The Prep Station

In stock
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An organized, tidy food prep station creates a foundation for safe, clean, and successful cooking.

In our test kitchen, “setting up your board” means setting up your cooking station before you begin to prep and cook. Setting up your board at home is just as important.

OXO Good Grips Carving and Cutting Board


Reviewed June 2020

We compared cutting performance, durability, and user­-friendliness. We diced onions, chopped chipotle chiles, minced herbs, and hacked up chicken thighs. Each board ran through high­-heat commercial dishwashers 40 to 75 times and suffered a fall from the counter after testing.

Dimensions: 14.5" x 21"
Weight: 3.85 lbs
Material: Plastic
Clean: Dishwasher Safe
The OXO Good Grips Carving and Cutting Board with two tomatoes on itThe OXO Good Grips Carving and Cutting Board with two tomatoes on it

Anchor Hocking Custard Cups

Set of Four

Reviewed January 2016

We compared seven widely available sets of prep bowls, filling and emptying them with a variety of different foods. We noted accumulated stains and odors and the bowls’ condition after repeated washing. A nudge off the counter helped assess durability. Microwave­-safe and/or oven-safe bowls earned extra points.

Dimensions: 3.75" x 2"
Capacity: 6 oz
Use: Microwave Safe
Clean: Dishwasher Safe
The Anchor Hocking Custard CupsThe Anchor Hocking Custard Cups

New Designs Ripple Kitchen Towel


Reviewed June 2014

We quantified absorbency by dangling an inch of each towel into a tub of water for 15 minutes, weighing the towels before and after. We also used the towels to wring water from frozen spinach, hold hot baking dishes, and dry slim, delicate champagne flutes. A set of 26 full laundry cycles mimicked 6 months of weekly washing and helped us test long­term durability.

Quantity Included: 1
Material: Cotton, Ribbed Weave
Size: 25" x 18.25"
A New Designs Ripple Kitchen Towel in redA New Designs Ripple Kitchen Towel in red

Dexas Heavy Duty Grippmats, Set of 4

SIZE ★★★

Reviewed March 2018

These mats were some of the thickest and sturdiest in our lineup but were still flexible enough to funnel food into skillets and bowls. Both sides are textured, which kept the mats in place on the counter and prevented foods from sliding across the cutting surface. The textured surface also prevented deep knife marks and concealed cosmetic nicks.

Dimensions: 11" x 15" x 0.81mm
Material: Polypropylene
Clean: Dishwasher Safe
A set of four Dexas Heavy Duty GrippmatsA set of four Dexas Heavy Duty Grippmats

OXO Carving and Cutting Board

Anchor Hocking Custard Cups, Set of 4
Now Designs Kitchen Towel
Dexas Grippmats, Set of 4
Item Number: ATKPREP
Item Weight: 8.05 pounds

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Setting Up Your Cutting Station

Someone using rubber bands to anchor their cutting boardSomeone using rubber bands to anchor their cutting board

Anchor Your Board

A cutting board that slides all over the counter is not only annoying, it is also unsafe. If your cutting board doesn’t have nonslip grips on the bottom (our Best Buy does), place either a square of wet paper towel or a small piece of shelf liner between the counter and the cutting board.

An overhead shot of many prep bowls filled with ingredientsAn overhead shot of many prep bowls filled with ingredients

Organize Your Prep

Organizing your prepped ingredients into little bowls isn’t just for TV chefs; it’s a great idea for home cooks, too. This setup makes it easy to grab an ingredient and add it to a hot pan at just the right moment.