Straight To The Point
Our favorite salad spinner is the OXO Good Grips Glass Salad Spinner. It dries lettuce efficiently and is easy to use . For a more inexpensiveas well as lightweightpick, we recommend the Zyliss Swift Dry Salad Spinner, which is a longtime Serious Eats favorite.
Most of us will only ever use a salad spinner for one task: drying lettuce. However, dry lettuce is important.
This is because salad dressings are oil-based and, as you probably know, oil and water dont mix. If theres water left on your salad greens, the dressing wont adhere to the leaves and will instead collect at the bottom of the bowl. A good salad spinner is the most efficient way to remove a lot of water quickly.
We last tested salad spinners in 2016, where we named the Zyliss Swift Dry Salad Spinner our favorite. Since then, notable brands have come out with new models. That, coupled with the fact its been six years since we last reviewed them, meant it was time to retest salad spinners.
So, we put 10 models through the paces, starting out with a small wish list. Our ideal spinner could handle enough lettuce to make a large salad to serve four or more and we didnt want to have to take out a small loan to buy it . We focused on models priced from $20 to $65, with a stated capacity of five quarts or more.
The Most Durable Salad Spinner: Oxo Steel Salad Spinner
What we liked: This models pump-style spin mechanism was easy to use and effective, making it one of the fastest salad spinners we tested. It handled large and small batches of greens . It had a helpful brake button to stop the basket from spinning, a non-slip, silicone-covered base, and a handle that locked flat for storage. The stainless steel bowl was durable but lightweight. It was also dishwasher-safe.
What we didnt like: To use, the basket rested on a raised rotational point and it was a little difficult, at times, to align the basket. The opaque bowl also meant you couldnt easily check to confirm the basket was centered. Like the glass OXO, this stainless steel model was pricier.
Price at time of publish: $65.
The Best Inexpensive Salad Spinner: Zyliss Swift Dry Salad Spinner
Our previous favorite from our 2016 review held up. During testing, the Zyliss dried greens the fastest out of all the spinners and the pedal-style pump mechanism created a fast, smooth spin. Its all-plastic construction may be a downside for some but is reflected in its lower price tag.
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What’s The Best Way To Clean A Salad Spinner
Some of the spinners we tested were dishwasher safe, so that’s an easy and effective option to get your spinner clean. You can also hand wash your spinner, just make sure to get a sponge or dishcloth into any nooks and crannies, and to thoroughly dry the device afterwards . No one wants musty tasting spinach!
The Criteria: What We Look For In A Good Salad Spinner
Serious Eats / Madeline Muzzi / Amanda Suarez
The best salad spinners had easy to use, pump-style mechanisms and worked quickly and smoothly. They were able dry greens and tender herbs efficiently and handled enough lettuce for a four-serving salad. They were also stable on the counter as they spun and had added usability features like brake buttons that allowed you to easily stop their basket. For better clean up, our favorite spinners had dishwasher-safe components, and didn’t trap too much lettuce in the lid or basket.
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Flaws But Not Dealbreakers
There are very few flaws. The only consistent flaw in other editorial reviews is that its not particularly easy to store. Its a large salad spinnerits colander has a 5-quart capacity, and the bowl has a 6-quart capacityand the lid isnt completely flat, but its the only model we looked at that has a locking pump, making it the easiest to stack overall. But thats a small drawback were willing to deal with in light of its many, many excellent features.
We do wish it spun a little quicker, but as we learned in testing, it still does a great job drying greens and its more restrained RPM means its great at drying other things, too.
Last, its push mechanism does take up some room in the bowl, and we wish it could be allocated to whatever you want to put inside. But considering the machines large size, its not really necessarythe Good Grips is still very, very roomy.
What We Looked For
After unboxing, the first thing we considered was how durable and high-quality the materials felt in our hands. Did the strainer basket feel sturdy? Was the plastic thick or flimsy and prone to buckling? Did it seem like it could hold up to regular use and vigorous washing, preferably in the dishwasher?
Most people are going to want a salad spinner that’s big enough to easily accommodate greens for a family of four, multiple days of desk lunches, or a small dinner party. This is not just a matter of convenience, but also one of user experience: if greens are packed too tightly into a small basket, they’re more likely to trap water and grit and will take longer to clean.
Once you start pumping a salad spinner, it can get moving at a serious clip. If it’s not designed for stability, it’s liable to go spinning right off your countertop. In general, spinners with wide-bottomed bowls and a non-slip base that uses a non-stick ring or rubberized “feet” are easier to balance and keep steady on the counter.
A salad spinner is only as good as its spin, so we looked for something that would get turning easily. We wanted a crank or pump that didnt take too much force to use, and, preferably one that could be used with one hand. A brake button, if it worked, that could stop the spinner quickly was a nice bonus that increased ease of use.
