To the casual observer it might seem as though the kitchen of a raw foods devotee wouldn’t need much of anything in terms of kitchen supplies. After all, doesn’t not cooking mean one would not have much need for gear and equipment? The reality is that although high temperature cooking is indeed avoided on a raw foods diet, raw foods still need to be prepared in a variety of low temperature ways to be enjoyed (Here are some no-fail raw food recipes anyone is sure to enjoy). Make raw foods prep a breeze by making sure your kitchen is stocked with these raw food kitchen essentials.
Things You Must Have In Your Raw Foods Kitchen
1. Glass Jars with Lids
Inexpensive and multifunctional, what more could you want from a kitchen item? Glass jars are a terrific staple to have in a raw foods (or any!) kitchen. Not only can these utilitarian jars be used to store leftovers and pack lunches without the chemical risks their plastic counterparts pose, they are also handy to have for making some raw food favorites. Sterilised glass jars are ideal to use to sprout beans and grains and also for fermenting fruits and veggies.
2. Multi-blade Cutting Tool
The way raw foods are cut and sliced can transform the ways you can enjoy them. For example, a mandolin blade can slice fruits and vegetables paper thin, which makes them perfect to dehydrate (see below) into raw food chips. A julienne or spiral blade will turn anything from zucchini to sweet potatoes into fun and fabulous pasta replacements. You can by different tools that do these things separately, but to save valuable kitchen space, look for an option that will cut foods in different styles.
3. Non-toxic Fruit and Vegetable Wash
Removing dirt, pesticides, and germs from fruits and vegetables is important for all foods, cooked or raw, but proper cleaning becomes even more important in a raw foods kitchen. Though heat kills nutrients, it does also kill some risky bacteria. Thankfully, you can kill germs without heat (as well as help remove dirt and pesticides) through careful washing. Keep a spray bottle full of non-toxic cleaner on hands at all times and wash all produce prior to consuming them.
4. Sharp Knife Set
Chopping, cutting, dicing, peeling, and more: a good set of knives is central to almost everything you’ll be doing in your raw foods kitchen. If you are just beginning to stock your kitchen, a quality paring knife and chef’s knife will meet most of your needs, and you can always add to your collection if you notice other needs arising.
5. High Powered Blender and/or Food Processor
When you want to go beyond the basics and try out more complicated raw food recipes, a high powered blender or food processor can be your best friend. Both tools will help you finely puree ingredients to make things like your own nut butters, sauces, and more. A high powered blender will generally give you smoother results and a food processor is typically more successful in retaining the texture of foods, but if space is limited in your, they can each accomplish most of the same functions.
A dehydrator can help you get that craveable crunch in foods. Using low temperatures, a dehydrator gently dries out foods to allow you to make foods like raw crackers from nuts and seeds. You can also dry out fruits to create fun snacks and fruit leathers that are still good for you!
A cold-pressed juicer allows you to extract beneficial things like chlorophyll, antioxidants, and phytochemicals from fruits and vegetables. The major advantage it holds over a blender lies in the amount of nutrients you can pack into a single cup of juice because it extracts just the liquids from produce. Because raw foods tend to be water rich and filling, it can sometimes be challenging for raw food enthusiasts to get enough nutrients and calories into each day.
Veggie packed juices can be a great help to this quandary. Be sure to make juices primarily with vegetables and only a small amount of fruit in order to keep juices from being loaded down with too many sugars. Note: If you are new to a raw foods diet or on a limited budget, it may be more prudent to opt for a blender as you can still make juices using a blender and straining method, though the process will be more time consuming.