30 Tools Aspiring Home Bakers Need To Have

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Baking is a passion for many because of the immersion between art and science. And if you are ill-equipped to bake in your kitchen, you run the risk of poor textures, weird appearances, and bad tastes in your classic baked favorites. We've compiled a list of some of our must-have kitchen utensils for home bakers — whether you're a novice who has yet to perfect a chocolate chip cookie, or a seasoned baker making your own choux pastry at home. You'll find many of these tools have dual purposes for both baking and cooking — and entertaining, too!

When equipping your baking space, look for the materials and tools that you can use the most. If you don't find yourself piping cupcakes or decorating cakes, you might omit buying a piping tip set and piping bags. Bakers who make a lot of loaves of bread may find themselves buying different loaf pan sizes rather than other tools. Regardless, we recommend these items as the standard tools for all bakers — just in case recipe inspiration strikes. Prices may vary.

Silicon spatulas

The silicon spatula is used to scrape bowls, even out batter, and can even work on a stovetop. We recommend purchasing at least two spatulas to have in your kitchen. The first is a standard, 9-inch kitchen spatula, that can be used for almost all applications in baking and cooking. You should also look for a more slender, rigid spatula to clean the nooks and crannies out of your balloon whisk or stand mixer.

Our picks: Rubbermaid Commercial Products High-Heat Spatula ($13.40) and Norpro Silicone Jar/Icing Spatula ($14.55).

Springform round cake tin set

If you want to bake cakes, you have to have something to bake the batter in! A must-have for your kitchen is a round cake tin set in three sizes: 4-inch, 7-inch, and 9-inch. Moreover, we recommend purchasing spring-form pans for easy removal, as well as a non-stick coating for speedy cleaning. We recommend cooking everything in your springform pan from quiche to a sturdy Dutch apple pie. For both of these desserts, the depth of the springform pan, compared to a standard pie plate, is much larger and conducive to baking crusted desserts.

Our pick: Springform Cake Pan Set of 3 ($20.95).

Kitchen scale

If you're baking with dry ingredients, Duff Goldman assures you that having a kitchen scale handy is the only way to get proper measurements. He mentions that using a scale trumps measuring cups because measuring cups leave room for error — especially if the baker cleanly swipes the cup with a knife or not. Packing brown sugar into a cup? The pressure put on the sugar will alter its measurement, thus resulting in an inconsistent bake from batch-to-batch.

Our pick: Etekcity Food Kitchen Scale ($13.99).

Loaf pan

A loaf pan is a staple for recipes like banana bread or vanilla loaf cake. Unlike layered cakes that require flipping, frosting, and shaping, loaf pan recipes allow you to serve the loaf in the pan, or cool it and pop it out of the pan when you're ready to serve. The size of the loaf pan may alter cooking time, per The Boat Galley, because cakes and bread baked in a loaf pan have a smaller surface area and greater depth.

Our pick: Amazon Basics Nonstick Bread Baking Loaf Pan, 9.5 x 5 Inch, Set of 2 ($16.99).

Bundt pan

At first glance, the bundt pan may appear to have a single use in the baker's kitchen. But, these artistically-designed pans are one simple way you can step up your cake-baking profile. Bundt pans can be used for sweet monkey bread or an upgraded pineapple upside-down cake. Unlike tube pans, bundt pans lack a removable core. This means you won't have to worry about batter dribbling out of your bundt pan if you accidentally overfill it.

Our pick: Two Pack Bundte Cake Nonstick OAMCEG 10-inch ($16.99).

Metal pie tin

You can't make your grandmother's favorite apple pie without a pie tin! While some home-bakers swear by the classic ceramic pie plate, we express some caution. Ceramic is not as good of a conductor of heat as aluminum. If you are looking for a more aesthetic pie tin, you should consider purchasing a glass pie plate instead. With a transparent glass plate, you can observe the browning of the crust and check for signs of doneness more easily than with a metal tin or ceramic pie plate.

Our pick: G & S Metal Products Company Ovenstuff Nonstick 9" Pie Pans, Set of 2 ($10.18).

