The 10 Best Fat Separators
This wiki has been updated 22 times since it was first published in March of 2016. As the saying goes, fat is flavor, but too much of a good thing can be harmful to your health. Be kind to your body and keep your calorie intake down by using one of these separators, which come in handy for removing unwanted grease and oil when you’re preparing broths, soups, and lump-free gravy. They can also be used to reserve drippings to cook with at a later date. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
May 05, 2020:
A fat separator is a must for any home cook who prepares soup, broth, or gravy – even if it’s just around Thanksgiving. It’s a great way to remove unwanted grease, oil, and fat from your food, for a healthier finished product that contains fewer calories. In this update, we kept the Cuisipro 4 Cup at the top of the list because its quality and convenience are tough to beat. It offers a 4-cup capacity, which should be more than enough, even for a big turkey dinner, and it pours your gravy straight from the bottom, thanks to a silicone-plugged hole that can be opened up with you press the lever on the handle. This design makes for less mess and easy cleanup.
Today we added in the compact, easy-to-use Fatsoff Scoop, which is great for anyone who doesn’t want to have to find storage space for a large pitcher design. Just dip it into your stockpot and the fatty liquid on top will become trapped under the scoop’s funnel and make its way into the cup. At that point, just lift it out dispose of it. It’s a budget-friendly choice that made of plastic and weighs only three pounds. If it’s a tempered glass model you’re looking for, check out the newly added Fox Run 5597, which holds hot liquids like a champ. It features measurement markings in both cups and milliliters and comes with a red, vented silicone lid that serves as a strainer. While it’s safe for the dishwasher, some prefer to hand wash it to ensure no damage is done to its delicate, long spout.
We also added in the Vondior 4 Cup, a plastic model that stands up well to both hot and cold temperatures, and comes with a durable tool with a stainless steel blade for peeling, shaving, and slicing fruits and vegetables. Also included is an attractive gift box, which makes this a nice present for the cook in your life. In turn, we removed the Catamount Heat Resistant, which has a hard time handling temperature changes, as well as the Trudeau Gravy, the holes of which are too large to keep out smaller particles. We also replaced the Just Go Smarter Multi Purpose, the bottom mechanism of which is known to leak.
No-Spill Gravy Separator You can easily take the fat, grease, and oil out of the equation with this handy device. Just pour your liquid into it straight from the pot, and watch the juices separate quickly from the fat. The silicone spout keeps messy drips at bay while the stopper keeps the unwanted fat from making its way out. It’s equipped with a comfortable handle and a spout so low that you’ll be able to pour out every bit of your gravy or soup. Measurements are clearly marked in milliliters, ounces, and cups, and it’s heatproof up to 675 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s also safe for the microwave, freezer, stovetop, and dishwasher. williams-sonoma.com
What Exactly Is A Fat Separator And Why Do You Need One?
There are two main types of fat separators: pitchers and bottom drainers.
As much as it might be nice to believe, fat separators don't separate fat from your body. Rather, they are used to separate fat from pan drippings before making sauces, gravies, and soups. For this reason, they are also sometimes referred to as gravy strainers or soup strainers. They look very much like a standard measuring cup, albeit with a few minor, yet integral, modifications.
There are two main types of fat separators: pitchers and bottom drainers. Pitcher-style fat separators have a handle on one side and a long spout on the other. Unlike spouts on traditional pitchers, this spout stems from an opening at the bottom of the side, rather than the top. Bottom-drainers have a plugged hole on the bottom through which liquid can drain out when opened. Both varieties have a strainer that sits at the top of the container to catch any large chunks of meat, seasonings, or vegetables, which can be added to your sauce or gravy later, or discarded.
Having the hole or spout stem towards the bottom of the fat separator is vital. If you have ever left a pot of soup or meat-based sauce on the counter to cool, or left it in the fridge overnight, you have probably noticed that the fat and liquid naturally separate, with the fat rising to the top and the rest of the liquid sinking to the bottom. This is because fat and oil are less dense than most other liquids. Traditionally one would have had to use a spoon to slowly ladle out the fat bit by bit. With a fat separator, that tedious task is no more. Instead, one just has to leave the gravy base on the counter to cool long enough for the fat and other liquid to separate. Once that has happened, simply use the spout to pour the desired liquid into another container, or open the bottom hole via a lever to let it drain out. The unwanted fat will be left in the container to use for another purpose or discard.
What To Look For In A Fat Separator
A fat separator seems like a relatively simple invention, but there are few properties that make some models better suited to the task than others. For example, most people will appreciate having one with a clear cup. This makes it easier to see when the fat and liquid have finished separating, rather than having to guess at it with a non-transparent model. When making your purchase, it is important to choose one that is made from glass or heat-resistant plastic. Due to the nature of the task performed with a fat separator, you will be pouring very hot liquids into it, often directly from a pot that has just been removed from the stove or oven.
If purchasing a pitcher-style model, a spout stopper is another handy little feature that can help to prevent spillage.
Another handy feature is clearly-labeled measurement markings. If you are making a recipe that calls for a very exact amount of liquid, having a fat separator with measurement markings eliminates the need to use a measuring cup, meaning one less dish to wash at the end of the night. While on the topic of cleaning, we would be remiss if we didn't steer you towards a model that is dishwasher safe. After all, who really wants to have to scrub out their fat separator at the end of the night when it is so much easier just to toss it in the dishwasher and walk away?
Since you are pouring piping hot liquids into your fat separator, choose one with a wide top opening for safety purposes. The easier it is to pour liquids into the container, the less chance there is of accidentally burning yourself by spilling some out over the edges. Another feature that can help improve your ability to use your separator safely is a comfortable and study handle. It is best to buy a model that fits nicely in your hand, providing you with a secure grip.
While not necessarily as important as some of the other properties, it is nice to have a model with an easily removable strainer. It is no fun to fumble around with a strainer overflowing with bits of steaming hot meat and cooked down vegetables that just won't seem to slip off, as this just increases the chance of accidentally knocking the whole thing over and spilling it. If purchasing a pitcher-style model, a spout stopper is another handy little feature that can help to prevent spillage.
The Dangers Of Too Much Fat In Your Diet
If just making better tasting, better quality sauces, gravies, and soups wasn't enough of a reason to start using a fat separator, then how about better health. While the human body does require an adequate amount of fat and cholesterol, it is no secret that most people consume far too much. One only needs to look at the plethora of weight-loss pills, drinks, and other supplements available on the market to know that many people struggle with their weight. In fact, according to the National Health Center for Statistics, 36 percent of adults and 17 percent of youths are obese. That's a scary thought when one considers the numerous health problems being overweight or obese can lead to.
Consuming too much fat can also cause high cholesterol, which is aptly named the silent killer since people are often unaware of their situation until it is too late.
Excess body weight is a contributing factor to the onset of diabetes. Roughly 90 percent of diabetics are overweight. This isn't just a coincidence. It is a known fact that overweight people are at a significantly higher risk for type 2 diabetes. This is because too much fat in the body impairs its ability to produce insulin and regulate blood sugar levels.
Consuming too much fat can also cause high cholesterol, which is aptly named the silent killer since people are often unaware of their situation until it is too late. Cholesterol can accumulate in the arterial walls, narrowing them to a point where blood flow is reduced, resulting in a heart attack. The combination of too much fat and cholesterol may lead to stroke. This occurs when the blood flow to the brain is severely hampered, usually by clogged arteries. At the same time, being overweight forces the heart to work harder to properly circulate the blood, resulting in high blood pressure, the number one cause of stroke.