The 7 Kitchen Tools Every Cook Should Have

Embrace the power of a sous-vide machine

Here at Tasting Table, we talk about cooking like it's our job. But even after a long day at the office, there's still nothing we'd rather do than spend more time in the kitchen. And after cooking our way through countless cookbooks and recipes to help you live even more deliciously, we know exactly which kitchen gadgets and tools we can depend upon to get dinner on the table.

Once you add these seven tools to your own kitchen collection, we promise that you'll be swearing by them, too.

Microplane Grater

Whether I'm zesting lemon into a dish—a trick that brightens up just about everything—or grating Parmesan cheese—because I mostly make pasta, and every plate requires a generous portion—I use my Microplane constantly. It's handy for other things, too, like grating ginger or garlic. Pro tip: When it comes time to clean your new Microplane, a pastry brush will help you out. Alison Spiegel, Features Editor, $30

Half-Sheet Pans

On busy weeknights, who has time to stand over the stove for an hour cooking dinner? The sheet pan has become my go-to tool for getting a quick, easy dinner on the table in no time. Just throw together your choice of protein and an assortment of veggies on this pan, stick it in the oven and dinner is ready in half an hour. Nisha Chittal, Director of Audience Development, $36 for two

Miyabi Petty/Utility Knife

Oftentimes, you're in need of a knife larger than a paring knife but not as big as a full-size chef's knife. Enter the petty knife, the perfect in-between tool that chefs love to have in their restaurants. I probably use it for 70 percent of my cutting needs and get precision with every slice. Jake Cohen, Food Editor, $175

Sansaire Sous-Vide Machine

They say once you go sous vide, you never go back (right?), and this easy-to-store and even easier-to-use model from Sansaire is what converted me. It's the secret weapon for the most perfect, evenly cooked food imaginable—no culinary degree required. If you've been on the fence about dabbling in the world of the water bath, this is the perfect tool for getting your, er, feet wet. Jane Frye, Managing Editor, $199

Cast-Iron Skillet

Cast iron is the way to go for so many recipes. This versatile pan is the best option for searing steaks and roasts, as well as caramelizing vegetables and frying chicken (gluten free, of course). When I want to make a quick breakfast on Sundays, I use this to make a hash. I also love to use it to bake desserts like giant cookies and corn bread. Delia Mooney, Editorial Assistant, $27 for a 10-inch pan

Miniature Spatula

Baby spatulas are the ultimate tool in declaring independence. They're the right tool for practically everything: getting every smoothie drop out of a single-serving blender, fluffing eggs for one, mixing batter for a mug cake . . . you name it. They go in the dishwasher, are highly heatproof and come in so many adorable designs and seasonal variations that I have nearly as many baby spatulas as forks at this point. When I go, bury me with the reindeer one.

Abby Reisner, Assistant Editor, $10 for two

Victorinox Rosewood Boning Knife

You'll never knew how much you need a boning knife until you get one for yourself. Thin, flexible and razor sharp, this guy makes delicate tasks, like segmenting oranges or dismantling a roast chicken, a breeze—and without looking like a klutz. Oh, and of course, if you ever want to try your hand at breaking down fish or butchering cuts of meat like a certain Turkish badass, this is your go-to tool. Andrew Bui, Editorial Assistant, $52