Cooking Essentials

From the time I was old enough to handle hot pots and pans, I have loved to cook.  My love for baking came as I got older.  When I was younger and healthier, the time and effort it took to cook was no big deal because I enjoyed it. There weren’t all the short cuts and gadgets there are now that make cooking (baking is inclusive of the term cooking) easier. Back then, cooking could take hours.

Well, we all know that MS patients and others with disabilities don’t have hours to spend in the kitchen. One of the most important aspects of managing MS is managing our energy levels.  Reducing the amount of effort it takes to do anything is key.  As much as I enjoy cooking, doing so with MS can be major chore and very unpleasant thing to do.  Having the proper tools and being organized makes all the difference. These two things can make cooking fun and easy.  

Essential Tools for Cooking

  • Chef’s knife
  • Paring knife
  • Wooden spoons
  • Spatula
  • Tongs
  • Meat thermometer
  • Kitchen shears
  • 2 Cutting boards (one for chicken /meat and the other for fruits and vegetables)
  • Colander
  • Nesting bowls with rubber bottoms—keeps bowls from moving as you stir (They usually come in three or four different size bowls that fit inside one another)
  • Prep bowls
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring cup (glass or plastic–1 or 2 cup size; used for measuring liquids.)
  • Measuring spoons
  • Disposable Food Prep Gloves (I like using these for mixing hamburger, meatloaf, any kind of dough, etc. They keep your hands clean.)
  • 1qt, 3qt and 5qt pots
  • 8 in sauté pan
  • 10 in pan
  • 12 in pan
  • Roasting pan
  • 13 in x 9 in casserole dish
  • 2 Baking sheets
  • Oven mitts
  • Crock pot
  • Food processor (If you’re not doing major cooking, I would invest in a small 3 cup food processor for about $25.00 at Amazon.)

Some of these items you can purchase at the dollar store, especially if you’re cooking out of necessity.  I wouldn’t invest a lot of money in things like measuring cups, measuring spoons, cutting boards, bowls etc.  I would invest in good quality knives and pots and pans.  I cook and entertain a lot, so I have purchased good quality stainless steel pots and pan, no more than $30 per item. 

Essential Tools for Baking

Many of the tools you use for cooking can be used for baking:

  • Wood spoons
  • Nesting bowls
  • Prep bowls
  • Measuring cups (for dry ingredients)
  • Measuring cup (glass or plastic 1 or 2 cup size; for measuring liquids)
  • Measuring spoons
  • Baking sheets
  • 9 in x 13 in casserole dish/baking pan
  • Oven mitts
  • Disposable Food Prep Gloves

Additional Tools for Baking

  • Whisk
  • 2- 8in or 9in cake pans
  • Muffin tin
  • 8x 8in  square baking pan or glass dish
  • Rolling pin
  • Ice Cream scoop (good for measuring muffin dough)
  • Paper muffin/cupcake cups
  • Parchment paper

Now because I love to cook and entertain, I have a lot of tools and equipment because I found I need them to cook efficiently. My husband complains about all the stuff I have until he realizes I have a gadget that makes his life easier when he cooks. Amazon and a dollar store are great sources to purchase items.

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