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Your short-term vacation rental should provide guests with all the comforts of home, in a setting away from their everyday life. Some vacationers want to get away from everything, including cooking; while others rely on the ability to prepare their own meals to cut down on the cost of their trip. Whether it’s greeting the sunrise with a freshly brewed cup of coffee or enjoying a candlelight dinner, a well-stocked kitchen will delight your vacation rental guests and give them the flexibility to enjoy their time off as they see fit. Here are the Top 10 kitchen essentials for Airbnb rentals.

1. Coffee Maker and Tea Kettle

Travelers typically have a preference for either morning coffee or tea, so make sure you’ve got your bases covered. The coffee maker should hold 10-12 cups; be sure to provide filters, as well as enough coffee for at least the first pot if you really want to please your guests. The kettle can be stovetop or electric, and we recommend a small selection of tea bags as well.

2. Toaster

What goes great with that morning coffee? Toast. Toasters are convenient for a quick breakfast or snack, like frozen waffles. Toasted bread is also a great start to a delicious sandwich. Providing this appliance will make your guest’s meals easier to prepare and give them more time to enjoy their trip.

3. Knives and Cutting Boards

Sharp knives are important tools for any well-supplied kitchen, and especially for guests who enjoy cooking while on vacation. On the list of your kitchen essentials for your Airbnb rental, we recommend one large chef’s knife, two or three paring knives, a bread knife, and a butcher knife. Store them all in the same place, either a knife block or divided drawer so they can be accessed easily. Along with knives, appropriate cutting surfaces are a must. Keep one large and one medium plastic cutting board on the counter or in a drawer. Plastic boards are better than wood because they’re dishwasher safe and they help prevent foodborne illnesses.

4. Pots and Pans

One or two large pots, two medium saucepans, a large, and small sauté pan, a cookie sheet, and one cast-iron skillet are all your guests need to create simple and tasty meals while on vacation.

5. Microwave

People are so used to microwaves these days, that your renters will expect your kitchen to have one. If you have any rules about what can or can’t be warmed or cooked in it (such as fish), be sure to leave a note or sign on the microwave itself or include it in your house manual. Be sure to clean the microwave after renters check out.

6. Pot Holders and Dish Towels

Cooking without pot holders is a recipe for disaster, resulting in either burns or a big mess. Supply your guests will clean pot holders, oven mitts, and dish towels. Choosing ones that match the décor of your kitchen is also recommended as it adds to the overall thoughtfulness put into your Airbnb rental. Replace these items throughout the season whenever they look worn, faded or torn.

7. Dinnerware

Make sure you have two dinner plates, cereal/soup bowls, coffee mugs, glasses, and dessert plates for each person that your unit sleeps. This lets guests use one set while the other set is being washed. Extras like wine glasses are always appreciated!

8. Flatware

Provide two pieces of each kind of flatware per person. This includes the basic knives, forks, spoons, salad forks, and steak knives.

9. Serving and Cooking Utensils

Serious cooks appreciate a well-stocked utensil drawer. Yours should include several wooden spoons, a ladle, two or three serving spoons, one rubber scraper, a spatula, and salad tongs. If you have a grill, be sure to include designated grilling utensils.

10. Serving Bowls

Serving bowls are an absolute kitchen essential for Airbnb rentals because of their versatility. They can hold a variety of food items – salads, pasta, popcorn – that are enjoyed throughout the day, and can also be used for cooking and baking. Stock at least two, or a set of nesting bowls in three to four sizes.


There are so many items to include in a well-stocked kitchen, and we recommend you supply as many as you can. However, these ten are almost required to provide your guests with a functional kitchen they’ll be happy to be in. Be aware that guests can filter search results by the items you have in the amenities section of your rental listing, so make sure your kitchen actually has everything you say it does.

By: Michelle Giuliano

About Pillow

Pillow is solving short-term rentals for multifamily properties, allowing building owners and property managers to have control and transparency over short-term rentals while enabling their residents to rent their units short-term on Airbnb. Pillow is the official and exclusive multifamily housing partner for popular short-term rental listing platform Airbnb. Pillow takes a complicated, time-consuming process for multifamily building owners and created a solution that greatly benefits Multifamily operators and residents alike.

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