if meat was done, you twisted around a fork in it and performed a visual inspection. Because this method can lead to some pretty overcooked food, accuracy is the name of my game. On a professional level, a lot of prepared food is temperature checked, partly due to safety reasons, but also because it is more exact than guessing. This thermometer also serves as a candy thermometer and registers temps up to 400°F, so you can use it for hot oil as well.
This item isn't industry-related, but I included it in this list because I think it's really cute, and I love to decompress with a nice hot cup of tea. While shopping at my local asian grocery store, I saw this adorable teapot WITH a strainer inside and simply had to buy it. Plus, it feels luxurious to pour yourself tea straight from a little pot. That's what I call a win-win situation.
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