Are you looking for the best rice strainers? You’ve come to the right place.
In this guide to rice strainers, we will examine your options for straining rice, what to look for in a rice strainer, and give our recommendations for the best rice strainers on the market.
Here’s a quick summary of our top picks and why we selected them:
|Product Name||Why We Picked It|
|OXO Good Grips Rice & Small Grains Washing Colander||
|HiramWare Stainless Steel 5-quart 10.5 Inch Colander||
|Walfos Silicone Collapsible Colander Set
Yummy Kitchenware 9-Inch Kitchen Fine Mesh Strainer
LiveFresh Stainless Steel Micro-Perforated 5-Quart Colander
Types of Rice Strainers
There are several different tools that you can use to strain and rinse rice. Which one will work best will greatly depend on the rice you are straining. Some types of rice, like basmati, have very long rice grains that won’t slip through large colander holes. Other types have small grains that can be almost as fine as quinoa and will require a fine mesh to keep them from escaping.
Stainless Steel Colanders
A stainless steel colander is the most commonly used kitchen tool for straining rice because almost every foodie’s kitchen has at least one. The best colanders are multi-purpose kitchen tools made from high-grade stainless steel and are easy to clean dishwasher safe.
Plastic colanders are also very common. They are the less expensive alternative to a stainless colander. They have a shorter service life than stainless steel models, generally have larger drain holes, and most are only top-rack dishwasher safe.
Silicone colanders are a rather new entry into the market, and the majority are of either a clip-on variety or collapsable. A clip-on colander makes straining rice very easy as it leaves both of your hands-frees for maneuvering your pot or bowl, while collapsible models are easy to store. Most silicone colanders are dishwasher safe. Just make sure they are made from food-grade silicone.
Fine Mesh Strainers
Mesh strainers are second only to colanders for draining rice. Their small holes prevent grains from slipping through, and they can serve many other food preparation duties. The one drawback to mesh strainers is they can be difficult to clean if soft materials get stuck in them. Many times, hand washing is necessary even when they are dishwasher safe.
Best Rice Strainer
OXO Good Grips Rice & Small Grains Washing Colander
This may well be the best colander for working with rice on the market and considering that it was specifically designed for washing rice, this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
The OXO Good Grips has many features that set it apart. It is the only colander on our list designed to hold a small amount of water in the bottom.
This isn’t poor engineering. It was intentional. You look at the pouring spout, and you will notice that it has small perforations. As you pour the last of the water from the bottom, it will come out of these perforations, and you will easily be able to see how clear it is. This is a very nifty idea.
The OXO Good Grips are also made with square holes instead of the more traditional round openings or slots. Ever try to put a round peg in a square hole?
That is the logic behind this feature. Square holes trap round grains, keeping them from slipping into your sink but allowing faster draining and easier cleaning.
Of course, you also must remember that this is a member of the OXO Good Grips family. Like all members of this line of products, this colander provides a firm, comfortable grip and stable base that make it a joy to use.
Made from BPA-free plastic
Top-rack dishwasher safe for easy cleaning
Also great for rinsing berries and other easily bruised fruits
Small enough to easily store
Not stainless steel
Subject to staining
Quinoa sized grain can stick in the drain cavities
HiramWare Stainless Steel 5-quart 10.5 Inch Colander
A top choice in a traditional style colander is this five-quart, 10.5-inch colander from Hiram Ware.
Composed of a stainless steel colander basket with a molded-in-place handle, its large size and rugged construction make it a true kitchen workhorse when cooking for a crowd.
Able to strain not just rice but very useful for washing fruits and vegetables or draining enough pasta for a family gathering, this stainless steel colander is an ideal companion for the cook that only has storage space for one colander.
Excellent general use colander
Molded handles are comfortable and make maneuvering easy
Stout stainless steel colander bowl
Sturdy legs won’t fold or flex
Lightweight stainless steel
The sticker on the bottom is hard to remove and leaves residue behind
Tiny perforations can lead to slow draining under running water
Walfos Silicone Collapsible Colander Set
If you have little storage space but demand big performance from your colanders, this three-piece colander set is worth considering.
Made from food-grade BPA-free silicone with hard plastic, these colanders fold to just i.5 inches in height, making them our best colander pick for small kitchens with limited storage space. They are heat-resistant, light, scratch-resistant, rust-proof, and easy to maneuver but still strong enough to handle heavy loads of foods.
The largest of this collapsible colander set holds a full four quarts of food, making it ideal for cooking family-sized portions of rice or pasta and the smaller colander is ideal for rinsing berries.
