The Holidays can be a busy time full of cooking and baking. Time always seems to run in short supply so our Institute of Home Science cooking expert Anna Carl gave us some tips on how to keep your kitchen stocked so you can spend less time shopping and more time on what matters.

The Staple Ingredients: 

  • Flour: all-purpose, cake, bread and corn starch.
  • Leavening: baking powder, baking soda and yeast.
  • Dairy: unsalted butter, eggs, cream, milk, evaporated milk, and sweetened condensed milk.
  • Oil: vegetable, shortening and non-stick spray.
  • Sweeteners: granulated, brown sugar and powdered confectioner’s sugar.
  • Extracts: vanilla, and almond.
  • Enhancers: food coloring, baking chocolate bars, milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate chips.
  • Spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and kosher salt.
  • Wrap-it/Line-it: cupcake liners, parchment paper, aluminum foil, waxed paper, and plastic wrap.


The Basic Utensils:

  • Measuring cups and spoons and a liquid measuring cup.
  • Ice cream scoops: small, medium, large.
  • Gadgets: pastry brushes, rubber spatula, thin metal spatula, vegetable peeler, whisk, tongs, and pastry blender.
  • Basic set of mixing bowls.
  • Hand mixer or stand mixer.
  • Baking Sheets: 2-Flat sheets and one rimmed baking sheet/jelly roll pan.
  • Basic baking pans: 2-9 inch round cake pan, 9×13 oblong baking pan, 8×8 square baking pan, standard muffin tins, 2-loaf pans, ceramic or glass pie pans.
  • Rolling pin.
  • Cooling racks.


Holiday Basics:

  • Cookie cutters
  • Pastry bag with removable tips.
  • Cookie press.
  • Peppermint and mint extract.
  • Pumpkin and apple pie spice.
  • Caramel squares.
  • Marshmallow fluff.
  • Sprinkles.
  • Butter and rum flavoring.


How to Store:

To get the most out of your ingredients and to keep them staying fresh longer you’ll want to store ingredients in air-tight containers. Store the containers in a cool, dry place and out of direct sunlight.

For longer storage, you can freeze items like butter, flour, nuts and spices. Make sure your ingredients are in an air-tight container to lessen the chance of freezer burning.