Simplemost is supported by our readers. When you purchase an item through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The Best Colander and Strainer

Last updated on October 9, 2019

We looked at the top 10 Colander and Strainers and dug through the reviews from 72 of the most popular review sites including Village Bakery, Food Shark Marfa, Heavy, New York Mag, Sullivan Steak House, Kitchen Gear Zone and more. The result is a ranking of the best Colander and Strainers.

Why Trust The Simplemost Score?

Simplemost is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to.

Look for the Simplemost seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Colander and Strainers

Show Contents
Our Take
  Best Large Mesh

Bellemain

Colander

Overall Take

Quality MaterialsThe Bellemain Colander is a well-made strainer that will last for years.

  Also Great

Yummy Kitchenware

Strainer

Overall Take

Perfect for RiceThe Yummy Kitchenware Strainer is a two-layer colander with a long, sturdy handle for safe straining.

  Best for Lots of Cooking

Cuisinart

Stainless Steel Strainers

Overall Take

Tough and AffordableThe Cuisinart Stainless Steel Strainers come in a multi-pack of stainless steel strainers that won't break the bank.

  Best for Small Kitchens

Kitchen Gizmo

Strainer

Overall Take

Space SavingThe Kitchen Gizmo Strainer is clip-on silicone strainer that's great for smaller kitchens.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, Simplemost analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
17

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the colander and strainers available to purchase.
10

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

72

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources.

23,563

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Walmart.

The Best Overall

Bellemain Colander

Our Expert Score
9.9
20 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.6
3,030 user reviews
Our Take

This strainer's stainless steel construction fends off rust and wear. Easy-grip handles prevent drops. Your rice and spaghetti will stay in place thanks to hundreds of closely-spaced holes. During our testing, we found this strainer to be sturdy, and it fit well in the sink.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

Cuisinart Stainless Steel Strainers

Expert Summarized Score
9.4
4 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.2
1,775 user reviews
Our Take

This set of three strainers is built to last. The stainless steel mesh is resistant to rush, corrosion and stains. There's a strainer option to fit meals of any size. In our testing, these were perfect for rinsing grains.

Our Findings

Bellemain Colander

Best Large Mesh

Bellemain Micro-perforated Stainless Steel 5-quart Colander-Dishwasher Safe (Kitchen)


List Price: $29.95 USD
New From: $29.95 USD In Stock
Used from: $17.50 USD In Stock

What We Liked: This strainer’s stainless steel construction fends off rust and wear. Easy-grip handles prevent drops. Your rice and spaghetti will stay in place thanks to hundreds of closely-spaced holes. During our testing, we found this strainer to be sturdy, and it fit well in the sink.

Simplemost Media

Cuisinart Stainless Steel Strainers

Best for Lots of Cooking

Cuisinart CTG-00-3MS Set of 3 Fine Mesh Stainless Steel Strainers (Kitchen)


List Price: $12.99 USD
New From: $12.99 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

What We Liked: This set of three strainers is built to last. The stainless steel mesh is resistant to rush, corrosion and stains. There’s a strainer option to fit meals of any size. In our testing, these were perfect for rinsing grains.

Simplemost Media

Kitchen Gizmo Strainer

Best for Small Kitchens

What We Liked: This BPA-free silicone colander clips onto almost any sized pot or pan for rapid straining. It’s small, but holds up to heavier foods. It’s also dishwasher safe and takes up less room than a traditional strainer. In our testing, we love that this strainer allowed us to reserve some water in the pot. We also loved how small and easy to clean it was.

Simplemost Media

Yummy Kitchenware Strainer

Also Great

9" Kitchen Fine Mesh Strainer with Sturdy Handle and Wider Hook - Perfect for Quinoa (Kitchen)


List Price: $17.90 USD
New From: $17.90 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

What We Liked: Two layers of tightly woven mesh make this colander perfect for washing small grains. The long handle keeps hot food away from your hands. You can rest the wide hook on your counter or sink to prevent spilling.

Our Colander And Strainer Buying Guide

Your favorite pantry staples, like pasta and rice, cook up quick and add a tasty starch to any dish. But you’ve got to have the right tools to whip up a great bowl of rotini or a side of brown rice. Colanders, sometimes called strainers, are a kitchen essential that don’t get a lot of attention. However, you need a high-quality one to whip up your favorite dishes. 

