Left: Courtesy of Amazon Right: Andy Lyons
It's super important to give your leafy greens (as well as all produce) a thorough wash before turning them into a delicious salad. But it's also a major bummer when digging into a salad only to realize the greens are all wet, sad, and wimpy. If you frequently enjoy cool, crisp lettuce in restaurant salads, I can assure you the same amazing quality can be achieved from your home. How? Enter OXO's salad spinner to save your salads! I know what you're thinking—another single-use food tool to take up cabinet space, but it actually has quite a few creative uses beyond salad (more on that later). So if you're a salad lover like me that loathes soggy lettuce, a salad spinner is the most efficient way to wash greens and dry them to crunchy perfection in no time.
OXO Good Grips Salad Spinner comes with three parts: a 6.22-quart bowl, a 4.95-quart colander, and a spinner lid with a pump that locks in place when not in use. To use the salad spinner, place rinsed greens in the colander (which comes in green or white) before resting in the clear bowl. Press down on the button and the basket will start spinning. After several pumps, press the brake button to stop the spinner. Now you can remove the basket, be in awe of all the water that was removed for you to empty from the bowl, and admire those crisp salad greens.
Courtesy of Amazon
This is not a new invention—OXO released the first edition of its famous salad spinner in 1998—but the newest model features an easy-to-clean lid that comes apart. It also features a non-slip base to keep the bowl from sliding around on the countertop (that many of the 14,000+ positive Amazon reviewers rave about) as well as a built-in brake button that quickly stops the salad spinner. The large bowl can also be cleaned after spinning greens and used to serve your beautiful salad. If the 6-quart salad spinner seems too big for your kitchen needs, consider OXO's Little Salad Spinner ($25, Amazon), which comes with a 3-quart bowl.
This handy salad spinner is definitely my go-to to get greens ready for main dishes on busy days or summer nights when it's too hot to cook. But dry lettuce is not all the salad spinner can accomplish. Easily spin-dry fruits (hello, strawberry pie!), veggies, and herbs. I buy a lot of cilantro, and cleaning bunches is a breeze. You can even use it to remove excess water after rinsing beans or drying cooked noodles for pasta salads and to wrap summer rolls. There are also creatives uses for the salad spinner beyond food such as removing excess water after handwashing kitchen linens such as delicate tea towels, cheesecloth, or nut milk bags. I think I'll have to try it on reusable paper towels ($13, Hive) next.