Calling all home bakers! Whether you’ve picked up the hobby during quarantine or are ready to refine your collection of home baking accouterments, this article is for you. Today we’re discussing home baking must-haves: bread-bakers, pie-makers, cookie mavens and more will delight in our extensive list of kitchen essentials. 

Rest assured, no baking challenge will catch you off-guard if you have the following tools in your kit!


1.) Silicone Baking Mats

While it’s perfectly acceptable to use parchment paper instead, silicone baking mats are our preferred option. Nearly every home baker has had the unpleasant experience of running out of parchment paper at 11 p.m. the night before a batch of cookies must be ready. Silicone mats never run out, barely need to be washed (wiping them clean is often enough) and are the trick to ensuring your cookies are brown, not burnt, and most importantly, never stick to the cookie sheet. 


2.) Sturdy Stand Mixer 

There’s hot debate surrounding which standing mixer is best. In reality, unless you’re putting your stand mixer through the most rigorous home baking routines, a good-quality stand mixer with a long warranty is perfect. Choose a color that makes you happy and get ready to make the most professional-tasting baked goods of your life!


3.) Food Processor

Are you making pie crust? Cheesecake? Pizza dough? Nut butter? Grating cheese? If so, you will want a food processor. Choose one with a variety of blades, a good warranty, and good reviews across the company’s offerings.


4.) Food Scale 

Nothing beats an accurate, sensitive kitchen scale when one is measuring out the ingredients for baking. Flour, butter, sugar, nuts, chocolate, and more are best measured in grams, and recipes that are written by weight are comparatively the more reliable resource. 


5.) Oven Thermometer

Ovens can vary quite a bit from each other, even when set to the “correct” temperature. An oven thermometer placed in the center of your oven will tell you a) where to set your oven to attain the proper temperature and b) how long your oven should be preheated to be fully ready to bake your delicious goods.


6.) Dry and Liquid Measuring Cups and Spoons

This is practically a given. However, not all beginning bakers know that dry and liquid ingredients require different measuring tools. A full set of each is therefore required for most recipes.


7.) Fine-Mesh Sieve 

Dedicated flour sifters perform only one function and take up a lot of room in one’s cupboard. A fine sieve, by contrast, works perfectly well as a flour sifter, a steamer basket, a pasta strainer, and much more. Say “no” to lumpy flour AND useless kitchen gadgets!


8.) Graduated Glass Mixing Bowls

When it’s time to mix up your batter, dough, or wet ingredients, you’re going to be reaching for these, and it’s always nice to have a variety of sizes to meet every recipe’s needs. 


9.) Stainless Steel Bowls

You don’t need a double-boiler for tempering chocolate or whipping together a ganache; just place one of your lightweight stainless steel bowls over a pot of simmering water, and you’re set. 

These bowls are also excellent for weighing your ingredients!


10.) Fresh Baking Powder

A recipe that relies on baking powder for loft, or rise, will not work without fresh baking powder. Whether you’re making pancakes, cupcakes, cookies, or biscuits, make sure your baking powder has been opened within the last 6 months. Store your opened baking powder in a cool, dry place to ensure it lasts as long as possible.


11.) Fresh Bread Yeast

Because it’s a live thing, bread yeast needs to be fresh. Proof your yeast before you begin assembling your loaf of bread and replace it as soon as it stops springing to life when added to sugar and warm water.


12.) Non-Stick Baking Spray

Sure, you can grease a pan the old-fashioned way, but non-stick sprays are a modern wonder. However, we suggest that you spray them in a well-ventilated area and avoid inhaling the mist during use.


13.) Baking Pans

The exact shapes of pan you’ll want for your kitchen will depend on your baking style. Cupcake/muffin tins, bundt pans, square tart pans, half-sheet pans, cheesecake pans, and pie pans are usual options, and we love them all! High-quality, medium-toned non-stick pans are versatile, long-lasting, and tend to render ideal results with the “average” cooking times supplied by most recipes.


14.) Silicone-Coated Whisks

If possible, purchase whisks of different widths and lengths. Silicone-coated tines will prevent your whisk from scratching your bowls and pans, will withstand heat beautifully, and are a breeze to clean.


15.) Pastry Brush 

Available in both silicone and classic styles, pastry brushes are essential for egg washes and brushing baked goods with butter. As a bonus, you can also use them to brush savory dishes with olive oil and herbs before you pop them into the oven.


16.) Silicone Scrapers/Spatulas

You may know them as either spatulas or scrapers, but these tools are excellent for scraping batter from the sides of a bowl. Whether you’re mixing ingredients or pouring them into a pan, you’ll need a set of these colorful beauties.


17.) Cooling Racks

Anything you pull from the oven will spend time on these, so choose high-quality baking racks that have a fine mesh. If the bars are too far apart, your baked goods may sag between them, or even break and fall through.


18.) Fire Extinguisher

Hopefully your home is already equipped with a fire extinguisher, but if you don’t own one yet, we urge you to pick one up before you launch into another baking venture. No baker’s kitchen can be safe without one within easy reach!


Are you a beginning home baker? Which items are you eager to add to your collection? Leave us a comment below and share your favorite recipe of 2021. Thank you for visiting Parks! Happy baking, friends.

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