Must haves for any kitchen (ie, long lasting?)

What are the must have ingredients and equipment any moderately-geared kitchen should have? Cooking for yourself, family, and occasional guests. I’m asking about spices and such, things that you buy once and don’t have to replace until you run out. Like salt, pepper, paprika etc.

Moved into my apartment and after trying some of the recipes here, it feels like i’m always missing something basic
One of everything McCormick sells, except the premixed spice blends.
*colander (spaghetti strainer)

*cookie sheet (at least 2)
*extra bowls, plates, silver, and glasses
*always have at LEAST 2-4 plastic non-breakable cups on hand so if you have a guest over with a child you only have to worry about spills, not broken glass and spills.
*Pot holders
*Extra sponges (even if you use a dishwasher 24/’s always good to have at least 1 sponge on hand..just in case)
*a hand rag (to tuck into the top of your pants while you’re cooking to wipe your hands on as you go)
*a big wooden spoon
*A big metal spoon (if your pot of water is starting to get that white foam and is getting really really close to boiling over– put a cold metal spoon in the water and turn the heat down a little. the spoon stops it from boiling over)
*a set of really good knives (or at least 1 really good knife)
*paper towels
*guest cloth napkins

Spices and such…

`cooking oil
`salt (not only for food but for putting out kitchen fires)
`garlic (minced garlic in a little jar kept in the fridge is always great)
`ketchup (for when you cook something and it doesn’t come out right..add ketchup to the top, it’ll be perfect)
`Like deusexaethera said…just get one of every basic spice because you will eventually need them
`lemon juice
`onion-always have one on hand

I can’t think of anything else at the moment.
thanks for the suggestions. going to costco tomorrow.
Tongs and silicone spatulas. The calphalon tongs from target work great and can be locked closed. The silicone spatulas from Crate and Barrel work great.
measuring cups (for dry goods and liquids) and measuring spoons
a non stick skillet is generally a good idea for a first apt. kitchen. also
Some things people haven’t mentioned yet –

Cast Iron Pan

I only have 2 good knives, 1 Wusthof paring knife, and 1 Wusthof 9" chef’s knife, both "Classic" I have about 5 other crappy knives that I put in the dishwasher and use for things like slicing up a pear as a snack, etc.

Garlic, I always get garlic when I’m at the grocery store, even if I already have some, because I always find myself needing it.

I use lots of chicken stock/broth too.

Rice(brown, white, arborio), flour, sugar, and oatmeal are always at hand too.

I have 5 plastic cutting boards so I can just use 1 and put it in the dishwasher and not have to waste time washing dishes while I’m trying to get a meal out. I also have mine color coded, yellow for raw meat, blue for onions/garlic/other savory flavors, the other ones get used for whatever

Big bowls – I just got a pyrex bowl set from amazon for $12 that I use in addition to my 2 big cheap plastic bowls

A cooling rack, you use it not just for baking stuff. Mine’s nonstick

A silpat or 2 or 3 if you do any kind of baking, they’re worth their weight in gold.
Spices lose their flavor fast… buy whole spices whenever possible, and grind them yourself.

Get a nice mortar and pestle… I use mine almost every day.

Spices lose their flavor fast… buy whole spices whenever possible, and grind them yourself.

Get a nice mortar and pestle… I use mine almost every day.

I buy spices that I don’t use often in the smallest possible quantities.

absolutely – whatever you do, don’t buy the giant spice bottles at the warehouse store – they will be way stale by the time you use them up

if you have a penzey’s near you, their spices aren’t too expensive and are better quality IMO – you can shop from them via online or catalog as well

many of their spices come in cello resealable bags, store them all together in a zip lock, they’ll stay nice for the year or so that you’ll have them if you can’t afford the containers all at once

I would add a *rimmed" cookie sheet – 10 x 15 ish
definitely the tongs and silicone spatula
non-stick skillet – 12"
13 x 9 pyrex pan for lasagna or brownies
one heavy pot with a lid that can go in the oven or on the stove – walmart has a nice one for about $30 that is 6 quarts and can hold a whole chicken
microplane grater – get the size that you would use for parmagiana first, then the bigger then the littlest
pepper mill

really basic ingredients not mentioned:
cider vinegar – to make salad dressings, bbq sauces
dry mustard and/or dijon adds nice flavor to many dishes
cornstarch – all purpose thickener and makes roast chicken skin crispy
Oh, of course Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar, and honey. You can make killer salad dressings with this. I also always use lime juice. I’ve found the best "bottled" lime juice is Nelly and Joe’s key lime juice.

A Blendtec Blender.

I just got one and I don’t know what I did without it before.
KitchenAide stand mixer
food processor
electric griddle
oven gloves can be replaced with welding gloves, I like them alot more since they are cheap (4.50 a pair) and can be used around the bbq too.

A good sharp knife is a must, keep it sharp because you are more likely to hurt your self if you don’t. Dexter Russel Makes good knives that hold their edge well and they are cheap. I got a 10 inch cheffs knife for 30 bucks from them.
A Kitchenaid, good set of pots and pans (anodised aluminum from Calphelon is my choice), and a set of Henkle knives are a must.

As for the spices, I just bought bulk and put them into jars. Much much cheaper than buying name brand stuff, and imo better. Honestly, I bought the spices I needed for about 6 months and now i have an impressive spice collection. It just takes a while to build up.
Weber’s Kickin’ Chicken seasoning.
Weber’s Gourmet Hamburger seasoning.
McCormick Montreal Steak
McCormick Montreal Chicken
McCormick Hamburger seasoning
Mrs. Dash
Mrs. Dash spicy/hot, whatever it’s called
White pepper.
Dried red pepper flakes
Basil, but fresh is WAY better
Vanilla extract
how has no one said

good on everything

how has no one said

good on everything

what he said
Season salt
corn starch
bread crumbs
all purpose cooking oil
ice cube trays
rubber gloves
back up detergents
brown sugar
baking soda (good for dosing fires, cooking, fresheners)
cooking thermometers
cupcake paper cups
hand blender (one of those milk shake blender thingies)
lemon or lime
all purpose vinegar
a Spyderco Sharpmaker.

Keep all your knives sharp with that. It’s easy to use and is pretty widely recognized as the #2 home knife sharpener in a box. The #1 is a couple hundred bucks, and you’ll get your tomatoes sliced just fine with the sharpmaker.