Are you wondering why you’re not getting that fluffy and soft bread? While every step in the baking process is important and contributory to making good bread and other baked goodies, there is one that is often overlooked—sifting.
Do you realize that when you sift the flour and other ingredients, it gets aerated making it less dense and easy to mix and measure? Sifting also removes a lot of lumps which can potentially ruin the baked products.
You do realize the importance of picking the right sifter at this point right? But that might not be as easy as you might think. There are a lot of brands out there that’s competing for eye share and they are all trying to be better than the other.
Would you be able to pick the right one? Of course, you would. With this review, you will so read on.
Top 3 Picks :
What to Look for in a Flour Sifter
As I have already mentioned, there are a lot of brands out there that’s competing for your attention, but there are ways to distinguish a good sifter from the garden variety. While your baking needs are the ultimate standard of your buying decision, here are some of the qualities that you would look for in a sifter.
- Ease of operation
- Measuring marks
- Fineness of the wiremesh
How frequent are you baking huge recipes? If you do this often, then you need a sifter that’s larger. Large sifters will save you more time. Most sifters can range from 1 to 5 cups capacity.
My Top 5 Flour Sifters Reviews
Based on the criteria above, I went ahead and chose the best five for this review. I have personally tried these and I also considered other reviewers opinion in formulating my own. Although this listing is not exhaustive, these are the ones I’ve tried and would personally vouch for.
1. Bellemain 3-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter
If you’re looking for a flour sifter that has decent capacity and weight, the Bellemain 3-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter is a fine choice. It can sift 3 cups simultaneously and it weighs only 6 ounces. The hand crank is smooth and works flawlessly in removing lumps from the flour.The measurements are stamped on the stainless steel body and you can visibly read it both inside and out.
For people suffering from arthritis, the handle is ergonomic enough to handle. To me, this speaks a lot about the level of care the manufacturer puts into it.
This sifter is roomy enough to allow huge quantities of flour or sugar and it aerates dry ingredients well resulting in fluffier and lighter baked goodies.
- It’s lightweight but sturdy
- Has enough room for 3 cups of sugar and flour
- Highly readable measurements
- Single mesh and highly reliable hand crank
- All you need to do is wipe it out to clean it
- The mesh tends to be larger
- The crank is harder to operate at times
2. Norpro Stainless Steel 3-Cup Rotary Hand Crank Sifter
Another good contender in the 3-cup sifter department is the Norpro Stainless Steel 3-Cup Rotary Hand Crank Sifter. It’s made from high quality lightweight stainless steel with a design that’s simple yet elegant. You can easily see the stamped measurement both inside and out and it has a dual wire agitator.
To use it, all you need to do is add the ingredients and turn the hand crank which is super smooth to operate.
If you’re baking cakes and other goodies with delicate texture, this is the sifter to use. You can even use it to dust food with a light dusting of sugar. You clean it by either washing or just wiping it.
- Highly readable measurement markings
- Made from light but high-quality stainless steel
- Decent capacity
- Easy to clean
- Smooth hand crank operation
- Double wire agitator ensures no flour is wasted
- Measurements are not precise
- Handle tends to be problematic for people with disabilities
- Flour can leak through the sides of the sifter
3. Natizo Stainless Steel Flour Sifter, 3-Cup
If you want to sift flour without the possibility of wasting it on the side of the sifter, the Natizo Stainless Steel Flour Sifter, 3-Cup is what you’re looking for. This is because it comes with a lid cover that protects the flour from spilling over the sides. This simple but useful improvement is really important particularly if you want to maintain the cleanliness of the baking area.
It has a single mesh and two wire agitator which ensures that no ingredient is wasted. These also ensure that flour and others ingredients are well aerated and properly sifted.
- 100% sifter and agitator performance
- Lid cover ensures no flour is wasted
- Durable hand crank, agitator and sifter. Made for long-lasting operations
- Cleaning is as easy as wiping it out
- Bottom lid does not fit well
- Flour can leak where the crank is located
- Mesh is sometimes too large for smaller particles
4. Cook N Home 8-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter
While it’s not a joke to be sifting 8 cups all the time, it’s a time saver if you’re looking at baking huge quantities.
This behemoth of a sifter can sift a maximum capacity of 8 cups without any hiccups because of its durable and sturdy build. Coupled with a strong stainless steel construction, this sifter is made for serious baking.
Mesh is also made of stainless steel and the wire agitator is easy to operate. The crank is decently smooth but tends to become harder as you add larger flour volumes.
