A whole block of cheese will keep its freshness longer and it has a purer cheese taste. With pre-shredded cheese, it keeps fresh with potato starch which is that powdery white layer over it and it’s full of additives. Shredding your own cheese may seem like a hassle but in actual fact, it doesn’t need to take long if you use some of the very best cheese graters with razor sharp blades.
Using ready packed pre-shredded cheese seems very convenient as it saves you time from having to shred your own cheese. There’s no chance of you shredding bits of your fingers off too. But realistically it only takes less than a minute to grate your own cheese so it’s really not that inconvenient. Here are 7 of our best cheese graters for 2017 to make quick work of cheese grating.
The Different Types of Cheese Graters
Most people are familiar with the traditional box standard cheese grater but there are a few other types you can choose from that may be more suitable to your needs.
Electric Cheese Graters
Shredding cheese electrically can usually be done in a food processor which can be a hassle to take out to use just for cheese. Although it’s not very popular at the moment, there are a few compact models that’s designed to shred cheese as well as other food stuffs such as nuts and root vegetables.
Electric cheese graters are very efficient in shredding cheese and there’s low risk of injury as the grating blades are usually covered up. Some have a corded design which can limit your reach but you can get rechargeable ones so it can be brought to the table for serving.
Rotary Cheese Graters
This type of cheese grater is a small handheld size that’s ideal for grating parmesan cheese at the table. It uses a drum with razor sharp blades that’s inserted into the holder with food pressed down in the top compartment against the bladed drum. Shredding is done by rotating handle that’s to the side of the drum.
Due to the small size of the rotary drum grater, this means there’s the hassle of having to cut up the food into smaller chunks to fit into the top compartment for grating. They’re usually quite easy to take apart and most models can be cleaned in the dishwasher.
Handheld Cheese Graters
Designed with a large grating plate and handle for gripping onto, handheld cheese graters can range from a small size to large size. They’re excellent for grating cheese directly into a bowl, plate, container etc. However, the best handheld cheese graters only have one sized grating holes but there are models which also have a slicer or zesting holes on the plate. That means a smaller grating surface for each type of shredding though.
Grating with this type of shredder can get tiring on your hands but the best thing about it is that you can lean the end against the counter or whatever you’re shredding into at a 30 degree angle for better leverage and grip. For extra comfortability and safety, look for handles that are fully coated in rubber.
Box Cheese Graters
These are the best types of cheese graters due to their tough 4 walled box design with a different grating surface on each side. They typically have a side for a fine grate, a coarse grate, zesting and slicing which can be used to grate soft or hard food items thanks to the sturdy shape. Grating with this doesn’t create as much mess since the gratings fall inside the walls so when you lift the grater up once you’re done, the grated material is in a neat pile.
Unfortunately with a box grater, it’s quite bulky so it can take up a bit of space unless you get one that folds flat. Most of the popular models can be cleaned in the dishwasher but otherwise a wiping it clean with a damp cloth will suffice. It’s a lot easier to clean than other graters.
Our 7 Best Cheese Graters Reviewed 2017
7. Ariete Grati 2.0 Rechargeable Electric Grater
- Electric and Cordless allows you to grate freely without having to use both hands.
- Saves Space – Designed to stand upright at its longest length so it doesn’t take up much space on your kitchen counter or inside the cupboard.
- Easy to Clean – The parts are removable so you can clean inside each nook and cranny or it can be washed in the dishwasher.
The Ariete Grati 2.0 electric cheese grater features an innovative cordless design that’s rechargeable so it gives you the freedom to electrically grate without effort or anything to hold you back. On a full charge, you can grate up to 1kg of cheese which works pretty quickly. Grating is done inside the rotary drum with fine graters which makes it ideal for nuts and chocolate as well.
Although it’s quite quick in grating, the drum is fairly small so you will need to use small chunks to grate each time. This can be a bit of a hassle as you will have to cut the cheese up. Other than that, it’s pretty easy to use and works quick but due to its handy portion serving size, it’s best to use this cheese grater for sprinkling over dishes.
6. Zyliss Acid Etched Classic Drum Grater
- Superior Grating Performance – Uses acid etched blades which are sharper so you can grate even hard cheese effortlessly.
- Removable Parts can be taken apart for easy cleaning in the dishwasher.
- Non-Slip – The body and handle is coated in rubber making it comfortable to hold without risk of slippage.
