The Airbnb Hosts’ Kitchen Essentials Checklist
We’ve all been to a vacation rental or Airbnb and had to improvise with items in the kitchen when something valuable at that moment was missing. If you have a vacation rental or Airbnb that includes a kitchen, you’ll want to read on and download our FREE Airbnb Kitchen Checklist, so you don’t leave your valued guests in a predicament.
Our family was recently on vacation, and we found ourselves using a plate as a cutting board, the stock pot lid to drain our spaghetti noodles while losing a portion down the drain, and the only baking pan which was a casserole style pan as a pizza pan.
With our checklist and kitchen essential suggestions, you’ll be able to provide adequate supplies that will lead to a great experience for your vacationing guests so that they’ll want to return.
Vacation Rental Kitchen Checklist – What to Stock in Your Airbnb Kitchen
If you’re brand new at stocking your vacation rental kitchen or wanting to double check the supplies in your Airbnb kitchen, you’ll appreciate this quick Airbnb Kitchen Checklist that includes must-have Airbnb kitchen essentials.
Does an Airbnb Need a Kitchen?
The answer is no, one is not required for you to list your Airbnb for rental. However, a kitchen is one of the most used rooms in a home and having one will provide a better experience for your guests.
The Basic Essentials
These are the basics that we’d put on a list of must-haves for any vacation rental kitchen checklist.
Coffee and Tea Makings
Some folks consider coffee and tea a part of their basic day to day lifestyle. For these folks having a coffee maker or a space that you might call a coffee bar, even if it’s small, is a necessity. Supplying a few packets of coffee and tea to get them started is also a nice touch.
You can find some reasonably priced coffee machines and coffee and tea packets that fit the bill.
Sharp Knives and Cutting Board
Having some good sharp knives and a basic cutting board are useful in the day-to-day cooking preparation. Having a few serrated knives as well as paring knives or butcher knives that can be used on a provided cutting board are always helpful.
Skillets for the Stove
Cookware such as 2 skillets for the stovetop will allow your guests to prepare food in a home like environment. We recommend non-stick cooking surfaces that are economically priced, but have a nice appearance, and they function well.
If you’re hosting more than 6 people, you’ll want to consider having more than 2 pans.
Pots for the Stove
We recommend having at least 2 pots for Airbnb kitchen essentials to stock for your guests. One can be medium, and one can be larger. This will allow your guests to make a variety of items such as spaghetti which requires two pots or soups and other dishes.
If you’re hosting more than 6 people, you’ll want to consider having more than 2 pots.
Pans for the Oven
For many people, going on vacation means eating out, but for some they prefer to enjoy cooking their own food for pleasure or for budgetary reasons. Having pans for the oven such as a casserole pan and a round pizza pan will be helpful for those who choose to stay in for meals.
Oven, Stove, Mitts, and Trivet Mats
Oven Mitts and potholders are on our need to have checklist for Airbnb kitchen essentials. Your guests will find these helpful for getting food in and out of the oven and on and off the stovetop. And they’ll protect your surfaces from hot objects at the same time.
Oven mitts and trivet mats can be simple and straightforward.
Having a strainer that stands up on its own so that your guests can use both hands while cooking is a benefit. They don’t want to have to improvise while making their favorite fettuccini dish and watch their noodles go down the drain. Your supplying a proper strainer will help give them adequate tools to get the job done.
Ever stayed in an Airbnb kitchen that didn’t have mixing bowls and you had to mix your homemade cookies in saucepan instead? Even simple, stackable mixing bowls that don’t take up too much space are a basic need for any home cook or vacationing cook.
Be sure to include basic kitchen utensils for your Airbnb kitchen such as a spatula, large spoon, tongs, ladle, whisk, corkscrew, bottle opener, can opener, and grip pad to open stubborn jars.
A good rule of thumb for place settings in your vacation home kitchen is to have enough to cover the same number of people that you say your vacation home sleeps. For example, if your Airbnb is listed as sleeping 6 people, then you’ll want to have at least 6 place settings.
