If you are a novice baker who wants to deepen your craft, our complete guide to baking essentials for beginners will get your kitchen set up properly. Our list includes 18 baking tools that you won’t want to be without.  

While this list is by no means exhaustive, it will provide you the baking tools you need to whip up your favorite recipes.  

Essential Baking Tools List 

  • Mixing bowls
  • Parchment paper 
  • Hand/stand mixer 
  • Cookie/baking sheets
  • Muffin pan 
  • Wire cooling rack 
  • 8×8 pan 
  • Bread loaf pan (perfect for banana bread) 
  • Round cake pans
  • 13×9 baking pan 
  • Fine mesh sieve 
  • Rolling pin 
  • Whisk 
  • Pastry brush 
  • Silicone scraper 
  • Measuring cups 
  • Measuring spoons
  • Pastry blender 

Mixing Bowls 

colorful mixing bowls

Every baker needs a set of quality mixing bowls. However, not every bowl labeled as a mixing bowl will pass the test. When purchasing a set of mixing bowls, we recommend stainless steel or glass. The important thing to remember is that some recipes will require certain ingredients to be melted. Therefore, you need a bowl that will allow you to do this.  

Parchment Paper 

pastries on parchment paper

Parchment paper, or silicone baking mats, are great when it comes time to clean-up. For instance, when baking cookies, place parchment paper underneath the cookies. This prevents the cookies from sticking to the pan and you can toss the parchment paper away once done.  

Hand/Stand Mixer 

mixer

While a stand mixer is a great investment, you don’t need a fancy stand mixer to get the job done. A hand mixer works just as good.  Regardless of which mixer you choose, both will allow you to mix your ingredients much easier than by hand.  

Cookie Sheets

cookie sheet

Cookie sheets are a tool you need in your baking arsenal. Ideally, you have two or three on hand. One important detail to note is depending on the brand of cookie sheet and what it’s made of, it can impact your finished product. When shopping for a cookie or baking sheet, look for non-stick heavy gauged aluminum. However, keep in mind that eventually the non-stick coating will wear off and you will need to replace the pan. 

Now, you may be asking ‘What’s the difference between a cookie sheet and a baking sheet”. The difference is that a baking sheet has a rimmed edge while a cookie sheet does not.  

Muffin Pan 

A muffin pan is great to have around for whipping up a batch of muffins or cupcakes. However, choosing the right muffin pan can be tricky. There are aluminum muffin pans and non-stick muffin pans.  

An aluminum pan is highly conductive which allows the muffin or cupcake to cook quicker. Aluminum also reflects light which will help reduce browning. However, the pan is sensitive to swings in temperature so look for a pan that has steel reinforced edges. 

A non-stick pan is made of stainless steel. This type of muffin pan cooks more slowly and typically results in a more brown muffin or cupcake. However, thanks to its slower cooking time, it can result in taller muffins or cupcakes.  

Wire Rack 

wire cooling rack

Always let your baked goods cool on a cooling rack. Why? The cooling rack allows air to circulate which allows a more even cooling. Plus, if you leave your baked item to cool in the pan it was baked in, it can continue to cook due to the heat from the pan. 

Baking Pans 

baking pan

The difference between burnt, hard baked goods and soft, delicious ones could very well be the pan. A quality set of baking pans will be your best friend when it comes to baking.  

The brand is entirely up to you and your needs. There are many great options that range from affordable finds to pricier options.  

Keep in mind that if you choose to buy nonstick baking pans, eventually you will need to replace them. However, if you choose to line your baking pans with parchment paper or silicone mats, it will not really matter if you buy nonstick vs stick pans.  

When purchasing baking pans, you will want a variety of sizes.  

Here’s a list to get you started: 

  • 8×8 pan 
  • Bread loaf pan (perfect for banana bread) 
  • Round cake pans
  • 13×9 baking pan 

Fine Mesh Sieve 

sieve for sifting ingredients

Fine mesh sieve’s are great for sifting out clumps, seeds, residue, etc. Many baking recipes call for sifting of flour or other ingredients making this a must in your baking toolkit.  

Rolling Pin 

rolling pin

A rolling pin is a given. You need it to roll out your dough.  

For help on deciding which rolling pin to buy, check out Which Rolling Pin is Best

Whisk  

whisk

When it comes time to stir ingredients, you’ll need a whisk. The narrow wire shapes are perfect for a more even mix.  

Pastry Brush 

pastry brush

A simple pastry brush is essential for brushing on butter for that perfect golden touch or dusting off excess flour. There are a variety of brushes from natural bristled brushes to silicone brushes. Again, it’s a matter of personal preference.  

Silicone Scraper 

silicone scraper

Silicone scrapers are great for incorporating ingredients and for scraping every last bit of batter mix from the bowl.  

Measuring Cups & Measuring Spoons

Measuring cups for baking

Measuring cups and measuring spoons are crucial to the baking process (obviously). All recipes call for precise measurements and being off just a little bit can ruin the outcome. You don’t need anything fancy, a basic set of dry measuring cups and spoons will do. A liquid measuring cup is also handy to have around since dry and wet ingredients are measured differently.  

Pastry Blender 

pastry blender

Pastry blenders are particularly beneficial when making pie dough, biscuits or any dough that requires cutting butter or shortening into dry ingredients. The pastry blender helps cut the butter in more evenly which allows a flakier crust or pastry.