- Interchangeable Handle that’s suitable for left or right handed use.
- 5 Year Guarantee
Made with razor sharp acid etched blades, the Zyliss Acid Etched Classic rotary drum cheese grater gives a more quicker and effective grate without needing to use much pressure. The rubber grip handle turns smoothly when grating even when it’s hard cheese such as parmesan. You will need to be careful of the sharp blades but luckily the drum can be locked in place to make it safe to store.
The compartment on top of the drum is where the cheese is placed in ready for grating and to avoid getting your fingers grated as well, the anti-slip thumb handle helps to hold the cheese down as you grate. Besides using it for cheese, it can be used to grate chocolate as well.
When reassembling the removable parts of the drum and the handle, it safely locks back into place with a click. There are no loose or wobbly parts during use. Again as with most rotary cheese graters, it’s quite small which means it’s mostly suitable for topping off cooked dishes.
5. Zyliss Acid Etched Rotary Fine and Coarse Drum Grater
- Two Interchangeable Grater Drums for fine or coarse grating suitable for hard and soft cheese.
- Non-Slip Handle prevents slippage and makes it easy to grip on for ease of grating.
- Easy to Disassemble – Simple to remove the parts for easy cleaning and straightforward to put back together.
Similar to the previous Zyliss cheese grater, the Zyliss Acid Etched Rotary Drum Cheese Grater has 2 interchangeable drums that can be inserted into the rotary grater either way making it suitable for left or right handed use. One drum is for a fine grate which is also ideal for nuts or chocolate to give a sprinkled finish to desserts. The other drum creates a coarser grate that can be used for root vegetables as well.
As with all rotary graters, you will need to cut up the food bits into smaller chunks to fit into the drum for grating which is why it’s best to use these cheese graters for small amounts of grating. However, with its razor sharp blades, you can efficiently grate cheese or other food stuff effortlessly in a few minutes.
4. Kitchen Craft Grater and Graduated Acrylic Collector
- 4 Interchangeable Stainless Steel Blades suitable for fine and coarse grating, zesting and slicing.
- Container with Measurements – Ideal for storing leftovers and to use for measuring out recipes.
- Rubber Feet keeps the container in place so it doesn’t slide about dangerously when grating.
The best cheese graters would give you the option to do more than just fine and coarse grating which makes the Kitchen Craft Cheese Grater With Container one of them. There are blades to zest ginger, oranges or lemon and a slicer blade to make thin slices of food including tomato. It’s simple and safe to remove the blades as it’s encased in plastic with a tab to one edge for easy removal. Once in place, it’s secure and doesn’t move about during grating.
Having the container as a graduated design is quite handy as it’s easier to tilt the piled up grated material to the end. You can grate directly into it and store any leftovers in it. Some cheese graters with containers would have a lid to store the leftovers in but unfortunately this one isn’t one of them. However, the blades can be turned over to cover the top or just use a piece of cling film.
Blades are pretty sharp so it can grate almost everything from soft cheese to hard root vegetables but just be careful with your fingers when you grate the last bit of your food as there’s no opening to push this through into the container. It’s a basic design cheese grater that’s simple to use without creating a mess or costing a lot of money.
3. Dexam Rotary Cheese Grater Set
- 3 Interchangeable Stainless Steel Drums suitable for fine and coarse grating and for slicing.
- Suitable For Left & Right Handed Use – Drums can be inserted either way to suit the user.
- Dishwasher Safe – Easy and safe to use in the dishwasher.
The best thing about a rotary cheese grater is that it’s safer to use than a traditional or electric cheese grater because it keeps your fingers away from the blades. This Dexam Rotary Cheese Grater Set is no exception as each of the 3 interchangeable blade drums safely tucks into the plastic holder ready for grating. With its fine, coarse and slicing grater blades, these can be used for hard and medium cheese as well as nuts, chocolate and some vegetables.
There’s a handle with a thick stopper on top that keeps the food item in place making it easy to use as well as allowing you to push down on it to grate that last sliver of food. It can be a bit of a nightmare to wash by hand so if you plan to do this, use a small bristle brush to get into the blades. Otherwise, throw it in the dishwasher.
The small size means it can be easily stored in the drawer but it takes up a bit of space due to amount of drums there are. Despite the plastic construction, it’s pretty strong and sturdy as it can withstand the pressure of grating hard foods such as carrots. Not bad for the price.
