Kelsey Nixon's got spunk, she's got sass, but most importantly, she's got what you so desperately need in the kitchen: The Essentials. From "Roasting" to "Sauce-Making" to "Quick Breads," Kelsey shows you — the DIY home cook — the essential techniques, equipment and foolproof tips you need to be the boss of your own kitchen. Kelsey is all about using the basics to create dishes that are anything but ordinary.

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Kitchen Essentials

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Season 4, Episode 10

Tacos

If you love tacos like Kelsey, you will die for the tacos at Rockaway Taco. Andrew Day Field's pristine ingredients and unique approach to building the perfect taco has New Yorkers trekking two hours to this seaside mecca on Rockaway Beach. Kelsey learns how to make an authentic Mexican taco, then heads back to her kitchen to start her own version of taco heaven. She makes three of her favorites: Grilled Shrimp Tacos With Mango Salsa, yummy Breakfast Tacos With Sausage and Egg, and a Chile Braised Lamb Taco.

Monday
Jan 16
7am | 6c
Season 5, Episode 12

A Salt of the Senses

From sweet to savory salt is used as an ingredient in almost everything ... but Kelsey reveals the latest trend in using salt as a cooking tool! Kelsey visits David Burke who is using Himalayan salt blocks to cook almost everything from appetizer to dessert. She then tries her hand at using a Himalayan salt block to make a scallop crudo and a delicious cashew nut brittle. Kelsey then stops by an N.Y. rooftop farm that harvests the unexpected, salt! Back in her kitchen Kelsey makes a mouthwatering salt crusted pork roast.

Monday
Jan 16
8:30am | 7:30c
Season 5, Episode 13

The Big First

The newest trend in entertaining is all about mix and mingle foods and easy to make party bites. Kelsey is celebrating the big first ... her son Ollie's first birthday but these are perfect party foods for any big first occasion. First up, mouthwatering Sopes with shredded beef. Then, it's a Charred Corn Salad with a creamy tomatillo dressing. Then for a sure fire crowd pleaser it's a Dos Leches Strawberry cake ... for a sweet ending to any celebration!

Monday
Jan 16
9am | 8c
Season 5, Episode 7

Amazing Mashups

With food mashups being the latest culinary trend Kelsey heads to Kimchi Taco Truck to visit the mashup master, Phil Lee. Kelsey then makes her own version of a culinary mashup by serving up a Japanese risotto, the perfect fusion of Japanese and Italian flavors. Next on the menu are apple pie and meatball sub egg rolls. Then it's a classic appetizer with a multicultural twist: Thai deviled eggs and beet pickled Hungarian deviled eggs.

Saturday
Apr 1
7am | 6c
Season 5, Episode 9

Fiery Foods

With the "hottest" food trend right now being hot sauce Kelsey heads to the first annual Hot Sauce Expo where hot sauce is being added to all savory and sweet foods, including the unexpected. Next up Kelsey visits JoJo Collins who truly turns up the heat on her homemade Sriracha. Kelsey then gets started on her own hot sauce menu when she makes: a Fresno pepper hot sauce, a spicy kale Caesar salad and a spicy roasted chicken with a hot sauce compound butter.

Saturday
Apr 1
8am | 7c
Season 5, Episode 6

Jamaican

No need to hop on a plane to visit Jamaica to discover the amazing flavors of the Caribbean! Kelsey visits Melvin at Melvin's Juice Box who is adding the mouth watering tropical flavors of Jamaica to his juices. Kelsey heads back to her kitchen inspired to make fried fish with carrot escovitch using some of the same Jamaican flavors as Melvin. Kelsey then meets the queen of jerk cooking, Suzanne at Miss Lily's to try her hand at the staple technique of Jamaican cuisine. Back in her kitchen Kelsey makes grilled lobster tails with jerk sauce and coconut rice.

Monday
Apr 10
7am | 6c
Season 5, Episode 5

Snack Attack

Wish you could make your favorite snack at home? Kelsey shows us with a little inspiration and essential ingredients, anything is possible! After visiting S'mores Bakery and seeing how they turned an American favorite snack -- the s'mores -- upside down by adding unexpected flavors like orange-cardamom, espresso and lavender, she heads back to her kitchen to make her version of one of her all time favorite snacks -- a microwave chocolate cake with peanut butter cream. Kelsey then heads to Kings County Jerky to see how they reinvented the traditional jerky by making a grass fed jerky with flavors like Korean BBQ and Mole. Kelsey makes her version of dried leather by serving up homemade fruit leather. And last, Kelsey makes a "snack attack" of fried chickpeas with parmesan, lemon and almonds.

Monday
Apr 10
9:30am | 8:30c
Season 5, Episode 9

Fiery Foods

With the "hottest" food trend right now being hot sauce Kelsey heads to the first annual Hot Sauce Expo where hot sauce is being added to all savory and sweet foods, including the unexpected. Next up Kelsey visits JoJo Collins who truly turns up the heat on her homemade Sriracha. Kelsey then gets started on her own hot sauce menu when she makes: a Fresno pepper hot sauce, a spicy kale Caesar salad and a spicy roasted chicken with a hot sauce compound butter.

