Congratulations! You have graduated from the dorms and you now live in your very own house or apartment — that you probably share with three other people.
Whether you lived in Walker, Couch, Adams, Headington Hall or anywhere else on campus, chances are you did not cook for yourself apart from a microwave. The sweet days of the meal plan are over, and the time for independence is now.
This list will help build your kitchen as you move into your own place. Whether or not your stint of cooking at home will last for more than two weeks, these products will make cooking better and easier for years to come.
Unless you are hosting a party, there is no reason to have red solo cups in your apartment. Buying glass or hard plastic cups not only helps cut down single-use plastics but will also make your dinner table look more put together.
2. Cast-iron skillet: $13.25 on Amazon
Anything you want to cook can be cooked in a cast-iron skillet. From steak to scrambled eggs, this is a kitchen staple that only needs to be cleaned with water and occasionally a little olive oil. There are also a plethora of recipes that use a cast iron skillet in the oven, like quiche or s’mores dip.
3. Tongs: $1.49 at Target
In addition to cooking utensils like spatulas and spoons, a good pair of tongs is essential for cooking at home. Whether you’re cooking meat or sautéing veggies, tongs make cooking and serving more convenient.
4. Keurig: $59.99 on Amazon
If you run on coffee, investing in a Keurig will not only save your bank account but will also save you time in the morning. Starbucks lines can be unpredictable, but with a variety of specialty K-Cups to choose from and a machine conveniently in your own kitchen, you can become a barista before your 8 a.m. class. There are also a plethora of eco-friendly K-Cups that contain less plastic, and there is also a refillable cup option.
5. Brita pitcher: $25.64 on Amazon
Cold, filtered water is just a pitcher away with a Brita pitcher. Rather than buying plastic water bottles that get lost deep in the crevices of your room, a Brita will help cut down on single-use plastics and will probably increase your water intake at home. These can take up space, so be sure to coordinate with roommates to make sure the fridge is not stuffed with Brita pitchers.
6. Glass storage container set: $25.49 on Amazon
Meal-prep, the fancy phrase you may have heard tossed around amongst your older, wiser friends, is better in glass containers. Although it is heavier than plastic, glass storage containers leave your food free of chemicals when reheating and can even be used to cook in the oven. Store it in the fridge for however long the food inside lasts and without dying the container like standard plastic tupperware.
7. Lysol all-purpose cleansing spray: $2.49 at Target
With great square-footage comes great responsibility. A good chef takes care of the meal all the way to the end and a good all-purpose spray is the best way to disinfect and clean up your counters. Not only will you be the MVP of your apartment for cleaning, but your family will be so impressed when they come to visit.