I long thought squeeze bottles were for the kind of restaurant chefs who also need tweezers to plate a leaf of parsley. But then I came across the Oxo Good Grips Chef’s Squeeze Bottles and now I’m unsure how I ever cooked without them.
I first bought the bottles to accommodate my shrubs, those fruit and vinegar syrups that are so wonderful in drinks. The glass containers I had previously stored shrubs in dripped and spilled over every time I tried to pour the tangy liquid into a drink.
I knew a squeeze bottle was the answer, but the ones I had in the past weren’t ideal. They didn’t seal, a problem I half-solved by stretching a small piece of plastic wrap over the opening of the bottle before I attached the lid. I found bottles that came with a tiny cone-shaped cap to stick on the spout’s tip, but I knew I would lose these immediately.
Enter the Oxo Good Grips Chef’s Squeeze Bottle. The design is genius: the cap is leashed to the lid with flexible plastic, so it cannot go missing. You flip it open, and it stays out of the way while you pour, and then you snap it shut. The act of capping the bottle also clears the nozzle of any excess liquid, so the next time you use it, it flows freely.
Since I bought them for shrubs, I’ve found a variety of uses for the OXO squeeze bottles. Here are five more reasons to consider adding some squeeze bottles to your life:
If you’ve ever tried to make homemade mayonnaise or other emulsified sauces, you know it can all go terribly wrong in the blink of an eye. Because it’s safest to stream in the oil drop by drop in the beginning, a squeeze bottle is your best insurance policy. With its fine tip that allows for maximum control over pouring speed, you may never break a sauce again.
Actually use homemade condiments and salad dressings
When you have a homemade shrub, salad dressing, sauce, or condiment sitting in a squeeze bottle in the door of the refrigerator, I dare you not to think up a million ways to use it. It’s so easy to grab, squirt, and put away. Most people are greatly deterred by even the smallest inconvenience—such as making a mess or needing a spoon—but decanting your homemade sauces into these squeeze bottles makes them just as convenient to use as Heinz ketchup.
Control your olive oil pour
When you are pouring glugs of olive oil directly from the bottle, it’s very easy to use a whole lot more than you really need. The squeeze bottle’s narrow tip slows the stream of oil down, meaning less risk of soggy, overly oil-laden roasted vegetables.
Make bulk buying easier
I love buying things in bulk. I’m currently going through a 2-quart jug of soy sauce and a gallon of maple syrup. I transfer a smaller amount to a squeeze bottle for everyday use, and stash the remaining stockpile in my basement. It’s greener to buy fewer large packages (instead of many smaller ones) and my squeeze bottles make buying in bulk like this practical.
Pretty up your plates
Okay, I may not be the type to drizzle swooshes of gastriques or reductions all over my plate, but perhaps you are. I know if the time ever comes when I need perfect pretty dots, doodles, or other designs on my food, I have the perfect tool to create them.
Originally Appeared on Epicurious