Monday
Aug 7
8am | 7c
Season 4, Episode 8

Game Day Gourmet

Why make the same game day food year in and year out, when you can create something new? Kelsey visits Marc Matyas of the New York City's Nolita House for a little game day gourmet inspiration. Marc has been experimenting with game day classics. Try spinach artichoke dip wrapped in a spring roll then deep fried -- or bite size balls of mac n' cheese. Fueled by Marc's unique ideas and techniques, Kelsey creates her own game day dishes the gourmet way with Spicy Crab Cake Poppers, Buffalo Chicken Lollies with blue cheese dip, and broiled Sweet Pepper Poppers with goat cheese.

Saturday
Oct 14
7:30am | 6:30c
Season 3, Episode 10

Chocolate

Kelsey's essential tips for working with chocolate! Yes, you can have chocolate in your savory dishes, like in Kelsey's Pan Seared Scallops With a Tomato and White Chocolate Beurre Blanc. For a decadent dessert, she makes Chocolate Pasta With Chocolate Hazelnut Cream Sauce, White Chocolate Shavings and Fresh Berries.

Saturday
Oct 14
9am | 8c
Season 3, Episode 6

Seafood

Kelsey shares her essential tips for cooking seafood. Recipes: Roasted Whole Black Sea Bass With Herbed Israeli Couscous, Crispy Skin Arctic Char With Butter Braised Cabbage and Oyster Chowder.

Tuesday
Dec 5
7am | 6c
Season 2, Episode 12

Hooray for the Holidays

Entertaining friends and family during the holidays doesn't always mean baking a whole turkey, ham, or cake: bite size savory and sweet treats are quick ways to get the taste of the holidays to your guests in no time. Kelsey gets all of her favorite flavors of a turkey meal into one bite with Potato Latkes topped with Smoked Turkey Leg and Sweet Kumquat Chutney. Her favorite stuffing recipe packs big flavor into little Crispy Prosciutto cups. For dessert, a twist on a classic: Gingerbread Cake Truffles mixed with lemon ginger icing and topped with melted white chocolate and toasted pistachios. Kelsey is making entertaining for the holidays that much easier with some amazing bite size morsels.

Tuesday
Dec 5
8:30am | 7:30c
Season 4, Episode 3

New NY Favorite

Nothing says "New York City" like a warm bagel slathered with a thick layer of cream cheese. But one Brooklyn Bagel Maker, Scot Rossilo of the Bagel Store, isn't satisfied with the average bagel. He's taking them to the next level by creating bagels and cream cheese with any flavor your heart desires. Back in her kitchen, Kelsey puts a spin on this New York favorite with a berry bagel puff. Next, she serves up a caramelized onion and cheese bagel-swirl topped with a cream cheese and chive drizzle.

Saturday
Dec 16
7am | 6c

Show Extras

Cooking Fundamentals

Free Culinary School

Master your chopping, baking and everyday dinner-making skills with simple kitchen tips.
Cook Like a Pro

More Cooking Essentials

Videos: Kitchen Basics

Save money on culinary school with our easy tips on everything from chopping veggies to frosting a cake.

Become a Cooking Pro

Video: Essential Knives 15 Videos

Kelsey shows you why a good core set of kitchen knives are a chef's most essential tools.

See the Four Knives You Need

Video: Perfect Pie Crusts

Watch Kelsey blind you with the science of flaky, buttery crusts.
Become a Pie Pro

More Kitchen Tips

Our original web series Good to Know has more fun how-to's and DIY tips to simplify and inspire your cooking.
Watch Good to Know.

Most Popular Recipes

All Kelsey's Essentials Recipes

Black Bean Salad with Mango, Cilantro and Lime

Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Seared Duck Breast with Fig Sauce

Sweet and Sour Barbequed Picnic Drums

Sesame Ginger Chicken

Quick Coleslaw

Cuban Sandwich

5-Spice Pork Stir Fry with Mandarin Oranges

S'mores Pudding Pie

Dessert Sushi

Grilled Hamachi Collar with Ponzu Dipping Sauce

Cumin Scented Oven-Baked Ribs with Sweet and Tangy BBQ Sauce

Shoestring Fries with Truffle Aioli

Charred Corn Salad with Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

Roasted Stone Fruit

Asian Chicken Burger with Spicy Lemongrass Mayo and Pickled Asian Slaw

Salted Caramel Sauce

Charred Corn Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Skillet Bacon Mac and Cheese

Homemade Pomegranate-Lime Lollipops

Chocolate Pasta with Chocolate Hazelnut Cream Sauce, White Chocolate Shavings and Fresh Berries

Sesame-Ginger Salmon en Papillote

Pan Seared Scallops with a Tomato and White Chocolate Beurre Blanc

Dos Leches Strawberry Cake

Microwave Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Cream

Rustic Pies/Galettes

Beet-Pickled Hungarian Deviled Eggs

About the Host

Kelsey Nixon

Kelsey Nixon began teaching others to cook in college when she created her own cooking show, Kelsey's Kitchen, emphasizing fast, fun and affordable meals.

More from Kelsey Nixon