Grated cheese is the perfect topping for pasta, salads, soups and more. Whether you’re cooking a homemade pizza or making nachos, freshly grated cheese from a rotary cheese grater will give you the best results.
Rotary cheese graters come with a variety of features. Our top pick, the Westmark Multipurpose Heavy Duty Rotary Cheese & Vegetable Grater, has suction cups to stick to your counter and prevent slippage. Whatever your level of expertise in the kitchen, here’s how to find the perfect rotary cheese grater for you.
Most rotary cheese graters use drum blades. You insert the cheese into a small cylinder with one hand and turn the handle with the other hand. As the cylinder spins, it cuts the cheese.
Some rotary cheese graters use flat blades. You place the cheese on top of a circular flat blade with one hand and turn the handle with the other hand. Flat-blade rotary cheese graters eliminate the extra step of cutting your cheese into small pieces that will fit into a drum blade. The trade-off is that flat blade graters require extra care and attention while using.
Handheld rotary cheese graters take up little space in a drawer and can easily be broken down. You put the cheese in with one hand and turn the handle with the other. This allows for maximum flexibility while cooking or serving, and is best if you only need small portions of cheese.
Countertop rotary cheese graters usually have suction cups so they’ll stay in one place while they handle big jobs. They require more storage space, but you can use them with one hand instead of two. If you make a lot of pizza or have a lot of taco nights, a countertop model might be your best option.
Rotary cheese grater handles shouldn’t wobble or slip as you use them. They should turn easily and attach securely. At the same time, they should also detach quickly for easy cleaning.
Some graters have handles that allow you to grate both clockwise and counterclockwise. Other graters have multiple handle ports to accommodate both left-handed and right-handed users. If you can’t try the grater out for yourself in the store, check online user reviews for comments about handle durability and strength.
Some rotary cheese graters will have a single blade or drum, while others will have a series of interchangeable blades that allow you to properly cut a wider variety of foods. You might want a grater that also slices (an easy time-saver for vegetables) and minces (ideal for garlic or nuts).
Look for additional accessories like cleaning brushes, nutcrackers or storage bags. A storage bag may be particularly useful if you have small children and are worried about storing your grater on the counter or in a low cabinet.
How much cheese fits into the drum at once? Constantly reloading your grater can be a pain. If you have to cut your cheese into small pieces just to get it into the grater, then the knife and the cutting board are also two extra things to clean.
You may only need a large rotary cheese grater once or twice a year, but the extra capacity and lack of extra cleaning may be worth it if you’ve got the storage space.
Some rotary cheese graters can go in the dishwasher, while others need to be washed by hand. All graters should break down for cleaning. Make sure you can easily reach every part of your grater.
The cheese will get caught in every possible nook and cranny. It’s important to be thorough and clean after each use with soap and water. For more difficult jobs, soak and then scrub with an old toothbrush or pastry brush. Your grater should be spotless in no time.
The majority of rotary cheese graters cost $20-$30. Artisan quality graters with extra durability and multiple features might be $40-$50. Some graters have a warranty, others don’t.
A. If your grater comes with a bunch of blades but no storage bag, consider where you’ll store all those sharp little pieces safely in your kitchen. You can always buy your own bag, but it may be worth it to switch to a grater with fewer add-ons if you don’t need them.
A. No and you shouldn’t try. Sharpening each blade in the drum would be difficult and dangerous. Plus there’s no need. With proper cleaning and use, the blades are designed to stay sharp for the lifetime of your grater.
What you need to know: A unique aerial handle makes this grater a breeze to operate, while its suction cups keep it firmly in place.
What you’ll love: Grates, slices and shreds. Folds for easy storage.
What you should consider: Plastic feels a bit flimsy.
What you need to know: Don’t let its position on the lower end of the price range fool you, this grater is easy to use and delivers consistent results.
What you’ll love: Works in both left and right hands. Portable. Dishwasher safe.
What you should consider: Some users report issues with durability. Check warranty options from the manufacturer, store or your credit card.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
What you need to know: Heavy-duty, with three interchangeable drums to make sure you’re using the right blade for the right job.
What you’ll love: Grates cheese, vegetables and nuts from fine to coarse. Versatile. Can come in turquoise blue to add a pop of color to your kitchen.
What you should consider: Many users report issues with the quality of the suction cup on the bottom of the grater.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Frank Paiva writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.