100% money-back guarantee
Smooth handles provide a firm grip
Bowl can flex when you drain large pots of foods
It doesn’t provide the longevity of stainless steel
Micro-perforations can be difficult to keep clean
Yummy Kitchenware 9-Inch Kitchen Fine Mesh Strainer
mTight enough for straining the finest Tight enough for straining tiny rice grains but with the strength you need for draining pasta and other heavy jobs, this mesh model from yummy is the perfect size for singles who don’t have time for entertaining, young couples, and kitchens with very limited storage space.
It is ideal for rinsing small portions of rice, straining just enough vegetables for two, and rinsing berries for snacking.
Riveted handle and hook for strength.
Large smooth-contoured hook for extra stability and firm grip
Can do double duty as a sifter or sieve
Stainless steel construction
It can’t hold the volume of foods that a colander can
Tight mesh can be difficult to keep clean
Some buyers have noted rough edges that should be polished out
LiveFresh Stainless Steel Micro-Perforated 5-Quart Colander
Made from micro-perforated stainless steel, this colander is one of the best engineered and constructed colanders available in its price range.
This colander can be used for cleaning fruits and vegetables, straining pasta, or rinsing rice with equal ease.
The extra drain holes provided by its dense mesh pattern and rapid draining base provide fast fluid removal without shaking and tiling.
It sits firmly in place in a sink and can be settled on top of a bowl or pot with ease, adding versatility, and even among stainless steel colanders, it is a pillar of strength.
Wonderful for large quantities of food
A very solidly built stainless steel colander
An ideal colander for a variety of cooking needs
Colander takes up a lot of storage space
Tiny openings can be difficult to clean
Soft pasta can easily clog drains
Subject to damage if dropped
Things to Consider Before Buying a Rice Collander
There are a number of key features that you should pay attention to if you want to find the best colander, not just for washing rice but for general kitchen use. Here is a brief breakdown of what to look for when shopping for a colander.
Your first concern when buying a colander is to decide on your preferred material. Remember that your colander will likely have to stand up to heavy loads of food and the stress of boiling water being poured through it during its lifetime. Also, keep in mind that what your colander is made of will impact its price.
Stainless Steel Colander
Stainless steel is always our first choice for the best colanders. It is strong for bearing heavy loads like draining pasta, dishwasher safe for easy cleaning, and a quality colander made from stainless steel will likely outlast its owner.
Plastic colanders are a very economical option if you are on a tight budget. They won’t provide you with a stainless steel model’s service life, but they are serviceable and will work. Just be sure and remember that you should only purchase a plastic colander made from BPA-free plastic.
Silicone offers some advantages as it is very flexible, doesn’t conduct heat, and, in most cases, is very easy to care for. The only real issue with silicone is that it can stain easily and look rather shabby with use.
It is best to consider your lifestyle when choosing the best size colander to fit your needs. Do you love to entertain and often fix large batches of pasta or rice?
If you do, you will want to buy a larger colander that can handle large quantities of food.
If you live alone, rarely have friends over, or have a tiny kitchen, a smaller colander that requires less storage space and is better suited to small portions might be a better fit.
Colanders come with different size holes and slots in many different patterns. Here is a brief breakdown of how colander holes.
When you are looking for a colander to strain the rice, then hole size is always a primary consideration. Holes that are too large will allow rice grains to sip through and escape into your sink.
Then again, too small holes may easily clog and not drain well.
The secret is to match the size of your colander’s holes to the type of rice you most often cook.
Your colander’s number of holes has greatly impacted how fast it will drain. Naturally, the more holes it has, the faster liquids will drain away. Extra drain holes equate to faster draining.
How the holes are arranged in your colander is as important as their number, if not more so. A well-designed colander will have a hole pattern that avoids dead zones where extra water can pool.
Remember, it isn’t just about draining faster, but completely draining that is important when handling food.
Base and Handles
The handles and base are not only important when considering how well your colander functions and your comfort level using it. They affect the safety of its use.
Handles should be large enough to provide a sure grip when lifting and thick enough that they don’t cut into your hands.
More importantly, they should be welded, riveted, or both to assure that you don’t need to worry about them breaking free at inopportune moments.
Your colander’s base should provide a firm grip to prevent sliding in your sink but be small enough to fit in average mixing bowls and pots. It should make allowances for liquids to escape from under your colander so food can drain faster and be signed where it doesn’t trap small food particles so your colander can be easily cleaned.
Whether cleaning rice or removing excess water from it, rice can present many challenges to a colander’s design.
The best colanders will match the grain size of the rice you are working with, provide fast fluid removal and be comfortable and safe for you to work with.
What is the best colander? That is a question only you can answer.
Our sincere hope is that the information we have provided in the colander guide will make choosing from the best colanders on the market easier.