- It’s biggest strength is its huge capacity
- Durable and sturdy stainless steel construction
- Easy and simple to clean
- The crank handle often comes off
- The mesh if too big for fine ingredients
- Measurements are inaccurate
5. Mrs. Anderson’s Hand Crank Baking Flour Sifter, 3-Cup Stainless Steel
Another 3-cup contender is the Mrs. Anderson’s Hand Cr an k Baking Flour Sifter, 3-Cup Stainless Steel. It removes lump easily through its fine wire mesh and agitator. It accomplishes decent aeration but may not be ideal for sifting powdered sugar.
It must be the kind of steel that’s used but I find it to be a bit heavy for its size. Nevertheless, its durable and sturdy being made of stainless steel.
- Breaks lumps with ease
- Accomplishes decent aeration
- Easy to clean and simple to operate
- Crank tends to be flimsy
- Too heavy particularly when full of flour
- Not ideal for powdered sugar
How Important is Sifting Flour to Baking
I have already mentioned aeration and removing lumps, but I believe I need to expound it further. Aerating flour by sifting it results in a light and delicate texture in your baked goodies. For cakes and pastries, this can be the difference between professional quality and a lumpy-and-bumpy-who-knows-where-it’s-made product.
Climate plays an important role in how the flour can clump and compact inside the bag. In humid tropical countries, it has been observed that flour packed more densely and a cup may actually weigh more. This means that you may actually be using more flour than you should, resulting in a dry and brittle product.
If the flour has been sitting in the bag for some time, there is a good chance that it is already compacted. It is a good idea to just go ahead and sift it before you actually start measuring out overly packed portions.
While a lot of recipes are more forgiving than others when it comes to measurement, simply sifting the flour results in more consistent quantity regardless of where you’re located. This adds up to a more predictable and consistent result.
Generally, if you’re trying to bake delicate products, you need to be precise with your measurements. This highlights the importance of sifting in the bigger picture of baking.
Lastly, it used to be that store-bought flours have creepy crawlies feeding on them. Although better production conditions in factories have made this less of a problem nowadays, it’s possible but bugs and bits of debris can still make it in the bag. You will save yourself from a huge headache later on by simply sifting the flour.
Flour Sifter Buying Guide
The market today has a wide range of brands of products. That makes it hard for people to get suitable deals of the best flour sifter. As a result of the long search the concern about who makes the perfect one arises all the time. One thing everyone must understand is that not all of the sieves are the same. Comparing various models and especially their features is key for you to select your ideal one. Below are a breakdown and guide on things to look out for when shopping for your tool.
Like any other products the quality of sifters available now is not equal. One obvious reason is that there are different manufacturers. And that means every one of them uses their preferred material. Some of the modern ones are therefore either made from plastic, aluminum, or stainless steel. Out of them of many bakers consider choosing stainless steel. Even though it is seen as the most reliable and suitable, ensure the select brand is rust resistance. If you opt for plastic, go for high-grade material that will withstand the suggested capacity and also stand the test of time. Overall, when buying a new sifter for baking purposes be sure to choose something that is safe and dependable.
Another thing that is worth considering during a purchase of baking tools is the size. Of course, measurements are ideal everywhere and so the kitchen is not an exception. Because manufacturers are different, the sifter every one of the designs can hold a quantity. Normally, most of the ones available have a capacity ranging from one to five average-size cups. The large capacity ones are big enough and so are ideal for commercial baking purposes. If you are buying flour sieves for use at home, the one that holds two to three cups will serve you well. However, before the search begins, understand your needs and try matching them to the type that is only used once in the same recipe.
Flour sifters are available in different designs and with varying features. From manually operated types to the electronic sieves, it is certain that everyone will get something suitable. Compare the makes of the handles and go for the best of your choice that offers money value. Choose accordingly because you will find that some are excellent for use by individuals having some health conditions like arthritis. But, to make the buying process such a breeze, check for something with features that are comfortable and perfectly fitting in your hands.
User reviews are one useful thing that is worth considering while purchasing any product. Referring to the feedback the previous buyers of a particular model of flour sifter says is essential. If they are genuine you can learn about the pros and cons and even any other important issue or experiences during the daily uses. So, be sure to check the manufacturer’s website or the place you want to purchase from and read what others say.
How do you use a flour sifter?
When planning to purchase a flour sifter and yet you do not understand how it is used then that is more of wasting of time, money, and efforts. So, it is good to get comprehensive information about the right way to use this new tool. This means you will not only get the best results but also enhance the taste of the food in the best manner possible. Here is all you need to know to enable you to use it in an efficient and effective manner.
