Hello there! Are you a beginner cook looking to make some delicious soup but not sure what equipment you’ll need? Look no further! In this blog post, we’ll go over the essential kitchen tools and equipment you’ll need to make a variety of soups, whether it’s a hearty vegetable soup, a creamy tomato soup or a classic chicken noodle soup. From a large pot or Dutch oven, to a cutting board, measuring cups, and a soup ladle, we’ll make sure you have everything you need to make a delicious and comforting soup. We’ll also give some tips on how to taste and adjust the seasoning of your soup. So, whether you’re new to cooking or just looking to expand your soup-making skills, grab a pen and paper and let’s get started!
Essential Soup Making Utensils
You don’t need lots of expensive gadgets and devices to start making soup at home. Here are a few things a beginner cook making soup would need:
- A large pot or Dutch oven for cooking the soup
- A cutting board and sharp knife for chopping vegetables
- Measuring cups and spoons for measuring ingredients or a pair of scales
- A spoon or spatula for stirring
- A ladle for serving
- An immersion blender or a regular blender for pureeing the soup (if desired)
- A colander or sieve for straining the soup (if desired)
- A bowl and spoon for tasting and adjusting seasoning.
Let’s dig in and take a look at each of these in detail 🙂
A Dutch oven is a heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, typically made of cast iron or enamelled cast iron. It is great for making soups because it is able to distribute heat evenly and retain heat well, allowing for slow cooking and braising of meats and vegetables. The lid of a Dutch oven creates a seal that traps moisture, which is perfect for soups, stews, and braises. The heat retention and even heating also makes it great for soups that need to simmer for a long time. The tight-fitting lid also means less evaporation and splatters, which means less cleaning and less chance of burns. And the Dutch ovens are versatile, you can use it for browning, sautéing, and searing meats, it could also be used on the stove top and in the oven. We have a full explanation of Dutch ovens and how to use them to make soups here – All About Dutch Ovens for Soup Making.
When it comes to chopping boards, there are several types to choose from, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.
- Wooden cutting boards are a classic option and are known for being durable and easy on knives. They are also less slippery than other materials.
- Plastic cutting boards are lightweight and easy to clean, and they come in a variety of colors, which can be helpful for avoiding cross-contamination.
- Bamboo cutting boards are eco-friendly and durable, similar to wood cutting boards.
- Glass cutting boards are easy to clean and are heat-resistant, but they can be hard on knives and are slippery to work on.
When it comes to making soup, a wooden or bamboo cutting board is a good option as it provides a stable surface to chop vegetables and meat and is less slippery than plastic or glass. Wooden and bamboo cutting boards are also more durable and can withstand heavy use.
It’s important to note that regardless of the type of cutting board you choose, it’s important to clean and sanitize it properly after each use to prevent the growth of bacteria.
Measuring Cups / Scales
When it comes to measuring cups, there are several types to choose from, but the most common types used in cooking and baking are dry measuring cups and liquid measuring cups.
- Dry measuring cups are typically made of metal or plastic and come in sets of graduated sizes (1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup, etc.). They are used to measure dry ingredients such as flour, sugar, and spices. They are usually stackable and have a flat top that you can level off with a knife.
- Liquid measuring cups are typically made of glass or plastic and come in a variety of sizes. They have a handle and a spout for easy pouring. They are used to measure liquids such as oil, milk, and broth.
For making soup, both dry and liquid measuring cups are useful. Dry measuring cups are used to measure ingredients like flour, cornstarch, and dry herbs. Liquid measuring cups are used to measure ingredients like oil, broth, and water.
It’s important to note that when measuring ingredients, it’s important to use the correct type of measuring cup and to use proper measuring techniques to ensure accurate measurements, as this can affect the final outcome of the recipe.
A set of kitchen scales would also be helpful for a beginner cook making soup. It allows for precise measurement of ingredients, especially dry ingredients like flour, and can also be used to weigh portions of soup for serving. Some kitchen scales come with a tare function, which allows you to weigh ingredients in a container, and then reset the scale to zero before adding the next ingredient, so you don’t have to keep track of how much you’ve already added.
Cooking Spoons and Utensils
When it comes to cooking spoons and spatulas for making soup, there are several types to choose from, but the most common and useful are:
- Wooden spoons: Wooden spoons are a classic choice for cooking and are known for being durable and gentle on non-stick cookware. They are also less heat-conductive than metal spoons, which means they won’t get too hot to handle as easily. Wooden spoons are great for stirring soups and stews as they won’t scratch the pot.
- Slotted spoon: A slotted spoon is a cooking spoon that has slots or holes in the bowl, which allows the liquid to drain away while the solid food is scooped up. It’s useful for scooping out solid ingredients like vegetables or meat from the soup.
- Ladle: A ladle is a deep spoon with a long handle, which is used for serving soup. Ladles come in different sizes and are useful for portioning out soup into bowls or containers.
