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Back-to-Basics Kitchen Tools Every Minimalist Cook Needs

Too many kitchen gadgets? These are the basic tools you really need.

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various kitchen utensils on wooden tableMaraZe / Shutterstock

Walk into any kitchen store and you’re guaranteed to find an assortment of gear, gadgets and gizmos guaranteed to make cooking easier. However, these tools are often more of a hassle than they are helpful. That’s why we went back to the basics and found the must-have kitchen tools every home chef needs. Each product has multiple uses and is designed to last for a long time. Here are our top picks. Once you’ve organized your kitchen drawer, try these smart tips from tidying-up expert Marie Kondo.

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Cast Iron Skilletvia amazon.com

Cast-Iron Skillet


If you’re going to own one piece of cookware, make it a cast-iron skillet. When properly cared for, cast iron can last for a lifetime. Plus, it’s the perfect vessel for sautéing vegetables, grilling meats, baking rustic pies and more.

Buy a Lodge cast-iron skillet here.

Learn how to season a cast-iron skillet.

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wooden spatula setvia amazon.com

Spatula Set


If you’re sick of replacing your plastic hamburger flipper, reach for one of these wooden spatulas, instead. Designed with a lifetime warranty, these handmade pieces are up for almost any task, including tossing stir fries, scrambling eggs and stirring stews.

Buy an Earlywood spatula set here.

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Fibrox Pro Chef's Knifevia amazon.com

Sharp Knife


Every chef knows that their kitchen isn’t complete without a quality knife. This tool is capable of cutting almost anything. For optimal use, plan to sharpen your knife once a week.

Buy a Victorinox knife here.

P.S. This is the best knife sharpener, according to the Taste of Home Test Kitchen.

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French Rolling Pinvia amazon.com

French Rolling Pin


If you’re an avid baker, a rolling pin is a kitchen necessity. We prefer the French style for its clean lines and easy-to-maneuver design. Use it to roll pastry, flatten cookie dough or even pound meat.

Buy an Ateco rolling pin here.

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Le Creuset Signature Enameled Cast-Ironvia amazon.com

Dutch Oven


This Dutch oven is like the cast-iron skillet’s grown up big sister. The pot’s large capacity means it can be used for almost any task, including boiling water, making soups, roasting meat and even baking bread.

Buy a Le Creuset Dutch Oven here.

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Pyrex Smart Essentialsvia amazon.com

Mixing Bowls


We love the versatility of glass bowls. They can be thrown in the microwave, freezer or dishwasher, and they work just as well when cooking as they do when storing leftovers. This lidded set features an assortment of sizes to fit all of your kitchen needs.

Buy a Pyrex mixing bowl set here.

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Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Commercial Baker's Big Sheetvia amazon.com

Sheet Pan


A sheet pan isn’t just for baking cookies. This timeless kitchen tool also roasts veggies to perfection and makes meal prep a breeze (hello, sheet pan suppers!).

Buy a Nordic Ware sheet pan here.

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OXO Good Grips 11-Inch Better Balloon Whiskvia amazon.com

Sturdy Whisk


Sure, there are plenty of appliances that can replace a hand whisk. But for true minimalists, it’s more fun to mix dough, whisk eggs or whip cream by hand. Next, check out 9 kitchen gadgets that do EVERYTHING.

Buy an OXO Good Grips whisk here.

Note: Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Originally Published on Taste of Home

Katie Bandurski
Katie is a writer, editor and recent graduate of Drake University. In her free time, you’ll likely find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.