How to Build a Baking Pantry, Part III: Equipment (Basic)


[This is Part Three in a four-part series on stocking a baking pantry. You can catch up on ingredients by checking out How to Build a Baking Pantry, Part I: Ingredients (Beginner) and How to Build a Baking Pantry, Part II: Ingredients (Advanced).]

I hope you all found the first two installments of How to Build a Baking Pantry useful. Now that we have your pantry stocked with plenty of ingredients it’s time to identify the equipment needed to start your baking journey. For practical purposes I have only included things in this first list that I feel someone would really truly need to get started baking. After all, our grandmothers were in the kitchen baking and churning out delicious desserts long before Williams Sonoma stocked their shelves with every imaginable pan and gadget. The last thing I want is for baking to seem overwhelming; I want you to be excited about all the goodness that flour, sugar and butter have to offer.

Below is a list of what I would consider the basic pieces of equipment that will get out of the gates and baking. The next installment in the series will go a step further and include more of the appliances, pans and gadgets that most bakers pick up over the course of a few years as they get more serious about baking. I have linked to a number of products that I either currently have or plan on purchasing if I think they are really worth a recommendation. Let me know if you have any questions about any of the pieces listed below. Enjoy!


♦  Hand mixer – I have this Cuisinart model and like it. [I went back and forth with putting a stand mixer in here, but for someone just starting out, you really don’t need it and they are expensive.]


♦  Two 9-inch round cake pans –  standard for any layer cake.

♦  9×13-inch rectangle baking pan – Pyrex or a non-stick will both work.

♦  8 or 9-inch square baking pan (I like having both sizes on hand, but either one will work)

♦  Two loaf pans. Loaf pans come in 9×5-inch and 8¼x4½-inch sizes. Again, I like having both sizes but to get started, you really only need one – either will work.

♦  Muffin/cupcake pan – standard 12 cup capacity size.

♦  Cookie sheets – at least two. Mine need to be replaced, and I am planning on getting these.

♦  Half Sheet Pan (also known as a jelly roll pan) – at least one. I love these.

♦  9″ Springform pan – Essential for cheesecakes!

♦  Bundt pan

♦  9-inch pie pan


♦  Oven thermometer – you can get one for less than $10 at Bed Bath & Beyond

♦  Mixing bowl set. I personally love this 10-bowl nested set from Williams Sonoma.

♦  Liquid measuring cup

♦  Dry measuring cups

♦  Measuring spoons – This magnetic set from Crate & Barrel rocks! Easy to keep them together and they are two-sided.

♦  Rubber spatula – This Le Creuset set is on my wish list.

♦  Muffin/cupcake liners

♦  Rolling pin

♦  Cookie cutters

♦  Cooling rack, at least one, preferably more. These are my favorite.

♦  Pastry brush

♦  Whisk

♦  Tongs

♦  Offset spatula

♦  Microplane zester (This one is awesome for zesting oranges, lemons and limes)

♦  Pastry blender

♦  Pastry cutter/wheel (straight or fluted)

♦  Parchment paper

♦  Cake tester


Stay tuned for the final installment of this series, which will be posted tomorrow, where I’ll wrap up baking equipment.

How to Build a Baking Pantry Series:
Part I: How to Build a Baking Pantry, Ingredients (Beginner)
Part I: How to Build a Baking Pantry, Ingredients (Advanced)
Part III: How to Build a Baking Pantry, Equipment (Basic)
Part IV: How to Build a Baking Pantry, Equipment (Advanced)

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15 Responses to “How to Build a Baking Pantry, Part III: Equipment (Basic)”

  1. BAKING is my ZeN on September 3, 2009 at 8:25 am

    Very useful post for those starting to bake!


  2. Angie on September 3, 2009 at 9:22 am

    Ugh, I wish I were as organized as you! Also, I wish I had space that I could dedicate more than one shelf to baking supplies and that I could take my baking pans out of my linen closest!


  3. Maria on September 3, 2009 at 9:52 am

    Great post! I have an obsession with buying baking tools/pans, etc:)


  4. Carrie on September 3, 2009 at 9:58 am

    i have those le creuset spatulas and i love them. but do you really need a cake tester? i have a box of toothpicks that works fine.


  5. Michelle on September 3, 2009 at 10:03 am

    Hi Carrie, thanks for the review of the Le Crueset spatulas! As far as a cake tester goes – like you, for most things I use a toothpick, however when something bakes up a little higher, I find that toothpicks are too short and use a cake tester.


  6. Eliana on September 3, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Another great post. I wish I had the space to organize my stuff so nicely like you!


  7. Ram on September 3, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    Great post! Can’t wait for the next one tomorrow.


  8. Brianemone on September 3, 2009 at 9:13 pm

    Great list.

    I’d probably change a pastry blender for a piping bag though. I’ve never used a pastry blender but pull out the piping bag every chance I get, whipped cream, icing, fillings.


  9. Deanna@marzipan on September 4, 2009 at 5:57 am

    Try the Tuesday Morning store for the Le Creuset Spatulas. The only thing I don’t like about them is the wooden handle which I always feel I need to hand-wash. I hope you have a birthday coming up so you can get those things on your wish list!


  10. Tracey on September 8, 2009 at 8:49 pm

    Great posts on your baking equipment! I am obsessed with getting more pans and gadgets 🙂


  11. marie on September 16, 2009 at 6:19 am

    I just got a new apartment and my cupboard is bare. This is going to be very helpful when I buy supplies and equipment this weekend.


  12. Naoko on September 22, 2009 at 12:25 am

    Great post, I will need my hubby to come and read this. I’m running out of room for my cooking utensils. heehee


  13. ivy on September 24, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Ooh! I really like this! I will bookmark it for the next time someone looks at me with awed doe eyes when I tell them I cook.


  14. Paul Bedor on August 20, 2014 at 11:57 am

    Your suggestions are magnificent! And since I’m not a full-time baker, I worry about some ingredients going bad/getting bugs. Is there something I can do with these ingredients to keep them fresh?


    • Michelle on August 20th, 2014 at 3:40 pm

      Hi Paul, Since I don’t know which ingredients in particular you’re referring to, in general you can store flours and nuts in resealable bags in the refrigerator or freezer to keep fresher.


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