Leafy greens in the Zyliss
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Other Salad Spinners We Tested
In previous years, the Zyliss Swift Dry Salad Spinner ranked highly in our tests. With a lever pump, solid construction, and a ridged strainer basketa tweak that is billed by the brand as “aquavent technology” to remove waterits a salad spinner that works effectively and efficiently at drying greens. The Zyliss also won points for its large capacity, stability, and easy one-handed operation. But the lever pump is not as durable as wed hoped for one of our editors, it snapped in half after about two years of use. The brand now offers the Zyliss Easy Spin Salad Spinner as well, a pull-cord model, which we just dont find to be as easy to use as the one-handed Oxo pump model.
The Mirloco Salad Sling was a fun one to throw into the mix. Harkening back to the DIY salad spinner made from a kitchen towel or pillowcase, its constructed of a microfiber towel sewn around a waterproof sheet. You simply pile the greens in the center, bundle up the four corners of the sling, and whip it around overhead. This is a great space-saving option since it folds up to the size of a kitchen towel. But since you can only use it twice before it needs to dry, its just not a practical choice.
While we appreciated the generous size of the plastic bowl of the Mueller Large Salad Spinner, its pull-out handle was awkward and unpleasant to operate.
This one was identical to the Mueller and so were our feelings about it.
Why You Should Trust Us
Weve spent 25 hours researching dozens of salad spinners to find the best for testing. We consulted salad experts about their favorite models, speaking to cookbook authors Terry Hope Romero, author of Salad Samurai, Jennifer Chandler, author of Simply Salads, and Georgeanne Brennan, author of Salad of the Day for Williams-Sonoma. Their insight helped shape the criteria we established for testing, and each gave helpful salad-spinning tips. We also looked to reviews by Good Housekeeping, Cooks Illustrated , The Kitchn, the Wall Street Journal , and Epicurious, and considered well-loved models on sites like Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond, Sur la Table, Williams-Sonoma, and Macys.
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Why Trust Simply Recipes
We thoroughly research the top products on the market to identify the best tools, appliances, and gadgets for home cooks. From tried-and-true brands to up-and-coming newcomers worth paying attention to, we stay in the loop about all things kitchen-related so you never miss a bite.
All of the products in this article were tested and reviewed by Lizzy Briskin, a chef, food writer, and recipe developer who is a daily salad for lunch girl.
How We Picked And Tested
People use their salad spinners to wash and/or dry all sorts of things: lettuce, berries, spinach, herbs, bathing suits , so its important that a salad spinner be easy to use. Spinners come with either a handle at the top, a pump, or a string to turn the inside basket. That mechanism should work smoothly and shouldnt require too much effort, or your arm may get sore. We found pull-cord-based models, like the Zyliss Easy Spin, to be lacking. User reviews are consistently low and our own editorial teams experience with this style convinced us that the cords are ultimately too fussy to use and, more important, hard to keep clean. Our experts agreed with us. I do not like the ones with the pull string, says Jennifer Chandler. I feel like its waiting for something to break. Georgeanne Brennan agrees, saying, I do like the crank and not the cord. With that decided, we kept to pump-action models, like the Good Grips, and handle-based models where you manually spin the bowl with a crank, ratchet, or rack-and-pinion system.
For our original guide, we soaked and spun one 10-ounce bag of adult spinach in each spinner six times. We weighed the spinach dry, after soaking, after three spins, and after six. Additionally, we washed and spun a pint of raspberries, checking for any bruising, as well as a bundle of dill to see which spinner baskets were most difficult to clean. Wobbliness and ease of use were also evaluated.
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Leifheit Signature Salad Spinner
Type: Pull cord
Capacity: 5 quarts
The salad spinner from Leifheit uses a rip-cord mechanism to spin the basket. Like a yo-yo, the cord wraps back on itself, and the next pull will send it spinning in the other direction. Also like a yo-yo, if something interferes, the cord won’t retract properly and you’ll have to wind it back up by hand.
We liked the attractive design of this product: The bowl is frosted plastic, and it has a pretty flared shape that makes it a nice serving piece. The colander basket is bright green, matching the cord handle, and the company says it’s heat resistant so it can double as a colander for hot foods, like pasta and potatoes.
Buy It: $33
Westmark Vegetable And Salad Spinner With Pouring Spout
Type: Manual, knob/crank
Capacity: ~5 quarts
Westmark’s take on the salad spinner uses a rotating crank to spin the colander inside. The crank is easier to turn than some of the other models on our list, but if you don’t turn it just right, it tends to skid over the basket.
