Kristen Suzanne is an accomplished Raw food chef and former competitive bodybuilder. Through radio, television, books, classes, and her blog and email newsletter, Chef Kristen Suzanne helps people live life to the fullest with the healthiest cuisine in the world.

Kristen is based in Scottsdale, AZ, and offers the following services:

Author of Raw food recipe and lifestyle books

Media spokesperson and Raw food advocate

Public and private demonstrations and lectures

Raw Food Store

If You See It Here, I've Used It Personally and I Recommend It

Raw Food Kitchen Essential Tools

In order of importance, here is a short, simple list of items that, once you own them, will make an absolutely great, complete Raw kitchen. It's easier than you'd think:

Chef's Knife
My Most Important Raw Food Tool!

MAC Santoku Knife - The number one tool you need in your Raw food kitchen is a high-quality, professional chef's knife, because you'll do a lot of chopping. If you don't already own a real chef's knife, consider it a rite of passage. It's a great symbolic step toward fully embracing Raw food, and you'll be having fun every time you use your beautiful knife, which makes you much more likely to succeed. This exact model is the one I love and use every day. A great investment... with care, it will last your whole life.

Knife Sharpener - It's very important to keep your knife sharp, not just for good cuts, but because a dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp knife. This is the one I use with my MAC knife. (Don't use this on ceramic knives.)

Kyocera 5-inch Slicing Knife
My "Other" Knife - Super Sharp!

Ceramic knives are a beautiful addition to your Raw food kitchen. They are EXTREMELY sharp, which makes them perfect for fruits, greens, and herbs. These rarely needing sharpening (can go months to years without sharpening). I love this!

For a bit more money, check out Kyocera's top-of-the-line Kyotop Damascus series ceramic knives with fancy wooden handles (in several sizes). Avoid the 8" chef knife for daily chopping; use the Mac Knife above instead, as you'll need a workhorse and ceramic knife blades are more fragile than metal.

Required Equipment: A High-Speed Blender
There are really only two brands to choose from, as almost all chefs use either Vitamix or Blendtec. I own them both but I always reach for my Vitamix and would only buy Vitamix going forward.

Vita-Mix 5200 Blender - I love the Vita-Mix 5200, which has completely won my heart. I am a huge fan of this impressive piece of machinery. For starters, the Vita-Mix 5200 model comes with a container that is BPA-Free, with improved sound dampening so it's not crazy loud, even though it comes with a powerful 2 peak HP motor. It also has a fantastic, easy to use lid and pour spout. This bad boy pulverises berries - skins, SEEDS, and all - that ROCKS, because those seeds are loaded with nutrition that would normally get passed right through your body!

With this amazing kitchen appliance, you can have healthy whole food meals that are quick, EASY and delicious! A whole food diet is the key to a long and healthy life. This is easily accomplished by eating terrific-tasting, nutrient-rich whole food meals made in the Vita-Mix machine. The Vita-Mix 5200 can be used to make all kinds of Raw vegan foods including smoothies, juice, ice cream, purees, soup, nut butter, sauce, mousse, pesto, salsa, slaw, nut/seed flours, sun-dried tomato powder, flax/chia meal, and more.

Yes, it's true that you can do many of those things with the Blendtec, but the Vita-Mix 5200 Model comes with a whopping 7-year warranty (base and container)! I'm so glad I have a Vita-Mix 5200. Start your 30-day no-risk in-home trial today and you'll receive FREE Standard Ground Shipping!

Required Equipment: A Good Food Processor

KitchenAid 12-Cup Food Processor - This is perfect for making desserts, pates, nut butters, and so much more. For hundreds of recipes, see my Raw Food recipe books.

Essential for Max Health: A Great Juicer

Green Star 3000 Deluxe Juicer / Juice Extractor - This Bad Boy isn't cheap, but it's life-changing. Nothing - and I mean nothing - beats juicing. Wanna go hardcore? This is it! Like the vegan version of being a vampire, you feel absolutely super-human when you drink down pure "plant blood." The juice you make with this can be stored in an airtight container for a couple of days without much oxidation (perfect for people who can only make juice once a day or less). This juicer also squeezes out every bit of juice, leaving you with very dry pulp. For a notch down on the intensity (and cost) scale, pick up a great blender and start with daily smoothies. (If you've not had green juice, try some at your local health food store before deciding which gear to invest in.) Juices and smoothies both go great with my Raw recipe ebook, EASY Raw Smoothies, Juices, Elixirs & Drinks.

