The 19 Best Cooking Utensils to Buy in 2017

Shop for the best cooking utensils and tools to stock in your kitchen

If you’re stocking a new kitchen or you’re upgrading to better equipment, it’s wise to choose quality products that will do a good job and last a long time. And if they look good while you’re using them, that’s an added bonus.

While not everyone cooks the same foods, and not everyone has the same cooking skills, there are some tools that just about everyone needs in the kitchen, no matter what’s being served. Whether you’re looking for something that stirs, preps, measures, or serves, there are...MORE tools that are just right for you.

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    A rubber spatula is a simple thing, but it still benefits from good design. This one has an angled head that’s great for stirring, and it’s made from silicone so it holds up to high heat. The price is high compared to many spatulas, but it’s the one you’ll grab first every time.

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    OXO Good Grips Large Silicone Flexible Turner
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    While all-metal turners are still being sold, flexible silicone turners are becoming more popular since they can be used in nonstick pans without worrying about scratching. This large turner can handle a big burger or a pancake with ease and is flexible enough to sneak under cookies, even if they’re a little close together. The handle has the standard OXO soft grip that’s easy to hang onto.

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    Calphalon 3-Piece Wooden Spoon Set
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    Wooden spoons are a long-time kitchen staple, and for good reason, they’re even gentle enough for modern nonstick pans. The spoons in this three-piece set have a slightly larger handle for a more comfortable grip than many inexpensive spoons on the market. One big plus for wooden spoons is that the handles don’t get hot. The downside is that you shouldn’t wash them in the dishwasher or let them soak too long.

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    Zyliss Safe Edge Can Opener
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    A can opener might be one of those tools that you won’t think much about until you need one, but in the end you’ll definitely need one. This can opener cuts the can lid without leaving a sharp edge, and the lid gripper hangs onto the lid for safe disposal. The opener can be used either right- or left-handed and it has a soft-grip handle that is designed to be less tiring to hold. It’s mostly white with your choice of three different accent colors.

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  • 05 of 19
    OXO Good Grips Vegetable Peeler
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    Having a good peeler makes cooking easier, faster, and much more enjoyable, and this one checks all those boxes. If you do a lot of cooking and peeling, you might want to have two or more of these peelers, so you’ve got an extra when there’s one in the dishwasher or when you have guests who want to help in the kitchen. Some cooks also prefer a y-shaped peeler, which is one of our best slicing tools to buy.

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    Oneida 3-Piece Serving Spoon Set
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    If you serve your meals family style, you need something to get the potatoes from bowl to dinner plate. This three-piece set could be just what you’re looking for. It has three spoons, two solid ones, plus a slotted spoon for serving foods that might be sitting in sauce. The design is classic enough to look good with almost any flatware you might already own.

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    All Clad Large Stainless Steel Soup Ladle
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    Soup is the ultimate comfort food, but to get it from pot to bowl, you need a ladle. This one has a long enough handle to make it useful in your largest pot. Not just for soup, it’s also great for chili, spaghetti sauce, or any similar food that you need to remove from a pot. It might be a bit on the pricey side, but it’s heavy duty and will last a lifetime.

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    Rachel Ray Nylon Pasta Fork
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    There’s really no good way to handle long strands of spaghetti or similar noodles unless you’ve got a pasta fork. Shaped like a cupped hand with the fingers pointing up, it grabs the strands and hangs onto them. This has a nylon head so it can be used in nonstick cookware and is attractive enough to use for serving at the table.

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  • 09 of 19
    Winco Stainless Steel Piano 10-inch Wire Whip
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    Even if you have an electric hand mixer, there are a times when a hand whisk is more convenient. This one has a sturdy handle that’s easy to hold, and enough wires to make it efficient. There are larger whisks in the same design, if you work in large bowls often.

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    Microplane Elite Box Grater
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    This box grater has four grating surfaces plus a shaving blade for thinly slicing vegetables. There’s a removable bottom so you can catch the grated food inside, or leave the bottom off to grate into a bowl. Small windows on the sides let you see how much you’ve grated, and the top handle is comfortable to hold onto.

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    Browne & Co Cuisipro 11-Inch Salad Tongs
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    These simple metal tongs are elegant enough to put on the table during a nice dinner and functional enough to use in the kitchen when tossing salad or plating food. They don’t have springs, so there’s nothing to break, but they also don’t lock in the closed position, so they might be a little unwieldy when stored in a drawer.

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    Dry measuring cups are meant to be overfilled and then leveled off, for a precise measure, which is why you shouldn’t use wet measuring cups for dry foods like sugar or flour. This set includes 1/8, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 3/4 and 1-cup measuring cups, so you’ll seldom need to use two cups or several dips when measuring.

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    OXO Measuring Beakers
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    Each beaker in this set measures a different maximum amount, from one teaspoon to one cup, and they have lines so you can use the cups to measure smaller amounts as well. They nest for very compact storage so they take less space than a single traditional wet measuring cup.

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    POURfect 13-Piece Measuring Spoon Set
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    Measuring spoons can be used for small amounts of either wet or dry ingredients. This spoon set includes spoons in 1/64, 1/32, 1/16, 1/8, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, 3/4, 1 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon, 1 1/2 tablespoon and 2 tablespoon amounts along with a leveling tool. The spoons snap onto a ring for storage and have metric amounts as well as braille for sight-impaired chefs.

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    This thermometer is one of the best on the market. It quickly and accurately measures from -58 to 572 degrees Fahrenheit and the probe is long enough to be inserted into roasts, but reads accurately at the tip, so you don’t have to insert it too deeply. If this one isn't quite right for you, we have more recommendations for the best kitchen thermometers.

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    Tovolo Dripless Baster
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    When you’re basting a turkey, it’s almost inevitable that the baster will either drip or squirt liquid where you don’t want it to go. This baster is designed to be dripless, so you can actually get the liquid onto the turkey instead of onto the floor or walls of the oven.

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  • 17 of 19
    Wilton Silicone Pastry Brush
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    The silicone bristles on this brush don’t stain, can handle high heat, are easy to clean, and you won't shed on the top of your pie. While this is designed for pastry, you could also use it for basting.

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    Shun Kitchen Shears
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    Made from high carbon steel for sharp edges, these shears come apart for easy cleaning. Not just for cutting kitchen string, these can be used for cutting up poultry or cutting tortillas to make chips. They’re expensive, but very high quality.

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    Joseph Joseph Stainless Steel Rocking Garlic Crusher
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    The rocking design of this garlic crusher makes it easy to use and easy to clean, and it doesn’t take much storage space. Since the pressed garlic comes up through the holes, it’s easy to see how much garlic you’ve crushed. Stainless steel helps remove garlic scent from skin, so hand washing this cleans your hands at the same time.