Top 42 Kitchen Tools You Need To Improve Your Self-Sufficiency

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Top 42 Kitchen Tools You Need To Improve Your Self-Sufficiency

Are you trying to improve your self-sufficiency by adopting a homesteading lifestyle? Change should begin in your kitchen. There are hundreds of ways to get closer to the earth through the ways you prepare your food, and the right tools will make the process simple.

Top 42 Homesteading Kitchen Tools

No matter whether your knife skills rival a gourmet chef or you’re a just a beginner at the art of baking, these kitchen tools will help you improve your self-sufficiency while preparing hearty, nutritious meals for your family.

1. Bread Machine

Your vision of a true homesteader might be a housewife who spends hours kneading bread each day, but it’s possible to get the full taste advantages of homemade loaves by turning to a bread machine instead. This brilliant machine lets you add ingredients to the top, press a button, and pull out a fresh-baked loaf an hour or two later. You can use bread makers to blend up everything from cinnamon roll dough, pizza crust, and even jams. This will save you time and money, and you will feed your family a healthier product in the process.

2. Vitamix Blender

Every well-equipped kitchen needs a quality blender, but most of us are used to replacing ours every few years. Not so with the Vitamix. This rugged blender is designed to last a lifetime, and it can be used to blend everything from smoothies to pesto sauce, baby food, bread dough, and even nut butter. Best of all, the blender can self-clean in 60 seconds if you add dish soap and blend.

3. Dehydrator

If your fruit trees are exploding on your homestead, one of the most economical ways to preserve the harvest is through a food dehydrator. Dried fruits last longer than canned, and they make an excellent snack because they retain their nutritional quality without requiring any added sugars or other preservation agents. With your own dehydrator, you can make fruit leather, crispy nuts and seeds, beef jerky, fruit and veggie chips, dried herbs, and more.

4. Pressure Canner

For those who want to preserve as much of their garden bounty as possible, a pressure canner is an indispensable pantry tool. Unlike water bath canners that can only process high-acid fruits, pressure canners let you preserve everything from fruit, vegetables, soups, and even meat. In fact, it is the only method considered safe by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for canning low-acid foods. Buy a quality canner the first time around, and your tool should last for decades.

5. Large Stock Pot

If you’re planning to butcher your own animals, make meals in bulk, or process fruit into batches of jelly, a large stock pot is a fundamental kitchen tool. Large stock pots can also double as water bath canners, meaning that you’ll be pulling one out regularly for all your cooking projects.

6. Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Cast iron has long been a staple for self-sufficient living, and a quality Dutch oven is no exception. You can use this tool to cook casseroles, bake bread, or perform almost any other cooking task, which is why it is considered a preferred cooking tool for professional chefs. Its ability to retain heat makes cast iron excellent for searing meat or slow cooking your favorite dishes. Best of all, this is a kitchen investment that will most likely outlive you in usefulness.

7. Grain Mill

For those who haven’t tasted bread baked from freshly-ground flour, you’re missing out on a treat. Grain mills make it possible to buy bulk goods like wheat, barley, oats, spices, peppercorn and more (even coffee) in bulk, and only grind what you need for each recipe, ensuring that the grains stay as fresh as possible. This saves you money and prevents you from throwing away rancid flour you couldn’t get to in time. Electric and manual crank grain mills are both available, so you can decide how “hands-on” you want to be.

8. Kitchen Aid Mixer

Do you have a passion for homestyle baking? Then life will get much easier once you add a Kitchen Aid mixer to your kitchen. Considered the gold standard for blenders, the Kitchen Aid brand is designed to last for life, and you can buy numerous attachments to improve its functionality, including a dough hook, pasta maker and more.

9. Pasta Maker

Add an extra layer of self-sufficiency to your homestead kitchen by using a pasta maker. Once you taste the chewy, flavor-filled difference that fresh pasta makes, you won’t want to go back to store bought. Homemade pasta tends to cook more evenly and absorb more sauce than commercial, letting you appreciate the full flavors of your dishes. The process is easier than you think with the right tools, meaning that you can put dinner on the table without much effort.

10. Ice Cream Maker

If you’re struggling to put farm-fresh milk to use, it’s hard to beat hand-churned ice cream. A homemade ice cream maker is simple to use; just add your ingredients and get churning. You can customize each flavor with homegrown ingredients, making each pint the perfect way to celebrate your seasonal bounty.

11. Bean Cutter

Growing green beans is easy. Processing them? Not so much. A bean cutter makes it possible to transform fresh beans into slender slivers that are easy to cook or can, and contain a more delicate flavor profile. If you need to process bushels at a time, this tool shouldn’t be excluded from your kitchen.

12. Apple Peeler

Apple season is a highlight for homesteaders, but coring and preserving the bounty is hard work without a designated apple peeler. This tool will peel, core, and slice an apple in a matter of seconds, making it easy to transform slices into a crisp, sauce, or a dried snack. Most peelers offer some versatility in sizing, meaning that you can also use it to peel potatoes and other veggies.