Cups and Dishes
We recommend using cups and dishes that are nice looking but aren’t too expensive. These should include plates, bowls, cups, and mugs that are microwave safe. Consider buying an economically priced, but nice-looking set, because sooner or later some will get broken.
Provide forks, knives, and spoons in the quantity that your vacation home sleeps. Consider adding a few serrated knives along with a butter knife to cut that steak or slice off a baguette.
Measuring Cups and Spoons
As you’re going down your Airbnb kitchen checklist, make sure you have a full set of measuring cups and spoons in your supply. No one wants to try to eyeball what a tablespoon of olive oil looks like.
Measuring cups and spoons allow for accurate measurements and successful outcomes. Plus, consider adding a larger Pyrex type measuring cup.
Fridge and Freezer
Make sure to leave the refrigerator and freezer spotless and squeaky clean on the inside for each new guest to arrive. As a bonus, you might even leave a few goodies like drinks or fruit.
If you don’t have a freezer, make sure it’s clear on your listing so that your guests won’t realize this when they’re standing at the kitchen counter watching their ice cream melt and wondering what to do with it.
Provide a fresh ice tray or two of ice if the provided freezer doesn’t automatically make ice.
Sink, Drying Rack, Sponge, and Plenty of Dish Soap
Provide plenty of dish soap and a sponge, along with a drying rack, especially if there is no dishwasher. And even if there is a dishwasher, we’d still suggest these on our Airbnb kitchen checklist. It allows those who prefer to hand wash not have to wait for dishes to cycle through the dishwasher.
Trash Can & Recycling
Have a well labeled trash can with extra bags and recycling containers and tell your guests where they’re located. Does the trash go by the garage? At the curbside? In the parking area? There’s nothing more awkward than not knowing where to put the trash when it gets full.
Great Additions To Essentials
We’ve labeled the Airbnb kitchen essentials in this section as great additions to have. They’re nice to have, and having them will provide a better vacation experience for your guests.
Wine Glasses and Tumblers
We recommend providing wine glasses and tumblers, especially if your place is advertised as a romantic getaway. But choose tumblers and wine glasses that perhaps don’t have stems, are not too expensive or sentimental, because they’ll eventually break.
Hand Towels & Paper Towels
Hand towels and paper towels, along with cleaning spray, is a nice touch for keeping surfaces clean. Consider providing cleaning spray that is natural and chemical free for those who are allergic to strong smells.
Salt and Pepper
People don’t travel with salt, sugar, and pepper in hand, but most will use them to make food taste better. Consider supplying salt and pepper that have the grinder top and allow the contents to stay fresh longer.
Olive Oil and Vinegar
Like salt and pepper, olive oil and vinegar are staples for cooking and folks don’t usually travel with their own supply. Having a small supply provided to each Airbnb guest, if they choose to use it, is a nice gesture.
Many people begin their day with a slice of toast, English muffin, or bagel. Having a toaster available for use is an inexpensive solution that will fulfill the desire for morning or any time toast for your guests.
Microwaves can come in large or small sizes and can range in price according to wall mounts or countertop versions. Supplying a microwave will come in handy for your guests in reheating leftovers and making microwave popcorn and other cooking options. It’s a nice added touch.
Blenders are useful for making things like smoothies and other delicious meals. You don’t have to break the bank and supply a top-of-the-line blender for your vacation rental, knowing that some people will take good care of it and others just won’t. Consider a simple and economical one.
A lot of people like to make crockpot meals when they’re on vacation because they can put their food in the crockpot in the morning and then go sightseeing or do activities during the day and come back to a prepared meal.
Having a crockpot would be what we’d consider one of the optional small appliances that is right sized to the number of guests that can sleep in your Airbnb, that comes with a strong recommendation.
For the Ultimate Vacation Experience
This section we’ve labeled best kept secrets for the ultimate vacation experience as these are things that we recommend including in an Airbnb Kitchen Checklist: The Ultimate List For Guest Cooking Essentials.
