Colanders & Strainers

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  • Learn More About Colanders & Strainers

    Colanders and strainers are both used to drain liquids from the food, but there are a couple of differences between the two. A colander is typically bigger than a strainer and looks like a bowl with holes at the bottom. A strainer, sometimes called a basket strainer, is also bowl-shaped, but is made of finer mesh. Colanders usually have two short handles on either side of the bowl, while strainers usually feature a long handle.

    Both are useful kitchen tools when you need to drain water from foods, but the mesh of the strainer allows for liquid to pass through while holding on to smaller solids, making it useful for tasks like rinsing rice or small grains before cooking. If you’re looking to separate the water from larger foods like vegetables or drain a pot of freshly-cooked pasta, then a colander is your best bet. Colanders are also handy if you want to keep cooking liquids for later use, like reserving liquid from boiled potatoes for thinning soups and sauces—just strain your items above a bowl instead of the sink.

    Colanders and strainers are organized into different types based on their intended purpose or what material they’re made out of. Here are a few that you can pick from:

    • Metal colanders are a classic, durable choice for any kitchen, perfect for preparing pasta and rinsing vegetables.
    • Stainless steel colanders are lightweight and long-lasting, and their silvery finish makes them an easy match to other stainless steel items in your kitchen.
    • Copper colanders look fantastic hanging on your kitchen pot rack and add a gourmet touch to food preparation.
    • Ceramic colanders can be slightly more breakable but don't get as hot, and many vintage colanders are made of ceramic.
    • Berry colanders are made for rinsing your favorite fruits, and some are pretty enough to double as serving dishes for a medley of strawberries, cherries, and blackberries.
    • Sink colanders make fantastically functional and simple straining tools that can often adjust to fit on the edges of your sink.
    • Chinois strainers are cone-shaped and made of very fine mesh, ideal for dusting baked goods with flour or powdered sugar.