Simplemost Media

You can pick up a cheap plastic colander at any major retailer or home goods store for a couple of bucks, but it won’t last, and plastic can absorb strong odors over time. A more thoughtful approach to purchasing this kitchen standby will pay off in the long run. 

Colanders are perforated bowls that you use to drain or rinse foods like spaghetti, quinoa or chopped veggies. They typically have a long handle or a grip on each side so that you can grab and tilt the colander without burning your hands. The terms “colander” and “strainer” are often used interchangeably, but some people prefer to use “strainer” for cookware with small perforations and “colander” for larger holes. 

Simplemost Media

Some colanders are built with a base or small legs on the bottom. This elevates the strainer so you can rest it in your kitchen sink as it drains, preventing the strained water from building up and seeping back into the bowl. Other colanders have wide hooks so you can rest them on the side of your sink as you strain heavy foods.

Clip-on colanders are also a popular option. They’re usually made of silicone, and they can stretch or retract to fit on almost any pot or pan. Some stainless steel clip-on colanders exist, but they’re not as adjustable as silicone versions. Clip-ons are smaller than standard colanders, so they’re great for small kitchens with limited storage space.

Simplemost Media

Buying a quality colander or strainer instead of settling for cheaply made ones is a small change that can yield big results. Our Tips & Advice will help you navigate your online shopping.

Simplemost Fun Fact

Colanders are far more than vessels for draining your spaghetti. They’re also part of a social movement called Pastafarianism. 

Pastafarianism is also called The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, and it all started in 2005 with a satirical open letter penned by activist Bobby Henderson. Henderson, a physics graduate, was appalled when the Kansas State Board of Education decided to allow public schools to teach Intelligent Design (a form of Creationism) as an alternative to evolution in science classes. 

Henderson demanded that if schools were going to teach Intelligent Design in science classrooms, they should give equal time to teaching kids about The Flying Spaghetti Monster. He invented the creature as a parody god to drive home his point that Intelligent Design wasn’t scientific, and therefore, his imaginary googly-eyed creature deserved equal stage time. 

The Spaghetti Monster quickly became an Internet sensation. Henderson’s book, “The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster,” was released in 2006. The parody religion’s core tenets claim that an invisible ball of spaghetti created the universe, and that global warming is caused by a decline in the number of pirates.

Colanders became the recognized headgear of Pastafarianism, and people across the globe still wear them as a political statement. 

The Colander And Strainer Tips and Advice

  • The perfect colander or strainer will be made of dense, rust-proof materials, like stainless steel. Silicone strainers are also a great option. They’re less likely to create a breeding ground for bacteria than other materials. Plastic colanders may crack or absorb odors over time. 
  • Think about what types of meals you frequently cook. This will determine the size of the holes you’ll need in your strainer. If you make lots of rice or quinoa, look for a strainer with very small holes. Models with double layers of mesh are also helpful; they’ll keep small grains in your strainer while still draining water. If you love thicker pastas like spaghetti, a colander with larger holes will suffice. 
  • The placement of the handle or grips on your colander is also important. Handles should be long enough to keep your hands safely away from hot water. They also need to be sturdy enough to hold up under the weight of thicker veggies like potatoes. If your colander uses hand grips, make sure they stick out far enough to give you some distance from boiling water. Grips with rubber covers will also keep your palms nice and cool as you cook.
  • Do you have a large kitchen, or are you whipping up meals in a small space? Your colander will take up some room in your cabinet, so make sure you have enough room for storage before you buy a large one. Strainer sets will take up more space, while folding silicone colanders can squeeze into small corners. You can also use the colander’s grips or hooks to hang it up, saving yourself tons of cabinet space.
  • Properly caring for your strainer will help it last for years. Make sure that yours is dishwasher safe before you pop it in on the hot cycle. Handwashing it with gentle dishwashing liquid and allowing it to air dry is always a safe bet. Using your sink’s sprayer hose on the colander’s basket will help you knock any food particles loose.

About The Author

Abby Stassen
Abby Stassen 

Abby Stassen has a bachelor's degree in English language & literature from the University of Michigan. She's been writing professionally for over a decade. Food is medicine, and if you've got the right tools you can have fun creating delicious medicine every day. Abby loves cooking, and she only uses kitchen products that meet her exacting standards. Whether it's air fryers, electric steamers or the perfect set of cutlery, Abby knows which kitchen products deserve an online mention.