We know the start of a new school year is knocking at the door, and with millions of students heading to college for the first time, and many returning to a less than equipped kitchen, we thought we would write a short article outlining the necessities every college student needs to have a powerhouse kitchen on a budget.
Why buy from a Restaurant Supply Store?
Simply put, when you go out to eat that gourmet meal, do you think the cook used a $300 brass frying pan from William Sonoma, or a commercial quality NSF approved pan that cost $30? When it comes to stocking your kitchen with the right supplies, you don’t need as much as you think, and you don’t have to spend as much as you expect.
Now that we have made our case for buying from a supply store, here is your check list of basic elements you should have in your college kitchen. If you’re in a dorm, we have a few extra things to make sure you can cook like a pro in that co-inhabited 5×5 room.
We’ve made it easy to buy most of these items together on our site. You can add the single burner and blender as options. Buy the College Kitchen Survival Bundle for only $125 on Western Equipment Sales, which includes:
1. One Medium Mixing Bowl – Cost $3.20
You only need one mixing bowl, and lets face it,
the chance of it being dropped is probable, which is why we
recommend your basic stainless bowl. Easy to clean, light weight,
And durable. Oh and did we mention cheap?
2. 10″ Nonstick Frying Pan – Cost $28.90
With limited sink/cleaning space, a non-stick pan is a must. 10″ is big
enough for you to cook for up to 2 people, and it’s big enough for those protein packed omelets you’ll want to eat before test day.
3. 8″ Chef’s Knife – Cost $12.70
You only really need two knives in college, a paring and chef’s knife. This bad boy will stay sharp for you just like it does for the pros. And it’s NSF approved so you know it’s going to be a sanitary knife in your college kitchen.
4. Digital Thermometer – Cost $9.40
The worst thing to have in college is food poisoning, or a reputation for horrible cooking. This cheap little tool will save you from experiencing either of those two in your college years. Cooking meat to the right temp is crucial for producing perfect steak or chicken.
5. 9″ Utility Tongs – Cost $1.20
These tongs may be cheap, but they will get you places. With tongs you can toss a salad, flip that steak or chicken, and turn those pieces of bacon.
6. Plastic Serving/Stirring Spoon – Cost $1.00
You need this basic tool for the majority of your cooking, including stirring that Mac n’ Cheese.
7. Plastic Slotted Serving/Stirring Spoon – Cost $1.00
This is great to have if you are cooking vegetables, or need a spoon for straining food out of a broth or soup. Trust us you’ll use it.
Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. Need I say more?
This comes in handy for skinning or peeling fruit, quartering an apple, or slicing banana’s over your lucky charms.
10. 4″ Pizza Cutter – Cost $5.60
You and I both know that you’ll eat your share of pizza in college. While most of it might be take out, you’ll cook up a pizza or two in your 4 years. And if you are in a house or apartment, you definitely need this tool.
11. Single Burner Range – Cost $90
Without this piece of equipment, you can’t cook in your dorm. If you aren’t in a dorm, this might not be necessary. But if you want to impress your first college boy or girlfriend and cook them dinner, this is a must have.
I know what you’re thinking. Why would I want a blender at college? Let me list off a few uses: Margaritas, smoothies (for those quick breakfasts), salsas, and did we mention margaritas? You’ll want this inexpensive piece of equipment in your dorm or college apartment. Your roommates will thank you.
13. Cutting Board – Cost $8.90
How are you going to show off your chef knife skills without a cutting board? Oh and using a plastic NSF certified board will make sure there is no bacteria hiding away in your cutting board.
14. Medium Sauce Pan – Cost $15.00
This is what you’ll use to make your pasta, mac n’ cheese, and delicious dorm room fondue. One medium sauce pan is all you need in your dorm room area. With commercial cookware, you can always expand your arsenal later; and it all matches! If you are worried about burning your hands, pick up a $7 Cool Handle. And you’ll need a $4.80 sauce pan lid.
15. Measuring Cups and Spoons – Cost $7.00
We rolled these two items together even though you can buy them separately. You’ll need these to measure out everything from herbs and spices, to ingredients in your Mac n’ Cheese. (I keep mentioning Mac n’ cheese because I ate that for lunch.)
Without this small tool, you couldn’t eat half of college’s wonderful food, like spagettio’s, ravioli, and green beans! Oh yeah and soups.
17. Vegetable Peeler – Cost $1.40
You’ll love using this to shave your legs when you run out of razors before a date. Just kidding please don’t do that. Use this for all your carrots, apples, and other great foods you hate the skin on.
18. Mini Bottle Opener – Cost $1.20
I put this in because lets face it, you’re going to need a cold one when you’re studying or watching the football games with your friends.
You’ll need this to finish off your pastas, rinse salads and clean vegetables.
Other Equipment You’ll Need but can Buy Cheap Anywhere
A Microwave – We figured you can get one for $60 at Wal-Mart, or $30 off of Craigslist.
Mini Fridge – Again, you can find these for really cheap at Wal-Mart, or Costco.
We hope that this list of items all packaged together for one price and shipped straight to your address will save you time and money on your hunt for the equipment needed to make your college experience the best one possible!
Western Equipment Sales Team
You can find all of these products individually on our site by clicking on the images or links. But we recommend buying them all together for increased savings.