After living on the Gubba Homestead for two months, I've created a must-haves list of kitchen essentials, and these work for most home cooking kitchens. Because the closest restaurant is 22 miles away, I cook all my meals now! There's so much to do here—just to keep the farm running smoothly—so it's crucial that I save time by preparing multiple meals at once. No longer can I dilly dally about, spending too much time away from my chores.
What are the necessary homestead kitchen tools?
How can I have a homestead kitchen?
What are necessary kitchen tools?
As hard as I work, my ToDo list just keeps growing, so I prep meals ahead of time, freeze the food, and consume it later. All this food prepping has enlightened me on the necessary homestead kitchen tools to simplify from-scratch cooking.
I now rely heavily on my cast iron pan, cast iron handle cover, Dutch oven, cheese cloth, liquid measuring cup, instant pot, crock pot, glass jars, and KitchenAid. Some extras are my vacuum bag sealer and my home grain mill. I use the first items extensively; the latter items I haven’t gotten to quite yet, but I know they'll come in handy. I plan to vacuum seal my bulk flour in measured proportions for recipes, and I have wheat berries I'll grind for storage.
I use my Lodge cast iron 12-inch pan daily. Because it's well-seasoned, I can cook eggs in it and they won’t stick. Farm fresh eggs are a staple to start my morning with. I make sourdough English muffins in my cast iron weekly, and they turn out perfect every time. This is because cast iron holds heat. I fry tacos in it, bake pot pies, and even prepare desserts like cast iron cinnamon rolls. I plan to buy a variety of cast iron pans because I've grown out of using just one—I need more to prepare everything I'm baking and cooking. Because the entire pan will heat up (including the handle,) a cast iron handle cover comes in handy.
A Dutch oven is necessary in a successful homestead kitchen. I received mine a few years ago but never appreciated its versatility until I baked fresh sourdough bread. It's much easier to prepare artisan bread dough and plop it in a Dutch oven than it is to bake it in a traditional oven! I also make certain recipes in my Dutch oven like my white chili, vegetarian orzo, and garden stir fry.
My cheese cloth works best to cover bread for rising. I don’t eat store-bought bread anymore because it's so easy making my own bread (more tasty and healthy too!) My sourdough English muffins rise overnight (12-24 hours) so I cover them with a damp cheese cloth or the dough dries out. My large cheese cloth covers multiple bowls at once. In the past, I've used a cheesecloth for straining, but I’ve found it has other uses around my kitchen, and I plan to get a few more!
I love my liquid measuring cup! In the past I measured liquids and solids (flour, sugar etc.) using the same measuring cup. This was messy and inaccurate. I finally purchased a liquid measuring cup that makes pouring liquids into a pan or a bowl easy. I also bought a fat separating liquid measuring cup. I plan to make bone broth, so a fat separating measuring cup is necessary to separate fat from broth!
My Instant Pot comes in handy for odds and ends. It makes PERFECT rice! I can also use my Instant Pot to make homemade vanilla and yogurt! I don’t use the Instant Pot to make meals often, but I’m thankful for the versatility it gives me.
I love love love my Crockpot slow cooker. It makes cooking easy and worry-free. Saturdays are my slow cooker days: I throw all the ingredients into my Crockpot in the morning and have a hot tasty dinner at night. Slow cooker meals produce days of leftovers if I don’t end up freezing half the batch. Even if I do, I have 1-2 days of leftovers. Since winter came, I've been into making chili in the Crockpot to warm me up as the temperature drops.
My glass jars have multiple functions—fruit and vegetable fridge storage, seed storage, sauce containers, dried product storage. I love using glass jars to store various items from my kitchen. Read my blog How to keep fruit fresher longer or watch my vlog to learn how I extend the life of fruit and vegetables by storing produce in jars! Glass jars are amazing for keeping produce fresh. No more moldy fruits or veggies—not with my glass jar storage method!
The last kitchen tool (but certainly not least) is my Kitchen Aid. I love it because it makes baking easy. I don’t like the sensation of touching flour, so no more kneading dough. Instead, I put my knead hook on my Kitchen Aid and it does the work for me. I love pouring cookie ingredients into the stainless steel bowl and watching them merge. My effort is minimal!
As I spend more time in my Homestead kitchen, I will discover other useful kitchen tools. So far, I've accomplished everything I desired in my kitchen.