- Silicone spatulas: Silicone spatulas are heat-resistant and flexible, which makes them ideal for scraping the bottom of the pot while stirring and scraping the pot to ensure that nothing is sticking or burning.
- Tongs: tongs are a useful tool for lifting and turning ingredients in the soup, especially when you’re cooking with meats or any other food items that need to be turned over.
In general, the tools you choose will depend on the type of soup you are making and personal preferences. Having a variety of tools on hand will allow you to handle different tasks and make the cooking process more efficient.
We have a run down of immersion blenders (stick blender) and how to use them here – Stick Blenders for Soup Making
A soup ladle is a kitchen utensil that is used for scooping and serving soup or other liquids. It is typically a long-handled spoon with a deep bowl, and it is designed to hold a large amount of liquid. Ladles come in a variety of sizes, and the size of the ladle will depend on the size of the pot or serving container.
There are different types of ladles available, including:
- Stainless steel ladles: These are made from high-quality stainless steel, which is durable and easy to clean. They are also rust-resistant and do not absorb flavors or odors.
- Wooden ladles: These are made from wood, which is a natural and eco-friendly material. Wooden ladles are durable and easy to clean, but they need to be hand washed and dried properly to avoid warping and cracking.
- Silicone ladles: These are made from heat-resistant silicone, which is safe for use with non-stick cookware. They are also flexible, making them easy to use and clean.
The best type of ladle for you will depend on your personal preferences and the type of soup you are making. Stainless steel ladles are durable, rust-resistant and easy to clean. Wooden ladles are a natural, eco-friendly option, but need to be hand washed and dried properly. Silicone ladles are heat-resistant and flexible, making them easy to use and clean.
Sieves and Strainers for Soup Making
A sieve, also known as a strainer, is a kitchen tool that is used to separate solid ingredients from liquids. When it comes to making soup, a sieve can be used to strain out any unwanted solids, such as herbs, seeds, or bits of vegetable. There are several types of sieves available, including:
- Mesh sieve: A mesh sieve is a kitchen tool that is made from a mesh wire. It is used to strain liquids and remove any solids. It can come in different mesh sizes, and the size of the mesh will depend on the type of soup you are making and what you need to strain out.
- Chinois: A chinois is a cone-shaped, fine mesh strainer, typically made of stainless steel. It is used to strain custards, sauces, and stocks, it’s a tool commonly used by professional chefs. It’s a very fine mesh and it’s ideal to strain broths and consommes.
- Handheld sieve: A handheld sieve is a small sieve that is held in the hand. It is used to strain liquids and remove any solids. It is useful for small amounts of soup or for straining individual servings.
- Colander: A colander is a large, bowl-shaped kitchen utensil that is used to strain pasta, vegetables and rinse fruits. They are typically made of metal or plastic, and have holes in them. They are not as fine as a chinois or a mesh sieve, but they can be useful for rinsing and straining larger quantities of vegetables or pasta.
The best type of sieve for your soup will depend on the type of soup you are making, the ingredients you need to strain out, and the quantity of soup you are making. Mesh sieves are a versatile option and come in different mesh sizes, chinois are ideal for straining broths and consommés, handheld sieves are good for small amounts of soup, and colanders can be useful for rinsing and straining larger quantities of vegetables or pasta.
Spoon and Bowl for Tasting Soup (and why it matters!)
When it comes to tasting soup, a small spoon and a small bowl are typically the best tools to use. A small spoon, such as a teaspoon, will allow you to taste a small amount of soup without having to use a large spoon that might cool off the soup too quickly. A small bowl will also help to keep the soup hot while you are tasting it.
When it comes to tasting soup, there are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Start by smelling the soup. This will give you an idea of the different flavors and ingredients that are present in the soup.
- Take a small spoonful of soup and blow on it to cool it down before you taste it.
- Take a sip of the soup, and try to identify the different flavors that you taste.
- Take note of the texture, consistency and temperature of the soup.
- Adjust the seasoning as needed. Taste the soup again after you’ve added any new seasoning.
- Finally, if you are unsure about the taste of the soup, you can ask for a second opinion from someone else.
Remember that the soup should be well balanced, not too salty, not too bland, the texture should be consistent, and the temperature should be hot enough to be enjoyed. Tasting the soup regularly during the cooking process will give you the opportunity to adjust the seasoning and make any other necessary changes to the recipe.
In conclusion, making soup is a great way to get started with cooking, and with the right tools and equipment, you can create a variety of delicious soups in no time. We hope this guide has helped you understand the essential kitchen tools and equipment you’ll need for making soup, and that you feel more confident in your abilities to create delicious soups.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, we have a variety of soup recipes on our website, from classic chicken noodle soup to hearty vegetable soup and everything in between. We also have some unique and delicious soup recipes such as pumpkin soup, lentil soup, and even a classic French onion soup. So don’t be afraid to experiment with different flavors and ingredients, and remember to always taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Happy cooking!