Cooling rack

If you've inadvertently left cookies on the sheet after you've pulled them out of your oven, you've probably noticed the bottoms of the cookies are browner than you intended. Since the metal of the baking sheet is still hot, the cookies can continue baking even when out of the oven. And now enter the cooling rack to solve all of your cookie-cooling problems!

The cooling rack allows air to circulate underneath the cooling baked goods. Moreover, elevating the baked goods above the counter prevents moisture from building up and rendering your lovingly-baked treats soggy.

Our pick: Checkered Chef Cooling Rack – Set of 2 Stainless Steel, Oven Safe Grid Wire Racks for Cooking & Baking – 8" x 11 ¾" ($19.99).

Muffin tin

Muffin tins are essential for folks who love to bake brunch for friends and families or cupcakes for special occasions. But don't be fooled by the simplicity of the muffin tin; you can also use it to bake eggs, carry condiments to a barbecue, or make mini homemade tortilla bowls for taco night. We recommend purchasing a non-stick aluminum pan for the ease of cleaning and the superior conductivity of the metal.

Our pick: Amazon Basics Nonstick Muffin Baking Pan 12 Cups – Set of 2 ($14.50).

Square baking dish

If you plan to bake and serve friends and family frequently, it's always good to have a square baking dish on hand. It's the perfect vessel for fudgy brownies or when you need the dish to cook lasagna. Similar to other baking vessels, the kind of material you choose to use will depend on how fast you want the pan to heat up and retain heat. Non-stick metal pans are a favorite among many because these pans are easy to clean and quickly bake foods. Ceramics and glass are more aesthetically pleasing and suitable for serving.

Our pick: Crock Pot Artisan 13 Inch Enameled Cast Iron Lasagna Pan, Teal Ombre ($59.99).

Parchment paper sheets

Parchment paper is a non-stick, heat-proof, and food-safe paper you can manipulate into different shapes and line your baking pans with. Parchment paper usually comes in thick rolls, but anyone who has worked with parchment for long enough can tell you that cutting the paper cleanly and making it lay flat is a pain in the neck. Instead of buying a roll of parchment paper, you should consider buying pre-cut sheets of parchment. Store the box in a cabinet next to your stove or on top of your refrigerator for easy access.

Our pick: SMARTTAKE 200 Pcs Parchment Paper Baking Sheets, 12x16 Inches Non-Stick Precut Baking Parchment ($20.99).

Piping bags

Piping bags are a baking essential, whether you're piping choux pastry onto a baking sheet or icing a cake for a birthday party. For easy pastry bag filling, we recommend filling your bags using a wide-mouth jar as a mount. Once you pour your filling into the bag, you can easily twist the bag shut, cut a small hole in the bottom, and pipe away!

If you don't have piping bags handy (which you totally should, because of the bag's size in comparison to the latter), you can use plastic zipper storage bags for a DIY piping bag.

Our pick: Ateco Disposal Decorating Bags, 18-Inch, Pack of 100 ($14.47).

Baking pan

Bakers can't live without a baking sheet. You'll use your baking sheet for almost any kind of baking treat, as well as baking non-sweet foods like potatoes and root vegetables. It's important to distinguish the difference between a cookie sheet and a baking pan (or sheet pan). Cookie sheets are much more thin and flimsy than the baking pan, so these implements are not as useful in the kitchen for baking heavy items and foods outside of light cookies.

When purchasing a baking pan, you should pay attention to the color of the material you purchase. Darker pans will cook food faster than lighter-colored baking pans, so you may have to adjust the recipe to fit these parameters.

Our pick: Wilton Easy Layers Sheet Cake Pan 2-Piece, Rectangle Sheet Set ($13.29).

Cookie scoop

If a chocolate chip cookie recipe requires you to scoop out one tablespoon of dough balls, you should expect your cookie sizes to be different. But if you're looking to standardize your cookie scooping sizes, you'll want to purchase a cookie scoop. These scoops are similar to ice cream scoops but have a small mechanical piece that drops the dough from the scoop onto the tray. This leaves your cookies the same size from batch to batch.

Our pick: The Cookie Scoop Set ($22.99).

Pastry brush

A pastry brush can come in silicon or natural hair (via Martha Stewart). We recommend purchasing a natural wooden brush because the bristles are closer together and easily soak up egg wash or cream for dousing pie crusts. You can also use a pastry brush to grease the inside of your pans before baking to ensure no pieces stick to the pan when you're ready to remove your baked goods.

