Survival tools, Homestead kitchen tools

11 “Out-Dated” Kitchen Tools For Your Survival Ready Homestead


Have you ever thought about what life would be like if all of a sudden our modern conveniences were taken away from us?  Would you have the ability to open the can of Wal-Mart beans in the pantry?  Do you have pots and pans that would survive more than one use cooking supper over an open fire or on a woodstove?  Your scenario might be a week long power outage or simply your own choice to “pull the plug” long term.  Either way, there are some throw backs that still function perfectly and make living simple easier.  This is by no stretch an all-inclusive list, but might help get you started.  Some of these you may still use, we certainly do, but then again, we’re out-dated kind of people and like it that way.  🙂

1. Hand powered Egg Beater – Even a small hand powered beater can do many of the tasks your mixer or blender does and is much easier than using a fork or hand whisk.

2.  Cast Iron Skillet(s) – Cast iron is unbeatable for cooking over an open fire or on a woodstove.  While you’re at it, invest in a cast iron Dutch Oven too.  If you enjoy using a crock-pot or slow-cooker, a Dutch Oven on a woodstove or fire-pit is an excellent equivalent.

3.  16 quart (at least) Stainless Steel Cook Pot – One of these is a must for any homestead whether you’re with power or not.  They aren’t just for cooking soups and stews.  We use ours for scalding culled chickens so they pluck easier and have an old enamel coated one specifically for making wood ash lye to be used for whitening linens, in soap making and in the hide tanning process.

4.  Hand Powered Grain Mill – Think not just grains, but dried, homegrown corn and nuts too.  Peanuts are an easy crop and can easily be turned into small batches of homemade peanut butter for a little comfort food fix.  Acorns can also be foraged and processed into flour using a grain mill.

5.  Manual Seed & Coffee Grinder – One of these is not only good for grinding coffee, roasted chicory or dandelion root, but will be good for powdering dried herbs too.  Yarrow styptic powder is just one example of this.  Another option is an old-fashioned mortar & pestle, but takes a bit more elbow grease.

6.  Stove-top Percolator – One that can also handle being on a woodstove… because a good steaming cup of coffee, chicory or roasted dandelion root will always be a good thing!  You can also opt for a French Press.  With a French Press you heat your water in a kettle or pot and poor it over coffee grounds in the press.  We love ours and it takes the guesswork out of doing it with a percolator if you haven’t practiced with it much.

7.  Rotary Scale – This may seem like a non-essential, but accurate measurements will save you a lot of heartache when making things like soap where you don’t want to waste your resources by guessing at portions.

8.  Manual Knife Sharpener – This can be a “pull-through” or an actual sharpening steel (wand) or whetstone.  A sharp utensil for butchering, skinning, deboning and cooking is irreplaceable on the homestead.  Make sure to choose a sharpener (or two) that you can use for all of your blades.

9.  Non-Digital Cooking Thermometer – Choose a thermometer with a wide temperature range that can accommodate everything from making milk curd for cheese to making jam to preserve your fruit harvest.  You’ll also need a thermometer for some variations of making “mash”… you know, to be turned into products strictly for “medicinal purposes” *wink, wink*.  These “rheumatism cures” will also be in high demand if you find yourself needing to barter.

10.  Manual Can Opener – If you’re stocking store bought canned goods, this can be a big issue.  Sure, you can open a can without an opener, but they take up such little space, why not stash one to make things easy?

11.  Hand Crank/Plunger Butter Churn  – These can by pricey and space consuming, so the next best thing is a mason jar.  Simply shake the cream, using a forceful motion to make sure it “smacks” the bottom of the jar, until you see it separating, then dump it in a fine mesh strainer and rinse with cool water while pressing out the remaining whey.

If you’ve been lucky enough to inherit some of these from family members, be thankful.  If not, try surfing your local thrift store for them.  They are often priced cheap and with a little TLC may be more durable than newly manufactured versions.  What’s that old saying?  “They don’t make things like they used to” and that’s a fact!



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7 thoughts on “11 “Out-Dated” Kitchen Tools For Your Survival Ready Homestead

  1. Sandy S

    Well I do have several of those things. YAY! 7 out of 11 not bad. Used to have a hand beater, but think I gave it away. Thanks 🙂

  2. Michelle Rene

    I used to live in the city. Then I became a country girl and the simple life style is what I like. I have (some duplicates of several of the items listed) 10 out of the 11. I almost said 11 out of 11 because I have a Blue Crown crock butter churn, but I’m missing the paddle that goes on the stick handle. I wouldn’t mind owning a hand crank butter churn. My dad tells me I was born in the wrong era and I should have been born 40 years sooner. How about adding a treadle sewing machine to your list. You can actually find replacement belts and other parts for them. Or you could learn to sew by hand. Simplicity and self reliance is a good trait. Thank you for sharing your ideas!

  3. Hey Michelle! Oh my goodness, that is hilarious, my husband says the same thing about me, hahaha! We actually discussed expanding this article past kitchen items and our treadle sewing machine was on the list… I probably ought to revisit that idea. My husband is working on one that encompasses tools, I think it’s going to turn out really well! 🙂

  4. Michelle Rene

    It’s not very often I get onto the computer, but I look forward to going through all the wonderful looking articles that you have posted in the past. Looking on a tiny screen on my phone isn’t as enjoyable as looking on a computer screen. 🙂 I guess I added the treadle sewing machine to this list because it sits in my kitchen. I love thinking about when I was a little girl and my grandma would have me “help her” sew. I would crawl underneath the cabinet and she would tell me when to start and stop on the treadle. I thought I was such a huge help to her… chuckle. I do have a nice hand crank butter churn on my wish list but I need to save a few dollars more. My blue crown churn is on the large size (3 gallon) for the amount of butter I would like to “crank” out right now. I look forward to seeing the list of tools your husband comes up with. How about the old reel push lawn mower. I just got my grandma’s this past summer from my dad. He was glad to get it out of his shed. My husband doesn’t see the usefulness or humor in my collecting old usable items. He’ll thank me some day. 🙂

  5. Pingback: 80 Ways to Homestead Without a Garden | Tenth Acre Farm

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