2. Microplane Home Fine Grater
- Grates Both Ways for a finer grate and to get quicker results
- Curved Grating Surface enables you to grate comfortably whether it’s upright or laid down
- Rubber Handle makes it easy and safe to hold onto whilst grating
- Dishwasher Safe for hassle free cleaning
Featuring a large oversized grating area, the Microplane Home Fine Grater can be used to grate food in both directions which means it can give finely minced garlic and ginger and zesting citrus fruits. The blades are pretty sharp so it can even be used for nuts and carrots but mind your fingers when you get to that last sliver of food.
Besides the rubber coating on the large handle which enables you to get a good and safe grip on it during grating, there’s also a large hole at the end. This is ideal for hanging onto kitchen utensil hooks so it’s within easy reach for when you need it. Probably safer to store it hanging up instead of in a drawer as well due to the mega sharp blades.
This cheese grater is strong and sturdy making it safe to use. There’s no worry about it snapping in half if you put a bit of pressure on it as you normally would need to with handheld graters. It’s a bit pricey but the quality is worth it.
1. OXO Good Grips Box Grater
- 4 Grating Surfaces can be used to finely or coarsely grate food, zesting and slicing.
- Container catches gratings creating less mess and it’s ideal for storing any excess grated food.
- Non-Slip Rings prevents the box grater from sliding around when grating so it’s safe to use.
Made from stainless steel, the OXO Good Grips Box Cheese Grater includes a container for you to directly grate into. With 4 grating surfaces, it’s ideal for a fine grate, a coarse grate, zesting and slicing a variety of foods from soft cheese to root vegetables. If you have any leftovers, it can be left in this container for easy storage and it comes with a lid to keep it fresh too.
With the large rubber coated handle on top, it helps to give you a good grip on the cheese grater whilst you work. It’s pretty straightforward to use and safe as the base of the grater and base of the container is also coated in a rubber ring to prevent the cheese grater from slipping about during grating. The bulky size means it will take up a bit of space but this is how it is with box graters. At least this one is slightly slimmer.
Cleaning this box grater is quite easy as it’s safe to wash in the dishwasher or you could give it a wipe clean instead. This is one of the best cheese box graters as its construction is solid and it doesn’t rust even after it’s been in the dishwasher so there’s no doubt about the quality. It’s a reasonable price to pay for a well-known brand.
Brief Buyer’s Guide For Cheese Graters
Cheese graters are available in a variety of designs and sizes to suit any budget and purpose. With so many to choose from, it can be hard to remember what to look for and most people tend to have in mind budget and quality more than anything else. Whilst both of these are very important, there are other factors you should take into consideration.
Type of Grater
Consider what you will be using the grater for and how often. If it’s just to serve a sprinkle of cheese as a topping for dishes at the table then a rotary cheese grater will suffice. There’s no point of getting a box cheese grater which is best used for grating large amounts if you’re just doing small amounts of food.
Style of Grating
Enables you to shred different sized strips of cheese from wide slices to very fine string strips. Some types of cheese graters only have the one grating blade so if you’re looking to shred cheese and food in different styles, you may want to look into getting a box grater or rotary cheese grater with a few different blade drums.
What can it grate?
Besides shredding cheese, you can use cheese graters to grate most vegetables such as carrots, courgettes, etc. It can be used for ginger or if you have zesting blades on your grater, you can zest a lemon too. Finer grates can be used for things such as nuts or chocolate to create a sprinkle which is ideal for dessert toppings.
Helps to hold the grated cheese in so less mess is created. It also gives you something to store any unused grated cheese in. Not all cheese graters come with a container but in all honesty, it’s not really an important feature to have, just useful to some extent.
Ease of Use
As each type of grater works differently, the comfort level of using each one differs. In a rotary grater, you should check whether the handle turns smoothly during grating and if the long handheld handle is easily grippable. For ease of use in a box grater, look at whether the handle is non-slip and wide enough to grip onto.
Makes cleaning up easy and kills off all the little bits stuck inside the blade holes. It’s safer than washing the grater by hand too. If it’s dishwasher safe, then it usually signifies that the stainless steel grater plate is pretty robust and won’t rust so easily.
How the Zyliss Classic Cheese Grater Works
Watch the Zyliss Classic cheese grater in action and see how effective this rotary cheese grater is.
The Zyliss Classic is featured at number 5 and 6 on our list of the best cheese graters, and they come in two different sizes.