The saying that a little bit can go a long way is not only just true for life in general, but also for cooking. Adding just a touch of acidity to a meal or drink can really heighten and elevate the taste and texture of your favorite dishes and cocktails — but nailing that perfect amount of zest can be difficult if you don’t have a zester.
You’ve probably seen a zester most commonly used as a grater for cheese, but they’re just as useful when it comes to shaving the perfect amount of fruit peel and adding a little more flavor to whatever you’re making. A zester contains small, etched blades that all you to get all that juicy flavor from the rind without causing a huge mess.
A handy tool to keep in your kitchen, zesters prove that just a dash of flavor can make a big impact. Here are four of our favorites to shop now.
1. Restaurantware Hand Zester
Want to look like a pro when zesting? Look no further than Restaurantware’s professional-level zester. With its cushioned, comfortable grip you’ll be able to keep a firm hold while you prep that perfect shaving. The extended grate allows you to easily hold the zester in one hand and your fruit in another while providing evenly shavings on top of whatever you’re prepping. Plus, the stainless steel ensures it will last a long, long while.
2. Victorinox Wood Handle Zester
Swiss brand Victorinox is well-known—and well-regarded—for their knives and multi-tools, which makes them well-suited to crafting a quality zester, too. Compact, sturdy and comfortable to use in your hand, the brand’s zester allows precision control. Built from stainless steel, the head will last for years and years if you take care of it properly, while staying sharp enough to accomplish any zesting task.
3. Microplane Classic Series Zester
There’s a good chance you’ve probably seen a Microplane zester without even realizing what it was, as the brand is nearly ubiquitous in home kitchens around the country. With a variety of colored handles, there’s certainly an option that will fit your personality. However, a zester is not useful if it doesn’t actually work—but no worries here. Microplane’s zester has a photo-etched plane that provides razor-sharp grating ability, which means you don’t have to put as much force into shaving that fruit. Plus, its cushioned handle just feels great to use.
4. Deiss Pro Citrus Zester & Cheese Grater
This zester by Deiss is a best seller on Amazon as it’s a high-quality utensil that won’t break the bank. The multipurpose design is fitted with a scalpel-like stainless steel blade that can tackle all manner of ingredients, from citrus and cheese to garlic and ginger. It also has unique curved sides that allow you to apply more force when required. Even better, this zester’s teeth won’t clog up like some of its competitors, and it can be easily cleaned with running water. When life gives you lemons, use this zester.