My essential baking equipment list:
In addition to the items on my essential kitchen equipment list, these are the things I use to get great results when I’m baking:
- Digital Scales I’m trying to convert you lovely Americans to the merits of weighing rather than using volume when cooking. And if some of you decide to start using grams instead of ounces too I’ll be over the moon! Weighing is more accurate and less messy than using volume cup measurements; meaning you’ll get much more consistent results when you bake. They are also a brilliant way to get children to practice their numbers. Just put any bowl on these scales. Press the re-set button to cancel out the weight of the bowl then add your ingredients. Zero out (or re-set) after each ingredient and add the next. Simple.
- Stand mixer – I use my Kenwood Chef stand mixer to make cakes, cookies and to whip cream and egg whites. My grandma and mum both had a Kenwood so it was not even a question what I’d buy when I got married and finally had the budget for one. This one also has a food processor and blender built in, so cuts down on the number of gadgets you need. They have just launched stateside and are brilliant. Alternatively, you can buy the American classic Kitchenaid stand mixer. I love the red and chrome ones. It is really hands to buy an additional scraper beater as it reduces the amount of time you need to stop and scrape the bowl as you mix. If you are a keen baker it is well worth investing in a spare mixing bowl, particularly if you are making recipes that involve egg whites to be whipped separately from other ingredients.
- Silpat silicone reusable liners. Line your baking pans with these and your food will never stick. They are so easy to clear and can be used time and time again.
- It is very simple, but a cooling rack like this will help you cool your creations without the dreaded soggy bottom!
- I shy away from disposable things, but if you’ve ever tried to clean a piping bag you’ll understand why I will break the rules and buy these disposable piping bags!
- Rolling pins are not just for rolling dough. I use mine to bash meat to make it thinner. I use it to crush ice cubes or cookies for crumbs. My sons use them as weapons. The list goes on. This is my favourite style of adult size and these children’s sized American made rolling pins are both adorable and easy to use for little hands.
- These Jadeite cake stands are what you need to display your creations in the most beautiful way. To avoid storing mine, I use it to hold fruit instead of a fruit bowl when I’m not using it for cake.
- These sturdy muffin pans are great for, well, muffins and tarts. I can’t really say much more than that.
- A spring form cake pan will enable you to easily remove your cakes and cheesecakes from the pan with minimal sweat.
- The classic pie plate. As American as apple pie.
- Pastry or basting brush. If you want to brush egg wash onto your bakes, or brush oil onto your equipment, these silicone brushes are the hygienic, easy clean way to go.
- Scone or cookie cutter set. For perfect scones and cookies.
- Silicone spatula spoons – this or this I have 8 of these as I use them for everything – don’t just keep them for baking as I know many people do. Throw away your wooden spoons and use these instead. They can go in the dishwasher and can be used at super-high temperatures so they are great for stirring food in a pan. They get every last bit out of your pans and bowls so you don’t waste a spot of food, making clean-up easier. I have a mixture of the spoonulas (slight spoon shape) and these more traditional spatulas.
- Measuring jugs I love the way these jugs have the measurements on the side but can also be viewed from above, meaning you’re not always bending down to see how much something measures. I have them in the 2 cup, 4 cup, 1 cup sizes as I cook a lot. If you’re just buying one, get the 4 cup size.
- Cookie sheet/swiss roll tin quarter sheet size. I use this really sturdy cookie sheet [swiss roll tin for English friends] for much more than baking. I use it to roast vegetables or other one pan meals mostly as it copes well with high temperatures and doesn’t buckle like cheaper ones can. But it is also great for all kinds of baking. I often use mine to transport food around instead of a tray too. Just be sure to check that this size will fit in your oven! I usually line mine with parchment or a Silpat reusable silicone liner to make clean up easier and to avoid things sticking.
- Measuring cups and measuring spoons. Because so many US recipes are in cups, I do keep a set of these on hand, even though I much prefer my scales. They work best when recipes are less precise or less fine-tuned. Think rough and ready cookies rather than recipes that require more precision.
- Whisk I use this to mix sauces to get rid of lumps. I also use it to whisk dry ingredients together when I’m baking instead of sieving them.
- Mixing bowls This is a great set of stacking bowls to use when microwaving, prepping or baking. You can also use them to serve salads or other sides or to store things in the fridge.
- Parchment paper I use this ready-cut parchment paper to stop things sticking when I roast or bake and to cut down on scrubbing my pots and pans.
- Toaster oven I took a while to convince myself to buy this as we don’t have them in England so I didn’t really ‘get’ why I needed one. I hate clutter on my counter tops but this is brill. On hot days it doesn’t heat up my kitchen like my regular oven does. It allows me to make small dinners for my boys quickly and easily without resorting to the microwave. It saves energy too. We use it to toast our bread and bagels and I use it to bake cakes, cookies and roast meat and vegetables or bake pasta just like I do in a regular oven. I regularly make dinner for all four of us in this with no difficulty.
How buying from this list will help me as well as you
If you buy these bits of kit through the links below, the price you pay doesn’t change, but I get paid a small percentage from Sur La Table. You can still use any discount codes you want on their site. This partnership helps me fund the time I spend blogging and recipe testing and keeps my class prices down. I will never ever recommend anything I don’t love, even if I’m offered a fortune! I love Sur La Table, their return policy and trust their products completely. Amazon and UK links will be coming soon.