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The strainer is undoubtedly one of the most important kitchen essentials. Strainers come in handy when you're working with fruit, vegetables, pasta, and more. But did you know that there are actually several different kinds of kitchen strainers that all serve unique purposes? Thus, it's important to know what kind of strainer to use for different kitchen tasks.
In this guide, we'll go over 11 different types of kitchen strainers to help you better understand the differences between these kitchen essentials and how to best employ them in your kitchen. We'll also give you some product links so you can stock your kitchen with these handy accessories. Without further ado, let's get into it!
1. Two Handle Colander
The two handle colander is the most basic kind of strainer found in most kitchens. This type of colander is typically fairly large, so it can strain a substantial amount of food at one time. The only drawback of this kind of colander is that, due to its size, it takes up quite a bit of space.
This type of colander also has a base, providing you with a hands-free option. Whether you're washing veggies, straining pasta, or anything in between, the two handle colander is an excellent option.
LiveFresh Stainless Steel Micro-Perforated 5-Quart Colander
ExcelSteel Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Colander
2. Salad Spinner
Salad spinners allow you to quickly and easily dry off salad after rinsing it off. To activate the spinner, simply press down on the pump a few times. When the spinner is activated, centrifugal force pulls all of the water out through the holes of the inner container. And just like that, you have lettuce washed, dried, and ready to eat!
4.7-Quart Salad Spinner
3-Quart Collapsible Salad Spinner
3. Long Handle Colander
Colanders with long handles are useful when you need to hold the colander up while pouring food and water through it. The long handle keeps your hand far enough away to prevent it from being burned by hot water. Long handle colanders usually have a smaller capacity than their larger two handle counterparts, so they're ideal for smaller cooking tasks.
Perforated 11 Inch Stainless Steel Colander
4. Mesh Kitchen Sieve
The kitchen sieve is designed to separate clumps in dry ingredients. Since the mesh is so fine, it only lets the smallest of particles through. Sieves are often used to sift flour; the process helps aerate it, making it easier to mix with other ingredients. These types of sieves are also great for separating broths and other liquids like them.
LiveFresh Large Stainless Steel Fine Mesh Strainer
5. Foldable Colander
What makes foldable colanders unique from other colanders is just that — they fold! When you're done using it, simply press it down, and the various sections collapse, making it easy to store. Foldable colanders are ideal for the kitchen that has minimal storage space. You can also find these available in an assortment of sizes.
5-Quart Collapsible Colander
6-Quart Collapsible "Over The Sink" Colander
6. Wine Funnel With Strainer
If you're a wine enthusiast, a wine funnel with a strainer is an essential kitchen tool. This tool helps aerate the wine and then separate the sediments from it as it's being aerated. These types of funnels are also excellent for easing the process of pouring wine into a decanter or other serving device. Stainless steel funnels won't become tainted or tarnished either.
Wine Enthusiast Aerating Funnel
7. Coarse Kitchen Sieve
A coarse kitchen sieve is used as a colander to drain larger items like pasta or vegetables. Different sized meshes are used for straining foods with different consistencies and sizes. A coarse sieve's mesh is rather large and will let much more food or liquid pass through it. There are a variety of sizes of these sieves, making it easy to find the right size.
Set Of 3 Stainless Steel Fine Mesh Strainers
8. Drum Sieve
This kitchen tool is excellent for straining liquids or sifting things like flour, powdered sugar, or nuts. It is wide, round, and low-walled. The mesh on the bottom of the sieve can be made from steel, cheesecloth, or even nylon. The type of mesh may also determine the type of straining that can be done or how fine it sifts.
6 Inch Mess Sifter
9. Pot Strainer
A pot strainer allows you to quickly strain the water out of your cooked pasta or whatever else contents of the pot. Because of its small, thin size, it's very easy to store and won't require much space. Pot strainers can be made of metal, nylon, silicone, or plastic.
The only downside of this strainer is that you'll need to keep it firmly pressed against the pot to prevent the contents from spilling out. Some pot strainers do have clips to help keep them in place.
Westmark Stainless Steel Pot Strainer
Silicone Pot Strainer
10. Conical Strainer
The conical strainer, "chinois" in French, typically (but not always) has a double layer of fine mesh to ensure the finest sifting. If you need a smooth consistency, this is the type of strainer for you. It's also great at catching seeds during the fruit preserves making-process. The uses for this type of strainer are nearly limitless.
New Star Stainless Steel 8 Inch Reinforced Bouillon Strainer
Fine Mesh Stainless Steel Sieve Strainer
11. Pasta Strainer
This type of pasta strainer has an extra deep basket to ensure that all the contents cook evenly. This style of strainer helps keep the food contained. You typically place the uncooked pasta in this strainer then submerge it into a pot of water to cook. When the noodles are done cooking, you simply pull the basket out of the water. This makes the straining process easy!
Stainless Steel Pasta Basket Strainer
Let us know in the comments below which strainer you're going to add to your kitchen! Before you go, be sure to check out these other must-see kitchen guides: