A Man's Gotta Eat.
Men, whether you are single or married, in order to change your health metrics, you need to be able to prepare food at home. To live healthier, you will have to prepare food at home 80% of the time. You do not need to become an expert cook or gourmet. But, you need to be able to feed yourself, your significant other, your family, and your kids healthy meals and lead by example. You will need to be at least a functional cook.
Instead of showing you cool manly gadgets that may or may not be necessary to eat well, this post is a quick run-down of the minimum tools you need in a kitchen to prepare healthy food for yourself or others. I’ve lived and tested the different levels, so when I say you can prepare healthy food at each level, I’ve done it! I’ve divided it up into two levels: bare-bones and basic supplies. After that, there is a whole world of stuff you can have to make preparing real, healthy food easier, more efficient, and more fun.
I’ve included links for purchasing these items directly from this article which will make it a simple one-stop way to supply your kitchen. Nearly all of the items are the exact item I’ve used, and when not the exact item, it is one that is at the same approximate price point like the one I own. As an amazon associate, we make a small commission on every purchase made.
Bare-Bones Kitchen Tools Setup
This might be the single guy newly on his own and due to budgetary constraints or space constraints, needs the absolute minimum to prepare healthy food. We’re talking, ‘don’t have a bed and sleeps on the couch’ bare bones. I highly recommend quality items here as you only need a couple of things.
Here’s my list: cast iron skillet, small pot, cutting board, chef’s knife, spoon, bowl, and colander.
Cast iron skillet. Just buy one. You can cook everything on top of the stove and everything you need to in the oven with this thing- homemade pizza, omelets, stir fry, baked veggies, etc... If you season it right, clean it properly and keep it seasoned, this will be your most used kitchen item aside from your knife and it should last a lifetime! I recommend this one, made in the USA, from Lodge.
Small pot. Making soup, quinoa, sauces, etc., a small pot will serve you well for many self-prepared items.
Chef’s knife. If you are bare-bones, purchase a chef’s knife like the one shown. You will be able to do everything you need to in the kitchen with this one knife. Keep it well maintained and you will use it for life. While the one below is not the exact one I have, it is around the price point of the knife I own and that one has served me well.
Spoon. At this bare-bones setup level, a spoon is more useful than a spatula, and quite frankly can be used as a spatula for a while.
Cutting board. You need to start out with one cutting board. I recommend a bamboo cutting board. Preparing healthy food at home you will use this just about daily. Maintain it per the directions and it won’t have those cuts and grooves that can hide bacteria like the cheap ones you’re tempted to get at the big box stores.
Colander: You are going to be eating healthy. Berries, quinoa, veggies, maybe even whole wheat pasta. You need to be able to clean and rinse this healthy stuff, get yourself a colander with small holes- trust me on this when you rinse your quinoa!
Bowl- A mixing bowl. You are going to have to mix stuff up. Dry and or wet ingredients. Like when you make pizza dough. Of course, there are several things you can do with a bowl, but I believe it is a bare-bones item a man needs to prepare healthy food at home.
Basic Kitchen Tools Setup
The next level for a man's kitchen includes all of the bare-bones tools with the addition of a meat thermometer, spatula, measuring spoon set, measuring cup set, and a veggie peeler.
Meat thermometer. Try this digital one shown here. I prefer digital over dials because it’s faster and gives me an exact number. Overall, ensuring the temp of your food and mixes is necessary for minimizing food illness risk. This, to me, is part of a man’s basic kitchen setup.
Spatula. While with bare bones you can get away with a spoon to perform about every task, when you’re ready for a basic setup, you are ready to include a spatula. It definitely makes flipping, lifting, and dividing easier!
Measuring spoons and cups. Get yourself each set. Remember why you are setting up kitchen stuff- in order to prepare and eat healthy food that will help you attain your objectives. You have to measure stuff out, I’ve tried the other way, trust me, these are a necessary part of a man’s basic kitchen setup!
Veggie peeler. This is quite versatile. Peeling sweet and regular potatoes and carrots, part of healthy food consumption habits, is made much easier with a peeler. When you are primarily preparing your own food at home, you will likely use this 3-5x per week.
Having the right tools for a man’s kitchen makes preparing good healthy food easier and more efficient. This will give you the best chance of maintaining the changes you make over the long term. When you are ready to add more tools to your kitchen, there are a ton of tools to choose from.
Have any other thoughts on bare-bones and basic essential tools for a man’s kitchen? Post in the comments below!