Grating cheese or other ingredients doesn't really sound like a difficult task but try grating a large amount with a grater with weak blades. The grater has undergone an amazing transformation. The main types are Flat Graters, Box Graters & Rotary Graters. The flat grater has a flat design with a handle on one end. You can grate cheese or vegetables by standing them up or lying them over a bowl. While they do a good job of grating, they are tedious to use. You can grate soft and sometimes hard cheeses and vegetables easily, depending on how sturdy your grater is. They often have a middle section for slicing. That usually works better for vegetables. Cheese is difficult to slice with that feature.
The Box grater however answered the call of those of us who got tired of cramping our hands to support the flat grater. Box graters are designed to stand and often have 3 to 4 sides that offer a different grind for each. I like the variety these graters have and the handle at the top along with the standing construction makes grating a lot easier.
These work well for most cheeses and vegetables. The coarse grate side is only good for hard cheese however. The grater is hollow inside which is a great way to contain your ingredients while grating. Some newer styles even have storage cups.
Finally you have the Rotary grater. Most of these have hand cranks but there are a select few that are electric. These graters usually have interchangeable grating drums that fit in the body of the grater. These are good for cheese but really stellar for vegetables like cabbage and zucchini. You typically feed the ingredients through the top opening and crank with the other hand.
The only issue with these graters is they can tend to clog if you are not careful due to the constant turning action. You should be checking the drums after each grating session to make sure it isn't getting full of leftover ingredients. The Rotary grater however is less work than the other previous methods. The grating drums can then be removed for washing.
At the end of the day, choosing the right grater has more to do with your personality. If you are always in a hurry or like short cuts, then the Rotary grater would be best. If you don't mind manual labor but want ease of use, you're probably going to prefer the Box grater. If you don't mind manual labor and don't cook much, the Flat grater is fine. Heck, you hardly cook anyway and when you do, it isn't high volume.
This list was comprised to show you all of the various types of graters and what they can do. From grating or slicing cheese and vegetables, the graters on this list are some of the best you can buy.
Best Box Grater:
One of the best things about a box grater is allowing the shredded ingredients to gather underneath it. It's easier than having to hover a hand held grater over the bowl to catch the food. Box graters make it easier to grate. The criteria for these five picks was simple. They needed to be very durable, have sharp blades and comfortable handles. You will love these picks and the way they simplify the grating process.
With the KitchenAid Box Grater Grate, you can easily grate and store with this awesome bonus addition. The grater overall does a good job of slicing and grating most vegetables and cheeses with the stainless steel blades. Both the grater and the storage container are dishwasher safe. Read Full Review
You can slice and grate with ease using the Trudeau 4 Sided Grater. The innovative nonstick and rust proof design on the blades makes it stand out. Feel confident that your ingredients will grate perfectly. It is commercial strength which makes it long lasting and sturdy. This is one grater that you won't regret buying. Read Full Review
Let this box grater take the hassle out of grating anything. It has a solid base and comfortable handle for grating vegetables or cheese. This is a good quality grater that will produce good results and is easy to clean. Read Full Review
The Sur La Table Four-Sided Grater is a good sized grater that will make grating more ingredients hassle free. The stainless steel blades guarantee precision grating or slicing. The smooth handle is comfortable and the stable base make for easy grating. Nothing fancy about this one, but it is solid and can give you good results. Read Full Review
I really like the performance and grating power of this durable box grater. The Microedge Box Grater and tri-blade design can grate anything you need without wearing out. The comfortable handle and bottom provide stability. This is a dependable, long lasting grater. Read Full Review
Best Cheese Grater:
When it comes to cheese graters, there many to choose from. Some are high performing, others are a flop. This list is all about the shining stars. I have chosen five stellar graters that are sure to meet anyone's needs and budget. Everyone must have a decent cheese grater. For my criteria, the best needed to be under $40, dishwasher safe, sturdy and good for both hard and soft cheeses. Browse these picks and choose a grater that will can give you everything you need.
Functionality and durability is what you get with this amazing grater. Grate a variety of soft and hard cheeses easily with superior results. The storage cup is a great feature and it stores discreetly into the grater when not in use. Read Full Review
The overall function of this grater is great. It did not make my top pick because it does not perform well for soft cheeses. It is best for grating hard, aged, firmer texture cheeses easily. This is a sturdy grater that everyone should have in their kitchen collection. Read Full Review
The IKEA CHOSIGT Cheese Grater with Container is a great buy. This two blade grater allows for diverse cheese grating for both soft and hard cheeses. As a bonus feature, it also has a container to collect and store cheese. Read Full Review
The Zyliss 2-Way Grater is a compact size which makes it easy to store. The 2-way blade design speeds up the grating process. Use it for hard or soft cheese and it's easy to clean. Read Full Review
Best Flat Grater:
Flat graters have been around for decades. Although there are many graters out there with high tech functions, a simple flat grater will do the job of grating well enough. For these picks, I looked for flat graters that were durable, had comfortable handles and were able to were easy to clean. You don't have to get fancy with graters. Any one of the picks below will give you great results.
The Chef's Stainless Steel Flat Grater can tackle any heavy duty grating job. It is large enough to grate vegetables such as cabbage and hard or soft cheese and even chocolate. The comfortable rubber handle prevents fatigue. Read Full Review
This is an amazing grater that has a durable, stainless steel construction. The handle is comfortable and the rubber feet provide great stability. Grating cheese and vegetables is easier due to the substantial surface area. Read Full Review
The Oxo medium Grater is a good option for anyone looking for a quality grater for cheeses and vegetables or fruits. The uniquely designed blades can grate in any direction quickly with minimal effort. Read Full Review
This is a throwback to the classic grater with a more durable and refined design. The medium and coarse grate works flawlessly to produce perfectly grated foods. The chrome construction prevents warping. All in all this is still a good grater that is strong enough for heavy use. Read Full Review
Best Rotary Grater:
I must admit that on more than one occasion I have grated my knuckles right along with the ingredient. This is not only painful but incredibly frustrating. Using a rotary grater would alleviate that risk. That said, I wanted to help take the guess work out of choosing the right one. The rotary graters on this list were chosen because they were sturdy, easy to clean and easy to assemble and disassemble.
The Zyliss Rotary Grater makes grating easy. You can switch smoothly from coarse to fine in an instant. Grate chocolate or even nuts. It's up to you. this high performing rotary grater can do it all. Read Full Review
This is a simple, well made grater that is sturdy and versatile. It comes with two blades offering both fine and coarse grates. The hand crank mechanism activates the grating process and turns out perfectly grated ingredients every time. Read Full Review
This is the simplest rotary grater you can own. It only has one drum and is constructed specifically for harder food items. It is a great kitchen tool that is suitable for professionals or home cooks. This is an easy way to quickly grate cheese or vegetables for salad or pasta. Read Full Review
I really love the simplicity and affordability of this grater. It is sturdy and easy to use. Choose the right grate for your dish from one of the two drums. The hand crank is easy and the blades consistently yields freshly grated foods and clean up is easy. Read Full Review