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Shorter Version


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Do you want to cook more, but have a tiny kitchen? No problem! Being well equipped in a minimalist kitchen creates a sense of relaxation. Multi-purpose and compactable tools are easy to store and keep out of the way while giving you everything you need to cook.

Whether it’s a studio apartment, shared condo, or even your first home, this list of kitchen essentials is perfect for meal prepping in a small kitchen. You’ll be able to save space, energy, and time all while whipping up some delicious meals right from home.

  • Adjustable Measuring Spoon – This is a one size fits all type of tool. One spoon with over 4 different measurements and some ranging from 1/8 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon. Try this double-edged spoon for smaller incremental measurements or stick to the basics with this simple spoon.
  • Collapsible Salad Spinner – As we continue to shop sustainably and avoid packaged leafy greens, a salad spinner is a must! These bowls tend to be large and clunky, so try a collapsible version that’s easy to wash and store.
  • Over-the-Sink Cutting Board – Extend your counter space with your cutting board. Place these over your sink for easy clean-up when you have heavy chopping. This polypropylene board (BPA and phthalate free) has extra-long extensions and a silicone colander insert. For a more natural look, try this bamboo board with collapsible colander.
  • Magnetic Knife Strip – If you’re short on drawer and counter space, you may want to forget about the knife drawer or counter-top knife set. Magnetic knife strips can go on any kitchen wall but work best over the stove or on the wall above the best counter space. The length and material of strips vary. You can get as little as a 10-inch stainless steel strip or 16-inch stainless steel strip. Or stick with the natural look of this 17-inch bamboo wood strip.
  • Collapsible Colander – Just like that big salad spinner, colanders can be shelf hogs. If you don’t already have a colander in your over-the-counter cutting board, you’ll want to keep one of these on hand for rinsing and draining a variety of foods like cooked pasta, canned beans, and washing veggies. Keep it simple with a set of 2 or set of 3 in multiple colors or try this set of 3 with a variety of handle options.
  • Mounted Pot Lid Rack – Another kitchen essential that’s tough to store – pots and pans. While pans are easily stacked inside one another, try mounting the lids on a wall rack. Two great places are the inside of your pantry door or on a discrete wall in the kitchen.
  • Magnetic Spice Jars – Keep your herbs and spices in a cool, dry place by sticking them to your refrigerator. Most cooks keep spices in the cabinet just above the stove but the heat can cause spices to go bad quickly.

Dietitian Tip: Herbs and spices are full of nutritional benefits. By storing these flavors on the side of the fridge in magnetic tin jars like these will also prompt you to use them more often! 

  • Nesting Mixing Bowls – Nesting bowls simply mean bowls they stack within each other. This is another huge space saver. Get this colorful 9-piece set that includes measuring cups and a tablespoon (and a bonus colander!). Stick with a stainless steel theme with a set of 6 bowls. These microwaveable bowls are especially convenient with 6 bowls and matching lids for easy storage.
  • Folding Kitchen Cart – If your kitchen lacks counter space but has ample floor space, a collapsible kitchen island is your best friend! Its folding capability allows for easy storage. It can be used for meal prepping or for serving house guests. There is a wide price range depending on material and durability. Go for a cart with a wood butcher block top like this one with a stainless steel bottom or one that’s completely bamboo wood.  
  • Roll-Up Dish Drying Rack – Dish racks can make a counter look cluttered. Keep it out of sight with a roll-up version that also sits over the sink
  • Immersion Blender – These handheld gadgets are multi-purpose for pureeing, blending, frothing, beating, whisking, and stirring. Get one with multiple attachments for more cooking uses. Most are compact and easy to store. Here’s an 8-speed, 5-in-1 set blender or a simple 3-piece, 6-speed handheld.

There are countless ways to organize your cozy kitchen while making sure you have all the right tools and space to be the next top chef. Keep reading for more details on how to create a minimalistic kitchen.

Skip to Actionable Steps

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Actionable Steps


1

Spring clean your kitchen

Take inventory of your kitchen – the tools, utensils, appliances, and storage containers. Take note of what you have and what you need. What should you keep, what can you donate, what do you still need? Make some space for your new kitchen essentials.

2

Have yourself a merry little shopping spree!

Use the list above or continue researching more essentials in the articles below to make your own kitchen essentials list. Keep in mind the type of storage space, how much storage space, your cooking lifestyle (are you meal prepping once a week or cooking dinner every night?), and the type of recipes you most often make. These will help you determine which utensils and appliances are essential to YOUR kitchen. Get more ideas by browsing the Minimalist Baker’s shopping list.

3

Re-organize all kitchen spaces

Now that you have just what you need and you’ve created new space, take time to re-organize your kitchen and pantry space to promote your health goals. Get more tips on creating a healthy organized pantry from Nutrition Stripped.

4

Read more on this topic

Check out a Dietitian’s Kitchen Essentials by Daisybeet. Business Insider has 19 space-saving gadgets under $60 that every kitchen needs. McKel Kooienga, Ms, RDN, LDN talks about the top 21 Kitchen Essentials Every Kitchen Should Start With.

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About the Author


shannon costello

Shannon Costello

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)

Shannon is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Health Coach, Certified Personal Trainer, and Group Fitness Instructor with over 5 years of experience working in Corporate Wellness specializing in overall health, nutrition, and fitness. Throughout her journey to becoming an RDN, she grew her passion for culinary nutrition by teaching and developing hands-on cooking classes for all ages in the community.
Full Bio | LinkedIn


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