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.

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 8

Mobile Global Cuisine

With global street food taking over Kelsey visits Danny of Cemitas who is turning out cemitas packed with layers of flavor. Then Kelsey visits some epic sandwich makers who are bringing the amazing flavors of Bombay to the masses. Back in her kitchen Kelsey continues to go "global" when she makes an Italian porchetta sandwich and then a classic favorite from Trinidad, curried chickpea doubles.

Saturday
Apr 1
7:30am | 6:30c
Season 5, Episode 10

Hot and Cool Desserts

When it comes to dessert the most popular trend right now are "hot" cool desserts. Kelsey visits Max and Mina's whose ice cream is anything but vanilla when she helps them create a new ice cream flavor: salt and vinegar potato chip ice cream. Then she heads over to Just Sweet Cafe who is turning shaved ices upside down with their Asian inspired flavors. Back in her kitchen Kelsey creates her own innovative desserts by making a curried butternut squash ice cream and then a dessert sushi topped with fresh fruit.

Saturday
Apr 1
8:30am | 7:30c
Season 5, Episode 11

Dinner and a Movie

The latest trend in movie theatres are their gourmet concession stands! Kelsey heads to Nitehawk Cinema where they are taking a gourmet approach to dinner and a movie by serving up shrimp sofrito and chocolate cigars. Kelsey then visits Jen and Jeff at Pipcorn who are reinventing popcorn by making their popular herb spiced popcorn. Inspired Kelsey heads back to her kitchen to make her version of gourmet bites. On the menu: duck and dogs on a blanket, s'mores granola bites and a cherry lime vanilla glacier.

Saturday
Apr 1
9am | 8c
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 2, Episode 10

Easy Summer Cooking

Kelsey uses one of her favorite essential tools, the slow cooker, to make some surprising, delicious and versatile dishes. Her spicy and savory pork recipe comes out of the slow cooker fork tender and perfect for any number of dishes. To start, she'll wrap the Pork in a Warm Tortilla and add pickled red onions, pineapple and cilantro and serve it with a side of Black Bean Salad With Mango and Lime. Then, for a twist, she'll make a Thai inspired Pork Summer Roll, filled with mint, cilantro and basil and serve it with rich and creamy Peanut Dipping Sauce. And for dessert, she'll show you how to make a creamy and wonderful Tres Leches Bread Pudding.

Saturday
Jul 1
7:30am | 6:30c
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 5, Episode 10

Hot and Cool Desserts

When it comes to dessert the most popular trend right now are "hot" cool desserts. Kelsey visits Max and Mina's whose ice cream is anything but vanilla when she helps them create a new ice cream flavor: salt and vinegar potato chip ice cream. Then she heads over to Just Sweet Cafe who is turning shaved ices upside down with their Asian inspired flavors. Back in her kitchen Kelsey creates her own innovative desserts by making a curried butternut squash ice cream and then a dessert sushi topped with fresh fruit.

Monday
Aug 7
8:30am | 7:30c
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
Aug 7
9:30am | 8:30c
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 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 1, Episode 13

Food Gifts

Kelsey's ultimate gift is one from the heart -- and the kitchen. Kelsey crafts some food gifts you can share with your friends and family, all guaranteed to look and taste delicious: Cherry Pie in a Jar, Vanilla Almonds, Vanilla Sugar and homemade Salted Caramel Sauce complete with a recipe for Caramelitas. Spread some good cheer with delights from your kitchen.

Saturday
Dec 16
7:30am | 6:30c

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

Pressed Picnic Sandwich with Roasted Red Pepper and Pepperoncini Spread

Spicy Smoked Sweet Potato Salad

Grilled Picnic Corn

Italian Porchetta Sandwich

Quick Pickles

Sesame Ginger Chicken

Tangy Maple Baked Beans with Applewood Smoked Bacon

Black Bean Salad with Mango, Cilantro and Lime

Watermelon, Ginger and Lime Granita

Marinated Antipasti Bruschetta

Herby Potato Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Green Goddess Crab Tapas

Every Herb Pesto

Quick Coleslaw

Chicken Cacciatore

Charred Corn Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Roasted Beet Salad

Chopped Caesar Salad Pizza

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

Roasted Vegetables

Tres Leches Bread Pudding

Charred Corn Salad with Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

Thai Deviled Eggs

Shrimp Lo Mein

Sopes with Shredded Beef

Bacon, Cheddar and Chive Biscuits

Homemade French Baguettes

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