Before you cook, before you start experimenting, and before you fall in love with something you will be doing for a lifetime, you will need to set up your kitchen.

So let’s start with pots and pans:

  • Two non-stick skillets, a 10” and a 12” are all you will need in the beginning. I own the Calphalon Unison Slide pans, which I find to be quite nice; however, if you choose to buy stainless steel, you will need to have some “Bar Keepers Friend” on hand. This cleanser does a great job at keeping stainless steel pans clean of stains and discoloration. I do own All-Clad and by using the Bar Keepers Friend my pots and pans look brand new to this day.
  • One small (2 quart) saucepan to use from boiling eggs to making sauces.
  • One large (4 quart) saucepan for boiling potatoes and other such things. If you can purchase the larger saucepan with a steam basket insert, it will do double duty.
  • One large stockpot for soups, stews or chili.
  • A roasting pan large enough for baking a chicken or cooking a small roast. A  9 x 13 glass-baking dish can be used for this purpose as well, however, be sure it is oven safe. Mine is a Pyrex.

My best advise – always get the best items you can afford knowing that the key is to take care of what you get. As you learn to cook, you will step beyond the basics and your cooking utensils will grow with your skills!