The sifting process begins by properly setting the sifter into a bowl. Then pour the quantity of flour depending on the dish to be prepared from the top. Leave the loose flour to rest in the mesh for some minutes. Pick up the sifter ensuring that it is completely placed in the bowl well. The reason is that some particles will be falling as the process of sifting continues.
So, being cautious helps in reducing any mess in the working area and also it helps you get an accurate measurement. Of course, some recipes are well done when you balance all the ingredients. From there you can carefully start cranking the sifter and keep doing it slowly. Practicing this will guarantee you achieve the best and optimal results.
Additionally, you must ensure that all the flour passing through the sifter gets into the bowl. The texture should look soft and even without any lumps. Continue cranking your sifter until all of the flour lands into your mesh basket.
When there is no more flour in the sifter it is good to shake it to remove the loose particles remaining on the surfaces. At this time, you can hit it gently on the sides of the bowl. With this, all of the flour will come out without applying a lot of effort.
Doing this also makes cleaning the flour sifter easy and then it is stored appropriately. You can place it in a different place or a bag. When you have finished cranking ensure you clean it because this removes the remaining particles. It also helps you keep your kitchen space clean and neat.
When considering to wash the sifter, it is a good idea to shake off the left-over flour into the dustbin. It is safer if you hold the device using one hand and then slowly bang it to the other side.
What is the difference between a strainer and a sifter?
A sifter is more like a tool that is used to sieve and separate required materials from unwanted elements. In the case of baking purpose, a filter like a net or a mesh is used to remove some things from the flour. When cooking, flour sifter is especially utilized to help aerate the main ingredient from other things.
On the other side, a strainer is some type of sieve usually used in draining solid foods from a liquid. For instance, a kitchen utensil having a shape similar to a bowl like a colander has holes in it.
What does sifting flour do?
The process of sifting is often applied to help break up lumps that could be available in the flour. As the particles are pushed through a tool like a cup having a strainer on one end it becomes aerated. Sifted flour is particularly lighter than the unsifted one so when making the dough it will be easy to mix the other ingredients in it.
Sifting flour together with dry elements helps in combining them uniformly before mixing the other ingredients. The process also is a way of getting consistent measurements for use in a recipe.
Why do you use a flour sifter?
The use of a flour sifter is mainly associated with two things. The design of this tool on one side allows it to evenly spread the powder while it is dropping in the bowl. When adding the other ingredients and then scooping it is easy if the particles are well distributed. The reason is it gives a proper blend and mixture.
This tool is a better way of incorporating all the dry ingredients. When the particles are well spread out and thoroughly mixed together, you will end up with a nice dough without a fuss.
Do you wash a sifter?
Many recipes need the flour to be sifted using the special utensil, a flour sifter. Because they are handy tools they also need to be cleaned. Traditional ways may fail to work for you, but it is good to get the best way to do it to avoid throwing it away. While buying a new one may sound good but keeping it clean now is more efficient.
Before you wash it is better to lightly shake off the leftover flour. Then clean it in the best way possible either in a dishwasher or the regular dish detergent and water.
How important is sifting flour?
In many instances, sifting is worth the extra step. Flour and other dry ingredients tend to have clumps in the packages and after exposure to air. It will be terrible if the sift is skipped as you are likely to find pockets of dry ingredients in your dough and baked food. This process is done when a new packet of flour is opened to avoid repeated sifts. Once it is completed sifting will not be necessary each time the flour is needed. The reason is that the way the flour comes when packed and unpacked is different.
Does sifting flour increase volume?
When this is done, the air is often added into it, making it lighter, removes any lumps, and increases the volume. There are recipes that need the measurement to be done first before sifting. Others need cooks to do this differently by sifting the flour before measuring it. when the flour is left to sit, it gently settles and becomes more compact. And of course, a cup of flour that is sifted can weigh 20percent- 25percent less than the same amount that has been left to settle. This difference significantly impacts the results in the dough by making baked foods denser.
The clear winner in this review is the Bellemain 3-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter. The lightweight and sturdy construction is a killer because all the other contenders tend to be heavy. This is particularly true of the Cook N Home 8-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter. The weight may be due to the capacity but a lighter material could really help in that case.
Three cups is the typical sifting capacity needed for most baking unless you really want to bake huge batches. This eliminates the 8-cup contender. I’m all for the highly readable measurements because you need to be precise particularly for delicate baking.
All the other sifters suffered from the single mesh allowing some finer particles to escape so it’s really a minus for all the sifters reviewed.
Have you tried any of these flour sifter? Kindly share your success story in the comment section below.