22 Kitchen Essentials to Get Ready for the Holiday Baking Season
“Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays…” And by home, that song definitely meant the kitchen. The kitchen is where holiday memories happen, whether it’s decorating sugar cookies with the kids, sipping eggnog in the evenings or trying to master grandma’s secret recipes. Before the madness of the season descends, stock up on a few essentials (and a few “just because” treats) and get your kitchen ready for a season of baking adventures. Cue the holiday music.
2. Snowflake Dough Cutters ($15): Cover a pie with these lacy embellishments for some serious kitchen cred. It also looks like a sneaky way to dress up a store-bought pie when the holiday season gets too stressful for homemade treats.
3. Silpat Silicone Cookie Sheet Liners (from $22): Save yourself from last-minute trips to the store to get wax paper or spray grease and invest in one of these cookie sheet liners. The French swear these liners are the secret ingredient to pastry perfection… and they do seem to know what they are talking about when it comes to baking.
4. Milk Bottle Market List ($10): Stick this cute notepad on your fridge to make sure you are stocked up on all the essentials like flour, eggs and butter. Lots and lots of butter.
5. Customizable Cookie Stamp ($15): The set is equipped with the entire alphabet so you can personalize your cookies with every single lyric from “Jingle Bells.”.
6. Stone Canisters ($10): This is the year to finally get all your spices and baking supplies out of that ugly plastic packaging and into something a little more counter-friendly. The wooden lid seals the containers and you can always print off little labels so you don’t mix up your cinnamon with your nutmeg.
7. Five Ingredient Baking by Jennifer McHenry ($20): How many times have your baking aspirations been crushed by an ingredient list a mile long? When you don’t have the time or budget to spend on lengthy recipes, grab some ideas out of this awesome cookbook and check holiday baking off your to-do list.
8. DIY Mini Cupcake Stand: You put a lot of work into decorating those little cupcakes so obviously they deserve to be displayed in style. Or if you know a budding baker, DIY a few for a fun, personalized set of bakeware. (via Brit + Co)
10. Le Creuset Apple Tarte Tartin Pan ($165): Any baking enthusiast knows Le Creuset is famous for offering slow, steady heating, so tarts, pies, cobblers and quiches are evenly cooked.
11. DIY Painted Wooden Spoons: Careful, once you give your wooden spoons a color-blocked makeover, all your other utensils are going to be jealous. Pick up an inexpensive set of wooden spoons and paint them just in holiday colors to get the holiday spirit going strong. (via Brit + Co)
12. Personalized Cookie Cutters ($15): Forget plain old stars and circles — with this set of cookie cutters, you can really let your creativity loose. Start with one of the basic shapes and then switch things up by adding words, cut outs and stamps to really make your treats stand out.
13. Giant Gem Speaker ($40): The right tunes are essential to a good baking party, especially during the holidays. It just so happens that Brit + Co has a fantastic Holiday Baking Playlist that will have you dancing around the kitchen and spreading frosting like nobody’s business.
14. Maelle Rolling Pin ($18): Whether your holiday baking plans involve intricate pastries or making sugar cookies with the kids, every kitchen
needs deserves one of these pretty, hand-painted rolling pins.
16. St. Jude Spatula ($13): Not only is this spatula totally festive, it is also helping out for a good cause. For every St. Jude spatula purchased, 25% of the purchase price gets donated to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital which is a pretty cool way to celebrate the holiday spirit.
17. Polka Dot Recipe Box and Cards ($34): There is something deeply satisfying about following a recipe off a paper card. Maybe it reminds us of grandma’s baking. Or maybe it’s because spilled milk on a recipe is “charming” whereas spilled milk on an iPad doesn’t go over so well.
18. Painted Amaryllis Measuring Cups ($38): These measuring cups are so pretty, you won’t want to put them away when the baking is over. If you’re more about cuteness than accuracy, these little beauties would make great kitchen decor in between baking sessions.
19. Vivid Measuring Spoons ($19): There is a time for eyeing that “teaspoon of salt,” and there is a time to measure things out. You might be doing more of the latter with these colorful measuring spoons in the kitchen.
20. Pastry Blender ($15): Chop your way to pie crust perfection with this well-designed cutter that won’t give you wrist cramps while you work.
22. Printable Favor Boxes: The best part about baking is giving away leftovers. Print off a bunch of these cute labels ahead of time and hand out boxes of treats to your guests as they head home. Yep, best hostess of the year goes to you. (via Almost Makes Perfect)
What essentials would you add to this list? Tell us what you’re looking forward to baking in the comments below!
It can be intimidating to step out on your own and build a business from the ground up. As part of our collaboration with Office Depot, we're talking with Selfmade alum and solopreneur Colette Lawrence, the faith-based motivator and relationship builder behind The M.E.E. Movement, about ways in which women in business can find success.
B + C: How did you know M.E.E. Movement was your business to start?
The M.E.E Movement represents motivation, empowerment, and encouragement for women. It is what represents me. I did not know at first that it was my business to start, but then the thought of monetizing what I loved came to me. It scared me, however. I registered the business in July 2020 and have been slowly building my wings since.
B + C: What's one strategy that's helped you start your business?
Thinking through and researching what the requirements are to start my business, and then asking questions of people who are in the business. Not all advice worked; however, it helped me to figure out what I needed to do and not to do.
B + C: Did you always know life coaching would be your entrepreneurial path?
(Smiles) No, I did not. I 'stumbled" on it. I knew that people were always coming to me for advice and I found that I loved having conversations with them, especially with women, young and old.
B + C: What was your most valuable takeaway from Selfmade?
My most valuable takeaway was the first day of training: Get out of your own way. There were a lot of great moments and important takeaways from every presenter. However, getting out of my own way, pushing past doubts, was for me my most valuable takeaway. Doing something that I had never done before took courage. If I do not focus on what is happening with me mentally then I cannot deliver to my clients successfully.
B + C: What's one piece of advice you would give to female entrepreneurs on the brink of starting?
Get out of your head. You have something to offer. You have what you need to succeed so go ahead and do it.
B + C: How do you stay motivated?
I stay motivated by listening to music and listening to motivational speakers, and sometimes someone will just reach out and talk about the impact that I made in their life. That adds the extra juice or sauce I need to pummel through the day.
B + C: What's your best organizational tip?
Keep a diary and journal. It's the best way for me to keep organized and it also provides a source motivation as I record not only my "losses" but my wins as well.
B + C: Who inspires you in the entrepreneurial space?
Shirley Toliver – She motivates and empowers and makes me always want to show up.
B + C: What has receiving the Office Depot scholarship to Selfmade done to help you start or grow your business?
The scholarship was a blessing in that all the areas that were covered offered valuable information that I needed, from social media to HR. As a new business owner, I needed to know this to increase my own personal awareness in what it takes to run a successful business. The candidness of the presenters made it easy to see myself in their shoes and helped me to realize that I can also get there.
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Head to Office Depot's Selfmade page to check out even more amazing business resources (and discounts!) to help you accomplish more on your entrepreneurial journey. These offers are available for a limited time only, so be sure to take advantage of all this goodness while supplies last. Want to join the next Selfmade cohort this summer? Check out all of the scholarship details right here.