Flour sifters are strainers that have a fine mesh screen that is housed in a container. They’re used to pass dry, fine powdered ingredients through so that the end food product is free of lumps.
This can be particularly useful when making cakes and pastries which are considered to be spoiled if a lump or two are found within. When I want to make my best baked-goods I prefer the Nonpro Hand Crank Sifter. Check it out at Amazon.
Sifting these particles also helps loosen the particles and free the locked air and moisture that has been imparted to the bulk during storage. This moisture and air affect the volume of the flour or grains that are being measured, thereby increasing the likelihood of mis-measurement.
Other than these, there are hygienic reasons to sift through fine powder as well such as separating impurities and insects that have found their way into the container.
Flour sifters are used for flour first and foremost, but they can also be used for spices, sugar or fine grains of any type.
More than for sifting, the flour sifters can be used to mix sugars, spices, and grains together if they need to be blended together to be added to the final recipe.
While commercial packaging has rendered virtually all flour sifted and lump free, there are still lumps to be found when you sift through it. And for particularly light and delicate textures for things like genoise and angel food cake, sifting is a must.
Sifting flour over your work surface like a slab or a kitchen table before you knead dough can also benefit the final product.
Since sifting flour can indeed benefit the final product to this extent, it’s worth taking a look at the best flour sifters you can buy on the market today.
Bellemain 3 Cup Flour Sifter
The Bellemain Stainless Steel 3 Cup Flour Sifter is strong and lightweight at the same time, a combination that lends itself to a lot of continuous use during baking. It can hold more flour and powdered sugar than most which are made for domestic use.
The sifter includes a very reliable hand crank mechanism which gives you more control over the proportion and layering. Also, the hand crank mechanism is less tiring than the squeeze mechanism and is very simple to operate. This can make it easier for older chefs and bakers to use; even those with arthritis can benefit from the smooth operation.
The cleanup is also very simple since there are no multi-layers where lumps can get stuck. There is also a double loop agitator which makes sure that there are no lumps stuck inside the sifter once the job has been done.
While this isn’t strictly a flour sifter, it works just as well and is very simple to use. The strainer is made of stainless steel and comes in three different sizes depending on what you want to sift. The design is thus great for dry ingredients and for most applications like baking cakes or pastries and brownies.
The materials are also dishwasher safe and the package comes with a limited lifetime warranty which means you can get the strainers replaced even if they get bent or broken during use.
Norpro Hand Crank Flour Sifter
The Norpro stainless steel flour sifter has quality construction and old fashioned design that is beautifully put together. There’s also a 2 wire agitator included that ensures there is no wasted flour.
The combination of the agitator and the hand crank allows for the very fine and evenly layered powder to come out. This is perfect for making cakes which require a delicate texture such as marble cake and angel’s food cake.
MaMix Hand Crank Flour Sifter
The MaMix stainless steel baking hand crank flour sifter looks like a very simple tool because it is, and it’s all the better for it. It is strong, but lightweight construction makes sure that you don’t tire while you use it and its fine mesh gets rid of all the big lumps that you wouldn’t want inside your masterpiece.
The hand crank mechanism is also easier on the hands than the squeeze mechanism that other sifters use.
It has a 3 cup size which is ideal for a sifting job, and every so often on Amazon they will offer a turquoise color version, which lends itself to the bright and sunny optimism associated with baking.
Natizo Flour Sifter
The lid on the Natizo stainless steel flour sifter will make sure that there are no flour rings or spilled powdered sugar messes around the kitchen or inside the cupboards. There’s also a unique bottom cover that you can use while you store it.
There’s a 2 wire agitator and a hand crank mechanism that will get rid of any lumps. This, coupled with a 100% lifetime satisfaction warranty will give you peace of mind. You can ask for a full refund any time, however, you probably won’t need to since it’s made from rust-resistant stainless steel.
Chef Giant Flour Sifter
The hand crank mechanism in the Chef Giant flour sifter is particularly easy to operate and will let you produce a powder that is so fine that it will give the final product a fluffy texture and light feel to it.
It has a 16 fine mesh screen with a smaller weave and holes which can sift very fine powder. This will result in a much more consistent product than normal hand crank flour sifters.
The Chef Giant flour sifter is also made of corrosion resistant steel, something which will invariably help it last longer.
Flour sifters can help you invariably improve the final product and the ones listed above can provide the best fine powdered flour, sugars, or spices that you can mix in or pepper on your gastronomical masterpiece.
Can’t wait to sift? Read how to sift flour without a sifter.