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What is a Sieve Used for in Cooking?

A sieve is a type of strainer made of mesh. Mesh is a net-like structure with evenly placed pores.

What Types of Sieves are Available?

Sieves are available in various sizes and shapes and are made of different metals like stainless steel or aluminum, resin, silicone, fiber, or cloth.

What is a sieve used for in cooking?
Sieves are Available in a Variety of Materials and Fineness of Mesh

Sieves made of fiber or cloth are typically known as cheese cloth, jelly bag strainers, or nut milk bag strainers. These aren’t covered in this article. but links to articles on each are in the previous sentence

The holes or perforations in the sieve vary from the super fine mesh sieve and up through medium and large mesh, depending on the different requirements.

Super Fine Mesh Sieve
A Sieve Being use to Separate Smaller Solid Particles from Larger Solid Particles

Sieves are used to segregate solid from liquid or solids of larger particles from solids of smaller particles.

Mesh Size

The mesh with the size of holes 1/16 inch is a medium mesh. This mesh is used to strain liquids from solid food like vegetables, pasta, and more.

Fine Mesh typically has openings of about 1/32 of an inch.

A super fine mesh sieve is used for straining tea and dusting powdered products like sugar on bakeries. These are also marketed as ultra fine mesh sieves.

What is a Sieve Used for in Cooking?

Sieves are incredibly useful in the kitchen!

Sieve as Strainer

Some sieves are available with handles that are heat resistant, and they are used to remove hot water from boiled foods. These sieves can be placed on the bowl or other containers.

Sieve as Colander

One type of sieve which is a common kitchen appliance is a colander.

Colanders are usually available with a stand to place on a container that contains boiling water.

The primary purpose of a colander is to steam food and is also used to make stocks and juices of vegetables.

Many colanders are made of stainless steel as they used with high temperatures. The bowl-like colanders are either round or oval in shape.

Colanders typically have two handles. These are used to segregate hot water from boiled foods and wash fruits and vegetables as the water drains out quickly through the holes, leaving your clean produce behind in the colander.

Sieves can be used to Separate Egg Whites

Sieves have more to offer in a kitchen other than just straining the liquid from solid. A fine-meshed sieve helps in draining the egg white, separating it from the yolk.

Sieves can be used to make puree

A sieve helps to make a fine puree by draining the excess water from the pulp.

Sieves Keep Seeds out of Freshly Squeezed Juice

Squeezing lemons through a mesh will not let a single unwanted seed slip into the food.

Sieving Flour

When flour passes through a super fine sieve, it produces smooth batters or dough without clumps.

Dusting Baked Goods

A super-fine sieve can evenly distribute powdered sugar over baked goods, and it is just a matter of a single tap.

What is a Sieve Used for in Cooking?
Stainless Steel Sieve

Sieve as a Steamer

One can also use a sieve to steam small quantities of vegetables without using a steamer.

The handful of veggies can be placed in a medium sieve and set over a container with boiling water covering it with a lid. Then it is just a matter of a few minutes of wait, and it is done!


What is a Sieve Used for in Cooking? A lot!

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