Must-Haves For Tiny Kitchens

When you live in a small apartment, space is always a premium and a kitchen can be much tighter. I certainly suffer from this! I suppose it may not matter greatly if you don’t enjoy cooking, but I love to cook and have to remind myself that I can’t have every gadget and gizmo stuffed into the drawers and cupboards. Even if cooking is not a priority for you, you may be stumped as to what to spend your money on when it comes to useful cookware.

My Musts

  • A good chef’s knife. And I mean good. You can forgo most knives in the block if you’ve got a good chef’s knife, but this piece will cost you.

  • 9×9 ceramic dish. There is no end to its functionality: casseroles, brownies, enchiladas, seven-layer dips; doubles as a serving dish. Okay, you get the picture.

  • A sizeable skillet. Everything can be cooked up in this if it is big enough. If you opt for cast-iron, you can also put it in the oven for a whole other multitude of uses.

  • A good blender. Takes care of all of the S’s in the cookbook: shakes, smoothies, sauces, and smoothies.

  • Large baking sheet. Whether you are a baker or not, it’s helpful to have it on hand to use as a moveable workspace or to catch grease in the oven.

  • Sets of four. Even if you live alone or the most you ever cook for is two people, having a set of four place settings (i.e. dinner plate, fork, spoon, glass, etc.) means having a few extras, which are worth taking up the space.

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My Don’t-Bothers

  • Paper plates. Really, you have no reason to have any sort of disposable dishes or plastic wear on hand. They are a money pit, not eco-friendly at all, and tell-tale that you haven’t grown up yet.  Ross, Marshalls, Homegoods, and thrift stores all have inexpensive kitchenwares.

  • Pots and pans of every size. Chances are you’re not feeding a family of six every night. Choose pots and pans that are sized for serving portions for at least two people but no more than four.

  • More than one entertaining glass. If you enjoy entertaining, there’s no need to have special glasses for martinis, two different wine glasses, high-balls, low-balls, you name it.  Pick a glass that you will regularly use to entertain guests based off your regular tastes, and try to get something that can easily and aesthetically be used for any sort of drink, cocktail, or even dessert serving dish such as a stemless wine glass.

  • Your collectibles and family heirlooms. If you have inherited your grandmother’s china, you are lucky. But opt to safely store it outside of your kitchen for those “special” times so it isn’t in jeopardy of being damaged in tight quarters. Being smashed up next to the plates you use regularly is asking for trouble.