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I am new to homemaking and want to set up our kitchen and home for being hospitable. Are there any favorite kitchen and houseware items you value when cooking for and hosting others?

Thank you so much!
Dora O. Pen

Dear Dora,

Being hospitable is a godly goal to have as you embark on homemaking. It is always good to keep a mindset of serving your guests rather than showing them what you can do. Having said that, many of my favorite items for service have been gathered over time, as needs arose. I am sure my list is lacking, but if I could hand-pick items again as if starting out, here are a few I would choose:

Roaster and/or large slow cooker

I recently invested in a roaster and I like how it can serve as a second oven when I need it. I often cook my Thanksgiving turkey in it. It can hold large quantities of pasta or meat, and can even be used as a slow cooker/warmer. The downside is roasters take up space. If space is a premium for you, a large slow cooker (7-8 quarts) will enable you to make quantities of food. If you can do both, you will likely use them.


Cold and Hot Beverage service

A drink dispenser for cold beverages is nice to have. Dry drink mixed, iced tea, or water ends up being more economical than purchasing individual drinks for guests.
A coffee pot or Keurig is probably a household staple, but if not, you will want to keep a coffee source on hand. Hot herbal teas are a good idea too.

Extra eating utensils and dinner plates

It is helpful to have extra utensils and dinner plates for company. Extra dinnerware can be found cheaply at thrift stores and estate sales. Corelle ware stores well, stacks small, and is virtually indestructible.  Shop the restaurant section of your Bulk Warehouse stores for affordable extra silverware and other service ideas.

A folding table and chairs

Having an extra table and seating of course enables you to make room for more at the table. Look for tables and chairs which can be broken down and stored easily or which serve a double purpose in your home if you are short on space.

Table cloth and cloth napkins

Paper products can get costly and also can be one more thing to keep in stock. Having a pretty table cloth and a good supply of cloth napkins (which get laundered after each use) is a good way to always be ready to spruce up your table.

I hope those give you some basics that may inspire you. 

Happy serving!