How much kitchenware do I need?

A cluttered kitchen is terrible to use. Limited bench space, rummaging in overstuffed drawers, lifting up dusty caddies to wipe the counter.

I love staying at an Airbnb where they only have the basics. I feel calmer, with more cognitive space.

So. How much kitchenware do I need?

How much kitchenware do I need - a pile of implements and chopping boards

KitchenwareMinimalistAverage JoeAmple
Cutlery – each type61214+
Crockery – each type41012+
Glasses and mugs each61214+
Speciality glasses (wine etc)41012+
Chopping boards246+
Plastic storage containers61015+

How much kitchenware do I need? And this too

  • Colander
  • Glass/Pyrex baking dish
  • Oven tray x 2
  • Oven mitts
  • Chef’s knife
  • Serrated knife
  • Large stirring spoon
  • Ladle
  • Can opener
  • Spatula
  • Measuring cup

But not this

Any unitasker, or item that can only do one thing. Popcorn makers, donut makers, olive pitters, useless decor items, placemats, etc.

See some more examples of household items you definitely don’t need.

And maybe not even this

  • Containers for all your dry goods. Not everything needs to be containerised.
  • Specialty glasses. You can drink wine out of a tumbler – it’s fine.
  • Microwave. You’d be surprised how easy it is to live without.
  • Toaster/sandwich press. The oven can do all this and more.

How much kitchenware do I need? Variables.

  • How many people live in your house, and their ages. This guide is based on four people who are not infants or toddlers.
  • How often you wash dishes. I wash as I go, so don’t need as many.
  • How often you entertain, and what type. The guide assumes infrequent entertaining of a basic nature.
  • How regular and diverse your cooking is. A huge baker can probably justify a stand mixer. Someone who grinds spice a lot needs a mortar and pestle.

Remember to keep like with like, and store items near where you use them.

We wrote an article about clever use of space in the kitchen, which has some great hacks, and here’s how to declutter and clean your pantry, which is the perfect place to get started on your kitchen.

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