On test: The best box graters

We’ve found the best box graters for every task in your kitchen, from nutmeg and garlic to cheese and chunky vegetables.

Our top five box graters

Best… innovation

IKEA grater
 
 
Värdefull grater
 
Key features: Can grate in both directions, has a handy area for catching food and has a really good fine grate function.  
Price: £7
Number of grades: Two (coarse and fine)
Comments: This thrifty grater has some nice features – it sits flat on the work surface and doesn’t wobble about, avoids mess by catching gratings and you can grate back and forth as the sharp blades are double-sided. 

Buy from IKEA
 

Best… investment buy

Joseph Joseph graterJoseph Joseph Fold Flat grater plus

Key features: A stylish design (it would make a great wedding present) and excellent for storage. 
Price: £30
Grades: Four (coarse, medium, fine and slicer)
Comments: Joseph Joseph excel in space-saving kit, and this fold-action grater is no exception. Each of the four grating surfaces works well, especially the fine function, which would give you excellent Parmesan shavings. 

Buy from Joseph Joseph
 

Best… budget buy

DunelmDunelm grate ‘n’ store

Key features: A handy plastic tub for storage and no-nonsense design. 
Price: £4.99
Grades: Four (coarse, medium, fine and slicer)
Comments: This grater has a nice large surface area and comes with a bonus storage container. It’s comfy to use, however it’s quite a bulky shape and feels a little flimsy, although for that price it’d be rude to complain. 

Buy from Dunelm
 


Best… design

Davina for LakelandDavina for Lakeland grater

Key features: Compact design and handy cap at the bottom that minimises mess. 
Price: £11.99
Grades: Three (coarse, medium and fine)
Comments: This dinky grater has a comfy handle and a very nifty cap to contain all shavings in one place ready to be transferred to a pan or bowl. It’s slimline and attractive, and should nestle neatly in a drawer for storage. 

Buy from Lakeland
 

Best… sharpness

Stellar acid etchedStellar four-way box grater

Key features: Acid-etched blades for optimum sharpness. 
Price: £13.99
Grades: Four (coarse, fine, ribbon and shaver)
Comments: Acid-etching purportedly creates the sharpest blades, and this Stellar grater can attest to that. It feels really sturdy, but the finest setting isn’t the best – you might need to supplement it with a fine grater for Parmesan and nutmeg.

Buy from Legend Cookshop
 

Buyer’s advice

Why buy? 

Flat graterUnless you own a food processor, it’s tricky to get uniform shavings using anything other than a grater. They cost as little as a couple of pounds and will save you heaps of time. From whipping up rosti, coleslaw and fritters to making light work of courgette, garlic and cheese, a grater is pretty much a kitchen essential. 

What to buy

Graters come in a few different shapes and sizes. Flat graters come with a straight sheet of metal and, usually, a plastic handle; They win on the storage front. Box graters often have a larger surface area for grating, and the shavings neatly gather in the centre. Microplane graters have extra fine blades, making them perfect for grating spices or garnishes. We think these sit in a category of their own. As there are so many different kind of graters, we chose to test the box variety only. 

What we looked for

Grater with sausagesSurface area of the grater: The bigger the surface area, the quicker you can complete the task in hand. 
Sharpness: We looked for a blade that made uniform shavings in one clean sweep, not subpar, blunt blades that were awkward to manoeuvre.
Number of grades: Ideally a box grater has four different settings, all as good as each other. 
Sturdiness: Wobbly metal and boxes that didn’t balance well were marked down. 
Extra functions: We looked for graters that were collapsible or had handy extras, like clever storage capacity. 
Ease of storage and cleaning: Graters are one of the most tricky kitchen items to clean. We looked for dishwasher-friendly graters that scrub up as new and can be hung or stored flat in a small amount of space. 

How we tested

We tested using Parmesan, carrot, cheddar, courgette, lemon and ginger, grated to various thicknesses. 

What didn't make the cut? 

Blunt and flimsy graters.

This review was last updated in May 2016. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at goodfoodwebsite@bbc.com. 

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