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.
||The Bellemain 3-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter||
||The Norpro Stainless Steel 3-Cup Rotary Hand Crank Sifter||
||The Natizo Stainless Steel Flour Sifter, 3-Cup||
||The Cook N Home 8-Cup Stainless Steel Flour Sifter||
||Mrs. Anderson’s Hand Crank Baking Flour Sifter, 3-Cup Stainless Steel||
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.
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What to Look for in a Flour 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 Five Flour Sifters
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.
The 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.
The 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
The Natizo Stainless Steel Flour Sifter, 3-Cup
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
The 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
Mrs. Anderson’s Hand Crank Baking Flour Sifter, 3-Cup Stainless Steel
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
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.