Breville Fountain Juicer - This is a great juicer because it's lightning fast and SUPER EASY to clean. It's less expensive than the Hurom and Green Star, but because it's centrifugal, unlike the Green Star and Hurom (above), you should drink the juice within 15 minutes of making it to prevent oxidation and nutrient loss. This is a great juicer for people who plan to do a lot of daily juicing, don't want to spend a lot to get started, and want it to be fast and efficient - just be sure to drink right after juicing.

Hurom Juicer - YEAH BABY! This is my favorite juicer. It's way easy (and fast) to use, quick to clean, and juices with a single auger, making it a slow juicer so the juice stays fresh longer. I know, oxymoron, right? Slow juicer that juices fast? But, it does! The size of the auger makes juice fast by moving a lot through it, but at a slow speed.

JUICER UPDATE: I Have a New Favorite - Speed Plus Large Volume

Breville Ikon 900-Watt Variable Speed - As many of you know, I recently had a baby. With my hands now full of baby 24/7, this shifted my juicing needs to something Mama-friendly, allowing me to make large batches FAST. All Brevilles are fast, but this new bad boy was perfect with its larger capacity. Read my review and the whole story of my switch here.


A Few More Big Things
Technically, none of the following are required for going Raw, but with just a few extra pieces of equipment, you will save so much time and expand your capabilities that they will make your Raw food prep easier, more fun, more practical to do every day, and generally make life much more enjoyable.


Sedona Food Dehydrator - Dehydrating your Raw food is a great addition to your Raw lifestyle because it adds tremendous variety to your diet as well as shelf life to some of your food. Now you can have crunchy foods, warm foods, marinated foods with a texture reminiscent of cooked food, and foods that can last a long time in your refrigerator or freezer.

Learn everything you need to about using this magnificent piece of kitchen equipment, along with some of the best dehydrating recipes ever, with my book, Kristen Suzanne's EASY Raw Vegan Dehydrating.

If you get a dehydrator, be sure to pick up a large offset spatula, perfect for spreading the mixtures for making granola, crackers, and breads.


FoodSaver V2440 Advanced Design - Truly one of the best additions to my Raw food kitchen ever. With a FoodSaver you can add shelf life to your Raw goodies, saving you time, and helping reduce waste. After you've bought your FoodSaver, pick up one of these jar attachments to use with your glass mason jars (below).

Kitchen Scale

My Weigh 7000-Gram Stainless-Steel Kitchen Food Scale - A kitchen scale is one of those simple things most people don't have but then you wonder how you ever got by without it. This is my favorite scale. Easy to keep clean, easy to use, and reasonably priced.



The Fancy Option

Benriner Turning Slicer - Don't let the 1950's hospital mint green color fool you; the Benriner is a favorite gadget among Raw Foodies due to its four blades and ability to make zucchini and other "pastas" (thinly sliced veggies) in no time.

The Simpler Option

Saladacco Spiral Slicer - With only two blades and a smallish container, the Saladacco is not quite as versatile as the Benriner, but it costs less and is plenty to get you started with thinly sliced veggie "noodles."



The OK Option

Kyocera Mandolin Slicer - This is a hand-held mandolin (vegetable slicer) that is great for making veggie chips, rawvioli noodes and more. It's easy to use and great for travel.

The Better Option

Matfer Mandoline 2000s - A bigger and better mandoline than the Kyocera because it helps ensure even slices as well as offering more variety of different cuts you can do. This is the mandolin I use in my Raw kitchen. I love it!

Essential for Your Family's Health: A Good Water Filter

Multi-Pure Undercounter Water Filter - This is the absolute smartest, most cost-effective, environmentally sound way to drink and prep food with delicious, pure, toxin-free water. Bottled water is ecological insanity and tap water is suspect even in the best of cases because municipalities don't test for many dangerous contaminants such as hormones or prescription drugs that get into the water supply via urine. And even if your city tests well against the standard toxins, anything can happen in the pipes between them and you. Filtering at the faucet is the ONLY way to go! I purchased one of these and love it so much - the water tastes fantastic! - that I can't believe I didn't do this years ago! The stainless housing lasts 25 years, and $60 filter cartridge (1 included) needs to be replaced every 750 gallons, or about 12-18 months. I absolutely love this product!