The spinner is also pretty loud, and it doesn’t have any sort of grips to hold it on the counter, so unless you hold it tight, it might skid right off the counter. In our testing, the spinner didn’t drain quite as much water from our greens as the other spinners. The bowl has a decorative frosted design on the side and can be used for serving, and we liked that that the lid can be inverted for storage so the knob won’t stick out.
Buy It: $21 or Walmart
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The Best Overall Salad Spinner: Oxo Good Grips Glass Salad Spinner
This newer offering from OXO was among the top performers in all of our tests. It dried lettuce efficiently, handled delicate herbs without bruising them, and was able to fit 10 ounces of mixed greens without compacting them. The spinners design, versatility, and stability put it ahead of the pack. On first impression, its bowl felt too heavy . During use, though, this weight provided an advantage and kept the salad spinner from wobbling. The glass base also doubled as a nice serving bowl.
Zyliss Swift Dry Salad Spinner Large
Type: Pump-operated, push lever
Capacity: 5.75 quarts
The SwiftDry Salad spinner uses the same plastic bowl and unusually shaped spin basket as its pull-cord model. But this version has a lid with a lever that pops up. Pushing the lever down will activate the spinning motion through a series of gears that you can actually see through the translucent green plastic housing if you look underneath the lid.
The lever takes some force to push it down, but once the bowl gets spinning the lever is easier and easier to push, and it can be done with one hand. The brake stops the spinning immediately, which the company says will help “fluff” the greens. We did feel like the rapid momentum that the lever motion was able to achieve, coupled with the sudden braking, helped shake every bit of water off the leaves, making this a very effective salad spinner. And the flat design of the lid makes it ideal for storing the greens right in the spinner.
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Also Great: Oxo Stainless Steel Salad Spinner
*At the time of publishing, the price was $50.
If youre looking for a salad spinner that also serves as an attractive serving bowl, we think its worth investing in the OXO Stainless Steel Salad Spinner. Its drying performance was nearly identical to the Good Grips, as its pump and brake mechanisms and basket construction are, in almost every regard, exactly the same. The main difference we noticed between the Good Grips and the Steel lies in their basesthe OXO Steels base is completely coated in a nonslip, rubbery material to help its bowl stick to the counter more stably while pumping, while the Good Grip has a minimal ring around the edge. But given that our pick is usually $20 less, we think the Good Grips is a better investment for most people.
The lids on the Steel and the Good Grips are not interchangeable. Michelle Sohn, a member of OXOs tools and gadgets designing team, told us that, The OXO Steel Salad Spinner and the OXO Good Grips Salad Spinner are two different products with different parts that function the same way. In 2012, OXO redesigned the Good Gripss pump to increase space in its inner basket, while the Steels pump didnt change. The OXO Steel still has pump and brake mechanisms that are almost identical to the those of the Good Grips, and most important, its still incredibly easy to use.
What Are The Other Options
Niitawh Salad Spinner: We considered this model as an option for our best budget pick. It’s certainly cute and the handle makes it easy to hold, but, during testing, the handle did break off pretty easily . When it came time to dry lettuce, it was too small for a full head of romaine and the spinning mechanism was uncomfortable. Between these issues and that it can’t be washed in a dishwasher leads us to not recommend it.
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Best Pull Cord Salad Spinner: Zyliss Easy Spin Salad Spinner
Type: Pull cord
Capacity: 5 quarts
This updated version of Zyliss’ classic salad spinner has a redesigned spin basket that’s designed differently from other spinners. Instead of being perfectly round, it has wide ribs, and is designed to “fluff” the salad when you hit the brakes on the spinner. We’re not sure if this design is any more effective than a traditional round bowl, but overall the spinner performed well, yielding greens that were fairly dry.
The handle is wide and comfortable even someone with limited mobility would have no trouble getting a grip on it. The handle retracts even when it’s purposefully kept pulled out, so there’s no need to ever rewind it manually. The shape of the basket makes it annoying to clean, but the outer bowl is dishwasher safe. The whole thing can double as a serving bowl or storage container, and the spinning mechanism fits flat into a holder on top of the lid so it doesn’t stick out when it’s stored.
Buy It: $35
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How Do You Use A Salad Spinner
The answer to this will depend on the type of spinner you purchase, but as far as basics go, prepare your ingredients by chopping up vegetables, greens, fruits, or whatever you plan to wash and dry in the spinner. Place those ingredients in the basket and run cold water over the basket to thoroughly flush the dirt and debris. Place the basket in the work bowl and affix the lid. Start spinning via crank, plunge, pull-cord, or twist-knob, depending on your style of spinner. Stop once you see water in the bottom of the bowl with dirt or debris in it. Remove your ingredients and move to the next one.