13. Apple Sauce Mill/Tomato Mill

Producing silky smooth applesauce or tomato paste is almost impossible without a food mill. This multi-functional tool is perfect for preparing purees, soups, jellies, and sauces from hot food to make it silky smooth – no tomato seeds left intact.

14. Coffee Grinder

If coffee part of your morning routine, it’s extra satisfying to take the brew into your own hands (literally) by using a manual coffee grinder. Grinding coffee beans releases their aromatic oils, which enhances their flavor profile. Burr-style grinders come with powerful blades to grind your beans to the perfect consistency for whatever your brew is, ensuring that you get a fresh-tasting cup every time.

15. Butter Churn

Few things feel more “back to the land” than munching on homemade bread slathered with fresh-churned butter. Far from being backbreaking, it’s easy to make homemade butter with a modern butter churn. These tools are designed to help you create homemade butter in minutes, so long as you have a fresh cream supply on hand. Delicious!

16. Cheese Cloth

Whether you’re interested in making homemade cheese or prefer to tackle other homesteading projects, cheesecloth is a versatile tool to keep in your kitchen. You can use it for straining curds, making soap, and even canning tomatoes and most cloths can be used multiple times. Strive to buy unbleached cotton cloth when possible so that you don’t expose your food to potential contaminants.

17. Solar Oven

Are you looking for a way to get out of the kitchen on a hot summer day? A solar oven might be the perfect option. These high-powered appliances harness the power of the sun to bake bread, brown meat, or even cook casseroles and root veggies. Depending on the weather, you can have dinner on the table in almost the same amount of time it takes to cook in a conventional oven, and you’ll reduce your home’s carbon footprint in the process.

18. Hand Crank Mixer

Many people choose to live a homesteading lifestyle to get away from the whir of motors. If this sounds like you, a hand crank mixer might be perfect for your kitchen. Give your arm a gentle workout while chopping veggies, pulverizing nuts, or even kneading bread dough more efficiently than you could without it. You’ll feel more connected to your food without wasting time.

19. Kitchen Scale

Some recipes call for exact measurements that mean your measuring cups won’t stack up. In these instances, a kitchen scale is an ideal alternative. This tool is perfect for precise food preservation recipes or soap making, and they’ll make it easier to replicate your results regularly.

20. Popcorn Popper

Few things are cozier than settling in with a bowl of popcorn next to the woods stove, and you can make your own at home with a stovetop popcorn popper. Simple to clean and proven to protect your kernels from burning, using a home popper will make family time feel more special.

21. Stovetop Waffle Iron

Homemade waffles are an exceptional treat, but most conventional waffle makers take up too much space and suck up electricity. Cut down on your carbon footprint by cooking with a cast iron waffle maker instead. This lets you cook waffles right on the stovetop, and the pan’s slim profile makes it easy to store away once you’re done using it.

22. Meat Grinder

Homemade sausage is a special treat for many homesteaders, but you’ll struggle to make your own without a quality meat grinder. This homesteading kitchen tool is essential for anyone that raises livestock or wants to make their own sausage, burgers, or meatballs. Most grinders can also be used to grind dry substances like grains or coffee beans as well.

23. Mortar & Pestle

Are you looking to transform your fresh ingredients into potent dips or sauces? Then a mortar and pestle should be considered a homesteading kitchen staple. Using a mortar and pestle lets you customize the grind size of your spices and rubs, allowing you to take control of the culinary process and express flavor profiles that matter to you. Most mortar and pestles are designed to last for life, so once you buy one you are set for the long term.

24. Juice Press

As much as you might love fresh juice in the mornings, maintaining the habit gets expensive if you’re buying it premade at the grocery store. A better option is to juice your own fruit with a compact, commercial-grade juicer. This makes it possible to pull out all the juice from your favorite fruits without mixing in the pulp.

25. Steel Tea Ball

It’s common knowledge that loose leaf tea can be great for your health, and a steel tea ball makes it easy to brew your own. Whether you’re drying herbs on the homestead for your perfect tea combination or looking for ways to infuse herbs in tea or wine, these balls let you keep the herbs in place and remove them once the infusion is finished.

26. Mandolin Spiral Slicer

Most homesteaders know the panic of producing too much zucchini, and a mandolin spiral slicer will help you get the harvest back under control. This multi-purpose tool lets you cut veggies into spirals of different sizes and incorporate them into a variety of dishes – including as a gluten-free pasta substitute.

27. Immersion Blender

The best way to turn your soups and sauces silky smooth is to blend them directly in the pot with an immersion blender. Most also come with a whisk attachment, making it possible to use it to create everything from heavy whipping cream to mayonnaise.

28. Salad Spinner

For those who grow fresh greens, getting them on the table quickly can often pose a challenge. A salad spinner makes it simple to dry lettuce leaves so that they aren’t dripping wet when you put your salad together, reducing the need for wasteful paper towels to do the same job.

29. Quality Knife Set

If you only invest in one homesteading kitchen tool, a set of quality knives is the way to go. Extra sharp knives make processing ingredients less time-consuming, which gives you more options for exploring new hobbies. While a knife set is the easiest way to secure quality knives, you can also buy them individually as finances allow.