Jars. LOTS of Jars...

Quart Sized

Wide-Mouth Glass Mason Jar 1 Quart, Case of 12 - I store everything I can in glass jars to keep my food the healthiest possible. (Plastic containers can leach chemicals into your food to which I say, "No thanks!") These are perfect for storing Raw soups, smoothies, juices, nuts, seeds, granola, crackers and more. In fact, I use them for my drinking glasses. Yep, I drink my fresh organic smoothies right out of them.

Pint Sized

Wide-Mouth Glass Mason Jar 1 Pint, Case of 12 - For the same reasons above, make sure you use glass mason jars to store your food. This size is perfect for single servings of your Raw food. For the ultimate in freshness and storage of your Raw food, make sure you get a FoodSaver with the mason jar attachment tool. Your life will be easier when you do. I promise!


Fun and Helpful Odds n' Ends
These are simple or clever items that will make your Raw lifestyle much more fun!

The Scoopers! - Whoever invented these has earned a special place in heaven because these amazing things ooze pure magic. If you've been to any of my classes, you know that these are my best friends in the kitchen (after my mom, of course!). They make scooping out avocado and Young Thai coconut meat effortless, enjoyable even, as well as many others such as melons, tomatoes... even kiwi! (Don't you just hate peeling kiwi? Now it's a snap.) These scoopers amaze everybody who tries them and they make fantastic gifts, so get a couple of sets while you're here.

Offset Spatulas (multiple sizes) - Definitely one of my best friends in the kitchen. This little guy makes spreading cakes, mousse, cheese, etc. super easy. Get a couple of them in different sizes (4.25" and 7.63"). The larger size is his size is perfect for spreading the mixture for granolas, crackers, and bread mixture for dehydrating.

Springform Pan - Ideal for making Raw cakes, pies and even lasagna.

Tribest Personal Travel Blender (BPA Free) - Want a fresh green smoothie on your next trip? Need a great, but small blender for your office? This is hands down the best tool for travel or work. You have to get one of these! Powerful, easy to clean, and portable. What more could you ask for?

(Pro tip: Great for small babyfood batches!)

Tribest Automatic Sprouter - Take your health to the next level by consuming uber healthy, nutrient packed sprouts. With this effortless system, sprouting has never been so easy!

Miracle 5 Liter Harsch Fermenting Crock Pot - Raw, organic, unpasteurized sauerkraut (and other fermented veggies) is a staple in my family's diet. The benefits are numerous: Friendly bacteria, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes! The problem is that it can get pretty expensive to buy sauerkraut from the store on a regular basis. That's why I invested in this awesome fermenting pot (this link is for the 5-liter, but I actually have the 7.5 liter, which is quite large). Now I can make my own homemade Raw, organic, unpasteurized sauerkraut and fermented vegetables for much cheaper. And, it's FUN and totally bad-ass!

Helpful book: Making Sauerkraut and Pickled Vegetables at Home: Creative Recipes for Lactic Fermented Food to Improve Your Health - Here is a great little book that I used for learning all about the benefits of raw, organic, unpasteurized sauerkraut and other fermented vegetables. It gave me great confidence when I was just starting out. It has some delicious recipes, too! (Even though there is mention of whey in the book, I make my sauerkraut with just organic cabbage and Himalayan crystal salt.)

AeroGarden Classic 7-Pod with Herb Seed Kit - Nothing beats the freshness of just-picked herbs! Have you ever wanted your own little garden, but didn't have a yard or a green thumb? This amazing piece of equipment completely automates the growing of your own lettuce, herbs, tomatoes, and more right inside your home. It's straightforward, uncomplicated and requires very little effort on your part. Warning: The AeroGarden operates using a bright fluorsecent grow light part of the time, so don't put it anywhere that you're trying to sleep.

AeroGarden International Basil Seed Kit - My favorite seed kit for my AeroGarden is the International Basil, more than the lettuce or mixed herbs. Not only does the basil seem to grow the heartiest, but I just LOOOOVE fresh basil!.