Our pick: 4 Pieces Pastry Brushes Basking Oil Brush with Boar Bristles and Beech Hardwood Handles ($12.99).

Dry measuring cups and spoons

Although measurements on an electric kitchen scale reign supreme, a set of dry measuring cups and spoons are always a good asset to have. If you're making a recipe that requires a small teaspoon measurement, it would be impractical for you to use a kitchen scale to measure this tiny amount of baking powder out. Plus, having a set of measuring cups is valuable when your recipe has an approximation (e.g. "about one cup of apples") and you need a reference.

Our pick: Stainless Steel Measuring Cups And Measuring Spoons 10-Piece Set, 5 Cups And 5 Spoons ($17.98).

Stand mixer

If you're a baker in need of a single appliance in your kitchen (other than an oven, of course), you should invest in a stand mixer. Our favorite brand is the iconic KitchenAid Artisan Series. The design of this machine is impeccable, plus it comes with several attachments for everything from making dough, stirring batter, and even grating root vegetables for a hash. You can purchase the KitchenAid in an array of colors in our favorites like Toffee Delight and Almond Cream.

Our pick: KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-quart Stand Mixer ($459.99).

Rolling pin

If you have a rolling pin and treat it well, you will have it for decades. If you want to opt for simplicity, we recommend trying a simple wooden pin made from cherry or beech. You can also purchase models with handles on either side for better ergonomics and an easier rolling experience. Outside of rolling out a sheet of cookie dough for Christmas sugar cookies or for a shortcrust pastry, use your rolling pin to soften chicken tenderloins or break up garlic cloves.

Our pick: GOBAM Bamboo Rolling Pin, Small, 11 x 1.38 Inches ($9.99).

Pastry mat

Pastry mats are an amateur baker's best friend. You can purchase a silicon baking mat with measurements for easy pie shaping and cutting. When working with a non-stick silicon baking mat, you won't have to worry about adding extra flour so your dough won't stick to the mat. We also love that silicon pastry mats come with measurement conversions on the side of the mat; it makes baking much more simple.

Our pick: Silicon Baking Mat with Measurements, 17 x 23 Inch, Food-Grade Non-Stick Pastry Rolling Sheet ($8.50).

Cake testers

Bryce Shuman recommends always keeping cake testers in the kitchen. The tiny pinprick end of the cake tester in his kitchen at Betony for checking the doneness of vegetables, meat, and fish. But, these testers should also be used to check the inside of your cake before removing the pan from the oven.

According to the King Arthur Baking Company, the tell-tale signs of a cake's doneness include the sides of the cake pulling away from the pan, a fragrant smell emulating from your oven, golden brown color, and a springy texture. But sticking a cake tester into the center of the cake is the pinnacle doneness test. You'll want to stick the test into the center of the cake. If the tester comes out clean (rather than covered in crumbs or wet), the cake is done.

Our pick: 4 pcs Stainless Steel Cake Tester ($5.99).

Oven mits

No one likes grabbing a hot pan coming straight from the oven. It's why you'll need at least one pair of oven mitts to keep in your kitchen. Oven mitts are made with low-conductivity materials to prevent transferring heat from the hot pan to your skin. You can purchase gloves to cover your forearms as well, but most oven mitts only go so far as to cover past your wrists.

Our pick: Extra Long Silicone Oven Mitts, sungwoo Durable Heat Resistant Oven Gloves ($19.99).

Liquid measuring cup

Liquid measuring cups are critical to making sure you have enough wet ingredients for your batter. Plus, if you purchase a tempered glass measuring cup, you can put the cup in the microwave without fear that the glass will shatter or leak plastics into the liquid ingredients.

If you feel thrifty, you may think just to use your dry measuring cups instead. However, dry measuring cups and liquid measuring cups do not have the same shape, so they cannot be substituted 1-to-1 when measuring.

Our pick: Pyrex measuring cup, 4-cup ($15.40).

