Wednesday, March 31, 2021

The 19th Century Kitchen

Every cook worth her salt appreciates a well-stocked kitchen. The same was true for the 19th-century cook. Of course, budget and location had a lot to do with how many cooking utensils a woman would have access to. Pioneers managed with much less than women in larger cities and still churned out large, wholesome meals for their families and often for their farmer workers or ranch hands while cooking what we would consider primitive conditions.

Here is a list of items a 19th-century cook might have used:


Baking-pans, four, of tin, and shallow

Baking-pans made of Russian iron, two sizes



Blacking-brush, for polishing stove

Block, or thick board, on which to break bones, open lobsters, etc. 

Boards, two, on which to cut bread and cold meat


Bowls, four, yellow earthenware various sizes

Bowls, four, white, and smooth-bottomed, holding one quart each

Boxes, of tin or wood, for rice, tapioca, crackers, bailey, soda, cream-of-tartar, etc

Braising-pan, say of granite-ware, round and deep, with cover

Bread-pans, two, holding six-eight quarts respectively

Brown-bread pans, two

Buckets or tin boxes for sugar, graham, Indian, and rye meal

Butcher's knife


Case knives and forks, two each


Chopping knife and tray




Covers for flour-barrels

Cups, six, holding half a pint each

Dipper with long handle



Double-boiler holding three quarts

Double-broilers, three, — one each for toast, fish, and meat

Dredgers, one each for flour, powdered sugar, salt, and pepper, — the last two to be small

Dustpan and brush

Egg-beater, Dover



Fork, large

French cook's knife


Frying-kettle, Scotch, No. 4 (which is deep)

Frying-pans, French, polished, Nos. 3 and 6






Milk-pans, two

Moulding-board, of hardwood

Muffin-pans, two, of stamped iron

Pail, for cleaning purposes

Pans, four, deep, for loaves of bread or cake

Pots, two, of cast-iron (they come with the stove)

Preserving-kettle, porcelain-lined

Pudding-dish, earthenware

Pudding-mould, round


Roll-pan, French, made of Russian iron, and deep

Scoops, one each for flour and sugar


Skewers, of steel, one set


Spoons, four, large, for mixing purposes


Steamer that will fit onto one of the cast-iron pots

Stew-pans, four, of stamped tin or granite-ware, holding from one pint to four quarts

Stew-pans, three, porcelain-lined, holding from one to six quarts

Stone pots, — one holding ten quarts, for bread; one holding six quarts, for butter; and one holding three quarts, for pork 

Table-spoons, two



Teaspoons, six


Vegetable-cutters, two

Vegetable-knives, two




Wire beater or whisk 

Wooden bowl, for chopping purposes

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Vickie McDonough is the CBA, EPCA and Amazon best-selling author of 50 books and novellas. Vickie grew up wanting to marry a rancher, but instead, she married a computer geek who is scared of horses. She now lives out her dreams penning romance stories about ranchers, cowboys, lawmen, and others living in the Old West. Vickie’s books have won numerous awards including the Booksellers Best, OWFI Best Fiction Novel Award, the Inspirational Readers’ Choice awards. When she’s not writing, Vickie enjoys reading, doing making cards, gardening, reading, and traveling. To learn more about Vickie’s books or to sign up for her newsletter, visit her website:


  1. A well stocked kitchen seems to have had just as many items in it as mine does! This was a fun post, Vickie.

  2. Thanks for the post this morning! Wow, that's a well-stocked kitchen if it has all of those things! I love old kitchenware but I don't let myself buy it! I love the design of the coffee pot but if I had to wait more than 5 minutes for my first cup of coffee in the morning I wouldn't be happy so I'm glad I have an electric one!

  3. this sounds like a well stocked kitchen. I have less than this in my own kitchen. Mom always taught us girls to only have what we used. LOL Although I have gotten other kitchen items and only used it once, so gave it away. quilting dash lady at comcast dot net

  4. That is a Crazy amount of stuff, but then households were larger then. For two or four, you certainly wouldn't need all that. Great post!

  5. Hi Vickie! I love your post and guess what? My mom actually had a wooden spice box almost like the one shown in your post. My brother has it now. It's a beautiful piece of kitchen ware. I just bought Outlaw Heart on Kindle! Have a happy Easter! Take care my dear friend!