One television celebrity chef is famous for the idea of only having one unitasker in the kitchen: the fire extinguisher. When stocking a kitchen with the equipment necessary to cook your homemade whole foods meals, this is a great attitude to have. Buying too many specialty gadgets is expensive and takes up valuable storage space. So what gadgets are worth the time and room?
That answer partially depends on your tastes and preferences. After buying the basic kitchen supplies it is time to think of the foods you prefer to eat on a regular basis. If you are leaning towards a Mediterranean diet it is worth purchasing items that help with that. A garlic press can be a handy time saver for making minced garlic regularly. It also helps with ginger root. A pasta maker can help you make whole wheat homemade noodles. In addition, it may be worth thinking of investing in a stand mixer for making homemade breads or other foods that use healthy dough recipes. That also means you may want to grind your own flour. So you may want a wheat grinder. A stick blender is useful for some sauces and soups.
If you prefer more of an Asian style of cooking then your purchases should reflect that. If you do not like to worry about rice, a rice cooker can prepare your brown rice while you do other things. A wok is essential for most stir fries and other Asian dishes. A steamer, whether a basket to attach to your wok or a bamboo basket, can be perfect for Asian cuisine. Specialty knifes may be necessary for some of the fine cuts for sushi.
Many home cooks that enjoy a natural foods life style find themselves making many of their meals from scratch. If that is the case it is probably a worthwhile investment to have a larger pots and pans collection. An increased variety in pans including multiple sizes of frying pans, sauce pans, a sauté pan, a Dutch oven, and cast iron pots and pans gives you more options in the kitchen.
Do not let your friends, family, or television pressure you into buying more kitchen items than you need. Remember that making the change to whole foods can be slightly more expensive at times. That makes it important to collect new equipment slowly if you are on a budget. Let your taste decide the items you buy, not what other people tell you.