10 Essential Kitchen Tools Every Raw Chef Needs

Basket of raw food next to herbs on table, to represent raw chef concept.

Your success in the kitchen depends on having the right tools. Cooking requires precision, timing, and technique. Without the proper kitchen equipment, you may struggle to execute your dishes, which can compromise your food quality.

This is especially true for the raw chef. When you’re working with fresh, uncooked ingredients, presentation is everything. As an example, you need sharp knives that can cut your cherry tomatoes evenly, so your salad looks as good as it tastes.  

Basket of raw food next to herbs on table, to represent raw chef concept.
When you’re working with fresh, uncooked ingredients, presentation is everything. Source: Envato.

Raw chefs: Must-have tools

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Here are a few must-haves for anyone who works with raw ingredients — either full-time or occasionally. Any of these make great gifts for the raw food lovers in your life, too!

1. High-speed blender

A good blender is essential for making smoothies, fresh soups, nut milk, and creamy sauces. When choosing a blender, find a model with a powerful motor, durable blades, and a large capacity. You’ll also appreciate a tamper, which pushes the ingredients towards the blades. This comes in handy when you’re blending thicker mixtures.

2. Food processor

A food processor is one of the more versatile pieces of kitchen equipment. Any chef, raw or otherwise, can find a use for it in the kitchen. The processor will make your nut butters, rice cauliflower, chop carrots, grind seeds, and more.

The best food processors have a large bowl plus an assortment of blades and attachments, either included in the box or available for purchase separately. You’ll at least want a chopper blade, slicing disc, and a grater.

A classic choice is the Cuisinart 14-cup. (I have an older Cuisinart processor and it is a workhorse.) The thing is, this processor retails for about $180, making it one of the more expensive kitchen gadgets.

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3. Dehydrator

Use a dehydrator to make raw crackers, fruit leather, or dried fruit. Choose a model with multiple trays, adjustable temperature settings, and a timer with auto shut-off.

This can also be a spendy purchase. You might start with a lower-priced one to refine your technique and your taste for dried foods, and then upgrade later.

4. Spiralizer

Spiralizer cuts cucumber into rounds.
A good spiralizer ensures your raw noodles are consistent in texture. Source: Envato.

I have been through many a spiralizer in my day, so believe me when I say it: Invest in a good one. A cheap spiralizer will crack the second you attempt to noodle a butternut squash. And forget about attempting a carrot noodle.

Find a spiralizer with multiple blade options, rubber feet on the bottom so it doesn’t slip, and sturdy construction. A good, quality piece of kitchen equipment here ensures your noodles and zoodles are uniform and consistent in texture.

5. Juicer

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Juicing is an excellent way to consume various fruits and vegetables in a concentrated form. If you’re not in love with juicing already, try running cucumber, apple, celery, lemon, and ginger through a juicer. You’ll be hooked.

Look for a juicer with a wide chute, high-speed motor, multiple speeds, and dishwasher-safe parts. Most will have a pulp ejection system, which is also essential.  

6. Silicone mat

A high-quality, food-grade silicone mat is essential when preparing raw desserts and snacks. It’s perfect for making raw energy bars, crackers, and other raw treats.

Get a mat that is non-stick, flexible, and easy to clean. A large size mat is helpful if you make your treats in big batches.  

7. Hand blender

You’ll also enjoy have a high-speed hand blender on hand. Use it to make smaller batches of raw soups, dips, salad dressings, and purees quickly.

Find a hand blender with multiple speeds, a powerful motor, and a comfortable grip. A model with interchangeable blades is also useful. That way, you can switch between blending, whisking, and chopping.

8. Sharp knives

As noted, sharp knives are a must. You need them for slicing, chopping, and dicing fruits and vegetables — both quickly and safely.

Dull knives can slip and cause injury. Look for knives made from high-quality materials and invest in a sharpening tool to keep them in top condition.

9. Nut milk bag

A nut milk bag is a fine-meshed bag that strains nut milk, juice, and pulp from fruits and vegetables. You’ll need it to make homemade nut milk and juice.

Look for a nut milk bag made from high-quality materials that can withstand repeated use and washing.

10. Mandoline slicer

A mandoline slicer slices your fruits and vegetables thinly and evenly. You can do this with a knife, but it’s challenging to get an even, thin slice without grabbing a fingertip in the process. You’ll find the mandoline slicer to be essential for making vegetable chips, salads, and garnishes.

The best models are sturdy, have an adjustable blade, a blade guard, and a food holder for safe slicing.

The kitchen tools you need

The right tools in the kitchen allow you to unleash your raw chef creativity. If you can’t get them all today, make a list and distribute that list to family and friends just before your birthday and any major holiday that applies to you. Or save a few bucks to a kitchen tool fund monthly and splurge periodically.

You can also check out World of Blenders for reviews and blender comparisons.