Love to Cook? Here are Five Necessities for Any Home Kitchen

For those who love cooking at home, walking into any cooking store can be completely overwhelming as there are so many items one could and should have in their kitchen.  There are a few essentials that will create the foundation for any at home chef before getting started.


Granite Countertops


Granite countertops are a chef’s dream.  Aside from looking luxurious, the characteristics of granite are meant for cooking.  Ready to handle hot temperatures, there is less need for the delicacy of a countertop like laminate.  Also, granite is known to be durable and therefore resistant to cracks and scratching.  Finally, once granite is sealed, it is less porous and therefore resists bacteria. Be sure to connect with a reputable supplier in Sioux Falls when seeking a new granite kitchen countertop.




It goes without saying that knives are crucial in any kitchen; therefore it’s to splurge on good knives.  Consider purchasing a few core knives, and adding on as the budget permits.  Inexpensive knives dull quickly, where more expensive knives hold their sharpness for much longer.  Also, where more inexpensive knives are difficult to sharpen, costlier knives often include a sharpener for real longevity.  Good knives may never need replacing.  To get started consider purchasing a chef’s knife, slicer, utility knife, and a paring knife.


Cutting Board


A requirement for any chef is a reliable cutting board, making a bamboo board a suitable choice.  Bamboo is a very sturdy wood, making scarring from cutting challenging.  Scarring does impact the appearance of the board, but most importantly makes it more challenging for bacteria to sit in cracks and grow.  In addition, bamboo tends to ward off the water, further enhancing its longevity in the kitchen.  Of course, putting a wooden cutting board through a dishwasher will only reduce the water-resistant nature of the board, so ensure to clean the cutting board by wiping with a cleaner – never through the dishwasher.


Gas Range


If the choice is available, a gas range is a necessity for any professional kitchen.  When compared to electric cooktops, gas cooktops provide instant adjustment in temperature.  As they don’t require the need to heat up or cool down, any change in the dial is instantly transferred to whatever is being cooked.  A gas range provides a consistent cooking temperature.  Finally, a gas range heats instantly when compared to an electric cooktop which takes time to reach temperature initially.


Appropriate Cookware


The availability of cookware choices are endless.  The reactivity – how the food reacts chemically to the food is being cooked in; the conduction, how the cookware transfer the heat from the cooktop to the food; all contribute to the type of cookware necessary. Giving careful consideration to what is being cooked including the type of cooking apparatus (gas versus electric) can dictate which cookware is best.  While cookware can costs thousands of dollars, great cookware can be purchased without breaking the bank.


For any at home chef, consider installing a granite countertop, a high-end knife collection, a bamboo cutting board, a gas range, and appropriate cookware.

Unique Uses for Granite Every Savvy Home Designer Should Know

Granite is known for its presence as kitchen and bathroom countertops, but granite can be considered in other areas too.  Below are five other uses for granite that can suit any household.




Granite can be cut into tiles creating a look unique for a giant granite slab.  Granite tiles can be used for shower tiling producing a spa-like result.  Also, granite tiles can be used for the kitchen backsplash.  Rather than installing a solid piece of granite as the backsplash, using the same granite as the countertop but tiled rather than a slab, can also result in a look of luxury.




Granite sinks are unique for the granite used for countertops in that they’re a blend of stone and resin.  This combination results in an incredibly durable product that looks and feels like pure granite.  The result is much more uniform than naturally occurring granite. Because granite sinks are a composite, they are available in many shapes, sizes, colors, and configurations.  Granite sinks are beneficial because they are resistant to heat, scratching and staining.  And, for those who like consistency, can be made out of the same material as a countertop for a truly seamless appearance.




Since granite acts as an excellent decorative and functional surface for kitchens and bathrooms, tabletops are another essential consideration for granite.  Whether creating a dining table or desktop, granite can be placed or any most types of bases.  Keep in mind custom granite countertops, like those available in Sioux Falls, are possible for nearly any project.  Carefully choosing the thickness, color, and edging can add a pop of luxury and style to any room.


Fireplace Mantle


A fireplace mantle is a great place for creating a feature in any home.  Fireplaces can be a feature by just adding a contrasting paint color or wood stain, but adding a sense of luxury comes from adding a stone finish.  Granite is the perfect finishing touch to a gas or electric fireplace mantle.  Both granite slabs and granite tiles can be suitable options for a fireplace mantle.  Choosing the most appropriate color can be an incredible finishing touch to one’s home décor.




Pillars can be made from granite and offer a remarkable first impression.  Either shrouding the entrance to a long driveway or the pillars in front of a home, consider granite pillars for a bold entry to any home.  Pillars can be in any shape with the granite finished in a polished, honed or rough look.


It’s clear that granite has diverse uses.  When one is looking for a touch of luxury, consider adding granite to any home through tiling, sinks, tabletops, fireplace mantles, or pillars.

Best Methods for Increasing a Home’s Value

It’s quite simple to expend loads of cash on home improvements, but any savvy investors know to be cognizant of the improvements that truly result in cash back.  Below, five tips guide the best areas to spend both time and money.




Making a regular habit of removing unused items can help create a sense of spaciousness.  Setting a reminder in a calendar for a monthly or quarterly ‘stuff’ clean-up can keep excess stuff at bay.  Use a three pile system to sort items – those for donation, those for disposal, and those to sell or consign.  Consistent decluttering will create an airy space, leave room for needed storage, and will lessen the overwhelm of any future sale.


Clean Inside and Out


Developing a healthy home cleaning regimen is beneficial in not allowing grime to build over time.  While day-to-day cleaning is often the easiest to tackle, deep cleaning is often overlooked. For example, consider washing windows, wiping blinds, and cleaning baseboards less regularly, but a few times throughout the year.  Also, the exterior is easy to neglect and also should be tended too.


Tackle First Impressions with Fresh Eyes


For those who drive down a street repeatedly, only to see a home bulldozed, then wonder what was there in the first place, it’s easy to understand why after a lengthy period of looking at the same things, we don’t see it anymore.  For this reason, it may be beneficial to engage a third party to offer their first impressions from approaching the home to walking through the front door.  Noted might be tired paint, thirsty plants, a lawn that needs mowing or edging, leaves that need raking.


Upgrade the Kitchen


If a budget permits upgrading the kitchen is a great way to add value to a home.  Consider the installation of a higher end stone, like the granite supplied in Sioux Falls.  While new cabinets are desirable, often the cabinets boxes are in good enough shape, but a reface of the drawers and cabinets fronts is required.  Additionally, consider replacing the kitchen appliances with a more modern choice.  Finally, if considering a large kitchen overhaul, give thought to a new layout and new finishes too.


Upgrade the Bathroom


Similar to a kitchen remodel, the counter and cabinet refacing is a great start to a renovation.  In a home where there are two bathrooms, it is a good idea to upgrade them, but for the home with one bathroom, money might be best spent on adding a second if space and budget permit.


In conclusion, be sure to declutter, clean up, get fresh eyes for a new first impression, upgrade the kitchen and bathroom to increase a home’s overall value.