From culinary novices to seasoned chefs, I’ve curated a list of my favorite tools and gadgets from Sunset and Co. to get you ready for the start of the holiday cooking season. You’ll find my personal essentials, as well as a few extras that can help you “turn up the heat” on your cooking game as you prepare for Thanksgiving cooking and beyond!
Quality knives will last for years if cared for well – they should be regularly sharpened to ensure effectiveness and safety. Pro Tip: Did you know they can do this for you at Sunset & Co?! Super fast, super efficient, and super easy!
Chef’s knives are the workhorses of the kitchen, used for slicing and dicing just about anything. The wider end makes a good scraper for freshly diced veggies and the sharp tip is great for precision cuts.
Shun Classic 8” Chef's Knife
- The wide blade of the Japanese-made knife keeps knuckles off the cutting board and features a curved belly for easy “rocking” for effective and efficient cutting.
Zwilling Pro Slim 7" Chef's Knife
- Features a full-tang and handle that is triple-riveted for stability and ease, especially when moving from task to task.
While it’s not essential, a butcher block cutting board comes with a few options that you might appreciate, plus it looks snazzy on the counter! I also love having one of these boards for a great option of charcuterie presentation – looks great on the kitchen counter AND the buffet table!
Boos Block Maple Cutting Board
- Hard maple with a 1.5-inch-thick formation, this board features hand grips on the side for easy transport.
Gum Creek Large Cutting Board
- The perfect gift for anyone on your list, these lightweight boards feature less lamination (wood pieces glued together) for an even coloration and finish.
I’m not a big baker, but that doesn’t mean I’m not locked, loaded and ready to whip up a cake on a whim! My favorite “baking” pieces are ones that I can use over and over again and not be confined to just baking!
A pretty pie pan is a functional and attractive kitchen necessity. I don’t limit myself to pies while using mine- it’s also great for baked dips!
Le Creuset Heritage 9" Pie Dish
- Crated of premium stoneware, the interior enamel of this classic piece releases food for an easy clean-up.
Pyrex Clear Pie Dish
- Classically designed for a stylish look, the oversized handle of this pie dish allows for easier handling and less mess in your oven!
Be sure to snag a rectangular casserole dish. Make sure to invest in a good-looking design, so you can take it straight from the oven to the buffet or table for easy serving.
Le Creuset Rectangular Casserole & Le Creuset Rectangular Dish
- Fabulous and coveted stoneware pieces that are totally Instagram-worthy, the hot/cold retention makes for a wonderful presentation from oven to table. Plus, the enamel surface makes for super easy clean-up!
Vietri Italian Large Rectangular Baker & Vietri Italian Medium Rectangular Baker
- Chip resistant, and hand-crafted by Italian artisans in Umbria, these casserole dishes feature a unique size and fun shape. It’s also super nice to know that they are oven-, freezer-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe – you can’t get any easier than that!
I love baking both savory and sweet single serving portions in ramekins. I also use these often as small prep bowls and for casual serving. They are great filled with condiments and pickles on a cheeseboard!
- Harold Imports: 4 oz., 6 oz., 8 oz.
- Durable and versatile, these ramekins are made from fine-quality porcelain and they are safe for the dishwasher, microwave, freezer, oven, and broiler. So many options in these variety of sizes!
Pots & Pans –
Everyone should own an enameled cast iron Dutch Oven - I have a 5.5-quart version, the perfect size for a big batch of chili or even as a pot to boil pasta in. I have also used mine for baking bread! This pot goes straight from the stove to the oven to the table - it’s without a doubt one of my most used kitchen treasures, and will last a lifetime if well cared for.
- Le Creuset Round Dutch Oven - 7.25-Quart, 5.5-Quart, 3.5-Quart
- My absolute favorite go-to, the line of Le Creuset Dutch ovens is unmatched in my kitchen! Like I stated before, I have the 5.5-quart version and use it 3-5 times a week – especially during soup season! The other sizes available are 7.25-quart and 3.5-quart, both combine the latest innovations in comfort and functionality, making Le Creuset unsurpassed in both beauty and quality.
Great Jones The Duchess Oven & Great Jones Dutch Baby Oven
- A great new brand for Sunset & Co., these matte-finish Dutch ovens are so gorgeous and mid-century looking! Enameled cast iron is dishwasher friendly (with a hand dry recommended after a cycle) and safe for all stovetops, including induction! The smaller size fits neatly into the larger size for easy storage as well!
If you’re planning on ever hosting Thanksgiving, or like to entertain larger groups at home, then you should consider a roasting pan with a rack.
Le Creuset Stainless Steel Roasting Pan with Nonstick Rack
- Crafted from non-reactive stainless steel, this roasting pan will maintain it’s shape for years and year without warping. Dishwasher-safe and usable with metal utensils, this roasting pan comes with a nonstick rack to promote air circulation, even heating, and a golden-brown crust – Thanksgiving turkey done right!
OXO Silicone Roasting Rack
- A great set of accessories to have in the kitchen, these silicone roasting racks make any baking dish into a roasting pan with ease! Dishwasher and microwave-safe, they also double as a convenient trivet as well! Can be used solo, side-by-side, or stacked!
I firmly believe that everyone should own an immersion blender: they create minimal mess by blending straight in the pot! I like using them when I don’t want a totally smooth mixture (you can control how much texture remains by blending certain amounts at various speeds). This one from Breville also comes with a mini food processor attachment (amazing for salad dressings, marinades and small batch sauces) as well as a whisk (that I use as a stand in for a hand mixer). It’s an all-in-one wonder!
Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender
- With a revolutionary shape, the Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender features trigger operation, a soft touch finish and bell-shaped base that helps reduce suction for effective and efficient blending.
Vitamix Immersion Blender
- A great alternative to the Breville, this model features a left- or right-handed ergonomic shape with 5 speeds and easy access to containers with as small as a 3” opening.
While the blender can almost do it all, there are extra jobs that the food processor can do better. Perfect for slicing and shredding vegetables quickly and easily this option comes with a large work bowl allows for big batches. Definitely no shortage of use here, whether you’re speed-chopping veggies or delicately preparing sliced accoutrements to a meal, this food processor has you covered!
Cuisinart Food Processor
- With a 14-cup capacity, this sleek kitchen workhorse is a breeze to use and will whip through prep and cooking with ease. With functionality to do everything from chopping fruits and veggies, to shredding cheeses, to kneading dough, this food processor is a top pick from me!
Could I go on? Of course!
There are a million options out there to collect in your cabinets, however, I’m going to stop before I spiral into oblivion! Sunset & Co. is my first stop for all things kitchen because they have such a wide selection and the team of people, like Christopher, that can help answer any of your questions. I hope that this list has inspired you to ready yourself (and your kitchen) for preparing a Thanksgiving meal with confidence!
Great cooks are happy cooks, and happy cooks have well prepped kitchens!