Balloon whisk

A balloon whisk is a key to fluffy beaten meringues, smooth pancake batter, and light and fluffy frosting. You can even use a whisk in replace of a sifter if needed. Although some whisks come in wood or nylon, metal is a staple material for balloon whisks. To clean your balloon whisk, My Food Book recommends cleaning your balloon whisk by putting the water and soap into a bowl. Leave the whisk overnight to soak to remove stubborn food particles and oil.

Our pick: Ouddy Stainless Steel Whisks ($8.99).

Bench scraper

Breadmakers use the bench scraper to cut pieces of dough and to clean bread residue off countertops. Most bench scrapers are made out of metal and maintain durability for years after purchase. If you want to get your kids involved in cooking, one of the easiest things you can do is give your little one a bench scraper to help cut and "slice" vegetables. It's one of the best tools you can have for less than $10.

Our pick: Amazon Basics Multipurpose Steel Scraper/Chopper with Contoured Grip ($10.19).

Offset spatula

An offset spatula is an important tool for frosting sheet cakes. Most offset spatulas have a wooden or plastic handle that allows for easy maneuvering and frosting. Outside of frosting, Martha Stewart recommends pulling out your offset spatula to add peanut butter and jam to your favorite sandwich. And if you're still set on your butter knife, we assure you that you won't go back after trying out an offset spatula.

Our pick: Ateco 1385 Spatula with 4.5-Inch Stainless Steel Blade, Wood Handle ($5.50).

Set of pastry tips

If you love the artistic parts of baking, you know how important it is to have a good set of baking tips nearby. A proper, neat, and fun piping job can take the appearance of your cake from amateur to professional. To use your decorating tips, you'll want to place the tips in the bottom of the pastry bag before you add the icing.

Our pick: Ateco Stainless Steel 6 Piece Decorating Tool Set ($14.99).

Prep bowls

Mixing, stirring, flipping — what do these methods all have in common? A prep bowl! Having prep bowls in a variety of sizes will help ensure that you always have a prep-bowl handy. When it comes to prep bowls, we recommend tempered glass or a similar heat-resistant material. Aim for a product that is both dishwasher safe and microwaveable for easy clean-up and preparation. Prep bowls can also come in nested shapes so you can store the stack together.

Our pick: Sweejar Glass Mixing Bowls (set of 9) Nesting Bowls ($29.99).


Nobody likes getting flour all over the kitchen and themselves. You'll want to have an apron handy if you need to wipe off your hands after working dough or protect your favorite holiday sweater when baking cookies. Some aprons come with nifty pockets and storage options for your phone, recipe cards, or kitchen thermometer.

Our picks: Chef Apron, Waterdrop Resistant Cotton Canvas Cross-Back Adjustable ($29.99) or The Smart Baker Cheat Sheet, Baking Apron with Measurement Conversions ($29.95).


Sieves are used to drain, strain, and fluff baking ingredients like cocoa powder, flour, and powdered sugar. Sifting these ingredients is important to prevent clumps that throw off both your measurements and the texture of the food after the bake. Bakers also use sieves to garnish delicious baked treats with powdered sugar; use a stencil to create artistic designs with sieved powdered sugar.

Our pick: Stainless Steel Fine Mesh Strainers, Set of 3 ($16.99).

Rotating cake stand

Frosting can be difficult when you can't see all sides of the cake. If you purchase a rotating cake stand, you can easily twist, move, and turn your cake as it's being frosted to ensure an even layer of frosting. Plus, if you purchase a cake stand with aesthetic appeal, you won't have to purchase a separate stand just for serving.

Our pick: Kootek Aluminum Alloy Revolving Cake Stand 12 Inch Rotating Cake Turntable ($36.99).

Wooden spoon

There might not be a sturdier kitchen utensil than a wooden spoon. A wooden spoon comes in handy for scooping, scraping, and spooning batter in your kitchen. And with a wooden spoon, you won't have to worry about the risk of pathogens hiding in the grooves of the wood; as long as you properly wash your wooden spoon by washing it with dish soap and allowing the spoon to air-dry for at least 24 hours. Never put your wooden spoon in the dishwasher because the temperature and power of the dishwasher can strip the wood of its natural oils and make the spoon more prone to nesting pathogens.

Our pick: OXO Good Grips Wooden Spoon Small ($3.99).