These might not be considered basic essentials, but they’re the things that will add the touch to set a good first impression and will take your guests from a good to great experience.
A Welcome Snack
Using a simple welcome snack such as a few packages of nuts, granola bars, raisins or fresh fruit will get a stay off on the right foot. Consider adding drinks such as sparkling juice or flavored water to go along with the snack.
Space for Groceries
Consider leaving cabinet space, installing a shelf, or having a few baskets, or a fruit stand available as a place for your guests to store their groceries. Check out vertical storage by Ikea as an option.
Our family of 7 recently stayed at a vacation rental for 3 weeks and there was no place to put groceries and we planned to make most of our meals. Let’s just say the space was cramped. Your guests will appreciate even a small space to store their groceries.
Clear Counter Space
Consider having a clear counter space for food preparation. You might be thinking my kitchen is dinky and there’s no way I’m going to have a clean counter space. You might be surprised when you get creative or buy a small rolling cart that can be used as an island. Your guests will appreciate clear counter space for food preparation.
Food Storage Supplies
Consider adding food storage containers with matching lids for leftovers, as well as food wraps like aluminum foil, plastic wrap, food storage baggies that zip, chip clips can seem like a luxury, and a wine stopper will be appreciated. Because after the food preparation is done, leftovers will need to be stored.
No matter how much your guests scrape their plates before adding them to the dishwasher, having some pieces of food hit the sink seems inevitable. If installing a garbage disposal is out of the question, you’ll want to add a drain strainer to trap food so that it doesn’t end up down the drain creating a nasty clog in your pipes.
Including a starter kit of spices helps to make your guests feel welcome. It doesn’t have to be that you include a new kit for each guest, but rather just keep one there from guest to guest. If including spices, our vote would be for garlic, cinnamon, chili powder, and something with a kick like red pepper flakes.
Higher end vacation rentals tend to be ones that have baking supplies that include kitchen essentials like flour, sugar, baking powder, an inexpensive electric mixer, loaf pan, cake pan, parchment paper, and non-stick spray like Pam.
Not many people like to do dishes, let alone do the dishes while they’re on vacation. Having a dishwasher available can help to ease the pain. And if you’re thinking this kitchen is so tiny, I’d never fit a dishwasher in here, you might want to check out these nifty slim dishwashers that only take up a small amount of space.
Other kitchen accessories for cooking that your guests will find useful include, kitchen scissors, grater, whisk, vegetable peeler, pizza cutter, meat thermometer, ice cream scoop, and a cradle for keeping a messy spoon on the stovetop.
Seating For Guests
Make sure you have enough seating for guests. This should be the same number of guests you have listed your vacation rental to sleep. For example, if your vacation rental sleeps 6, you should have seating for at least 6. This doesn’t have to be all around one big table, for example some could be at a dining table, and some could be on a porch.
Airbnb Kitchen Rules Sign
Posting your Airbnb kitchen requirements in a rules sign lets your guests know how little or how much they’re required to do and exactly what’s expected of them as far as cleanup is concerned. We’ve even created one for you as a FREE download you can use.
Because you don’t want to be left with a mess and your guests don’t want to be charged with a fee they didn’t expect for not leaving the kitchen in tip top shape.
Do I really need a kitchen rules sign?
You don’t have to post a kitchen rules sign, but we recommend it so that everything is laid out clearly. In fact, we think it’s such a good idea that we created a FREE one for you to download or for you to use as a starting point.
For safety reasons, we recommend mounting a kitchen fire extinguisher like this one in a visible and easy to reach location just in case someone needs it.
Good luck getting all the essentials for the kitchen in your Airbnb vacation rental! Feel free to leave a comment below if you have any questions or need guidance.
FREE Airbnb Kitchen Checklist
Be sure to Download our FREE Airbnb Kitchen Checklist Printable to use for your vacation home rental. And you think of other items that you think are valuable to have in a kitchen vacation rental, just drop us a message in the comments box below.