30. Food Hugger

One real problem with producing much of your own food is that it often goes bad before you can get to it. The food hugger makes preserving meals and ingredients easy (and environmentally sustainable) by allowing you to cover food to keep it fresh without resorting to plastic. This makes it easier to prevent raw ingredients from spoiling so you can get back to them on your time.

31. Crock Pot

Life is busy enough without stressing about meals; sometimes you just want to make dinner in the morning and let it cook itself without you giving it attention. A crock pot makes it possible to do just that. Toss in your ingredients, turn it on, and let the power of simmering cook everything for you. Crock pots are an essential homesteading kitchen tool that can make it almost effortless for you to make soups, casseroles, beans, roasts and more.

32. Herb Keeper

Keep your fragile greens vibrant and fresh with an herb keeper– a tool that helps them stay fresh for up to four times as long. A small compartment at the bottom of the keeper lets you add water, ensuring that your favorite flavoring agents stay hydrated and healthy for days longer than they would otherwise.

33. Yogurt Maker

If you have access to fresh milk, a yogurt maker is one homesteading kitchen tool to add to your wish list. These devices make it possible to blend yogurt ingredients, turn on the machine, and let it do the hard work for you. Most yogurt makers allow you to adjust to the fermentation time, ensuring that you can choose precisely how tart the final product will be, and even accommodate non-dairy milk as well.

34. Meat Thermometer

If you want your home-raised meat to be well done, it’s essential to use a meat thermometer to test when the cooking process is complete. Even if you rarely eat meat, a high-quality meat thermometer works well to gauge the temperature of anything you’re making that’s heat sensitive, including yogurt, beer and more.

35. The Instant Pot

This trendy appliance deserves every accolade, as owning an Instant Pot lets you replace numerous other kitchen contraptions, including your crock pot, rice cooker, and more. Instant Pots make it possible to cook soups, stews, beans, bone broth, and so much more in the fraction of the time it traditionally takes, and they are designed to be safe, error-free, and low maintenance. Once you add one to your kitchen, you might be surprised how many uses you find for it.

36. Single Burner for Canning

All kitchen enthusiasts know how valuable burners can be when you’re juggling multiple projects, and hefty canners often take up too much real estate. You can expand your operation with a single burner, which makes it easier to can wherever is convenient for you- even outdoors if the weather permits it.

37. Vacuum Sealer

For the most efficient way to preserve the lifespan of your food, consider vacuum sealing each package to keep it fresh. A vacuum sealer allows you to pull the air out of your food so that it doesn’t spoil in the fridge for weeks. This helps you cut down on food waste, a significant contributor to greenhouse gases.

38. Fermentation Kit

If you’re interested in improving your probiotic intake, a fermentation kit will make it easier to turn your fresh produce into delicious kimchi, sauerkraut, pickles and more. Designed to allow for the proper transfer of carbon dioxide and oxygen through one-way breathable valves, a fermentation kit takes the guesswork out of fermentation so that you can enjoy your pickles faster.

39. Hardy, Wooden Chopping Boards

A disproportionate amount of time in the kitchen is spent prepping ingredients, so it pays to invest in quality cutting boards. Wood is the way to go, as plastic cutting boards tend to retain more bacteria than all-natural ones. It’s best to think twice about using bamboo boards as well, as their extra hard surfaces can damage knives over time.

40. Knife Sharpener

Once you’ve invested in a quality knife, keeping it in good shape should be a top priority. A knife sharpener helps you keep each blade in optimal condition, ensuring that your prep work passes by as efficiently as possible. A quality knife sharpener can be used for pocket knives and serrated blades as well.

41. Canning Jars

Canning jars are a staple component of the homesteading kitchen, even if you don’t want to preserve food. These glass jars are perfect storage containers because they won’t leach toxins into your food, and they make it easy to see what’s stored inside. Keep a supply on hand, and you’ll be amazed at how many uses you find for them.

42. Freeze Dryer

If you’re looking to preserve food so that it withstands any threat, then it’s best to invest in a home freeze dryer. Freeze drying will pull the water content from your meals so that it can last for decades without deteriorating and while still retaining its original taste, texture, and nutritional quality. It’s an impressive achievement that ensures you can stockpile food to prepare in the event of an emergency.

Regardless of where you are on your journey to self-sufficiency, these homesteading kitchen tools can help you improve. Add some to your wishlist, and you might soon pick up a new skill.

About the Author


Lydia Noyes is a natural living enthusiast and full-time freelance writer. She earned a bachelor's degree in Environmental Studies from Calvin College, which serves as inspiration for writing about food, farming, and holistic wellness for both humans and the planet. Lydia's work can be found in print in Mother Earth News, Mother Earth Living, and Heirloom Gardener, as well as dozens of websites.

When not writing, you can find Lydia maintaining her 33-acre hobby farm 'First Roots Farm' in southwest Michigan. Connect with Lydia online at www.firstrootsfarm.com.