This is the second half of Part 1 – The Baking Pantry.  This article will speak specifically to tools and equipment I have in my Baking Pantry. Again, working in someone else’s kitchen you see the tools they use and can make notes to add items to your collection or – if they aren’t foodies, add to theirs. Build your inventory over time, don’t rush out and buy them all at once (unless you want to). As said, I’ve built this up over most of my adult life buying things as I needed them, then wondering how I ever did without them whenever I use them. Some are more critical than others, I have marked these with an “*”.

This list is by no means complete but it is what I have in my list of tools and equipment that kept me happy as a home baker and a Chef. Yes I’ve added specialty equipment since becoming a Chef, but nothing you wouldn’t be able to do without. What’s in your essential list of tools and equipment for baking? I will do a separate list for cooking items, another blog. Pass this list on to anyone getting married, moving out for the first time or just someone who likes to bake but doesn’t quite know what to buy.

*Rolling pinFrench, marble, wood – get “one” that is comfortable for you to use, weight, length, it needs to fit into your hands and you need to be able to roll with it i.e. it’s a rolling pin
*Bench scrapermost versatile tool for baking and for cooking
*Pastry brush please, get the paint brush kind – a bristle brush or soft silicone type. Save the hard plastic ones for the bbq or just don’t buy them at all
*Digital Scalea good one that measures in metric and imperial and gives you portions of ounces and grams. You’ve heard me say this before, baking is a science. Don’t mess with the formula as presented in a recipe – always keep your proportions the same unless you are experimenting and always weigh items for perfectly repeatable results
*Measuring cups2 sets – a 2 cup glass one for wet ingredients is most versatile and a series of 4 (1, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 cup measures) metal ones for dry ingredients – yes there is a difference

*Measuring spoonsI like the metal kind, easy to use, clean and store
Parchment Paper – save’s clean up time and for the most part you can reuse it 2 – 3 times depending on what you are baking on it.  Yes you can also use silicone sheets or something equivalent
*Digital Instant read thermometerI’m putting this in both the baking and cooking section. This is a tool I cannot do without and you shouldn’t be without. Mostly for cooking but sometimes you want the temperature of eggs or water or wet or dry ingredients – there are recipes that require a precise measurement of temperature – remember cooking is an art but baking is a science 
Toothpicks or wooden skewers – best cake tester around
*Rubber spatulabuy good quality ones that will allow you to mix the thickest cookie dough (pictured – red handle, white tip), fold the softest of whipped products and scrape the batter from your mixing bowl – in other words 3 – 5 scrapers of varying sizes as one will not do all the things you need to (see pictures below). Some are designed to tolerate heat – these are great for baking and cooking
*Icing spreader/spatulaa big one and a small one – metal only
Ice cream scoops – so all your cookies bake at the same rate. You can estimate it with spoons but this is so much easier whether you are making more than one batch
*Whiskone big and small metal whisk and one medium sized silicone coated whisk
Ruler – clear (see through) and plastic
*Silicone coated wooden stir stickwhen you get one, you’ll know why – I got mine from a friend in Minneapolis
*Mixing bowlsmetal, glass – whatever your preference, just have them in different sizes. They fit into each other so don’t take up too much room
*Pastry Cuttermost Chef’s like to use their hands but this is a very good tool to have

**Kitchen Aid Mixerif there is one gift you ask for or give yourself, this is it – I’ve had mine for over 25 years and it has made a lot of great treats for family and friends – No home should be without it!
*Kitchen Aid Food Processoryou cannot beat this for making a super smooth cream cheese batter for cheesecakes (not to mention the many other applications you will find uses for)
*Hand mixerfor those applications where you don’t need the big equipment, just the power
*Baking traysheavy, sturdy trays – they don’t need to be non-stick, in fact I prefer non stick as I use parchment paper for all my applications
*Cake Tins2 x 8″ or 9″ round tins (2″ high), 9″ Springform, 8×8 square – good quality ones that you don’t get in sets. I have some non-stick but most are regular, but they are all heavy duty tins. Build your collection over time – they will last you a lifetime –

*Muffin trays I have large and mini trays. 

As mentioned, if you are just starting out, build this inventory up slowly. Don’t waste your money on inexpensive items you have to replace, buy good quality and buy it once – you will be surprised at how long they last. There are of course plenty of other items that you may or may not be able to live without so please feel free to share these items with us.  What other tools and equipment do you use? 

Baking Pantry - Rolling Pins

Baking Pantry – Rolling Pins

Baking Pantry - Spatula's and Spreaders

Baking Pantry – Spatula’s and Spreaders

Baking Pantry - Whisks, Therm's, Scoops, Rulers, Brushes, Measuring Cups and Spoons

Baking Pantry – Whisks, Thermometers, Scoops, Rulers, Brushes, Measuring Cups and Spoons

Baking Pantry - Scale, Bench Scraper, Mixing Bowls, Pastry Cutter

Baking Pantry – Scale, Bench Scraper, Mixing Bowls, Pastry Cutter