Mrs. Sell's Blog of Household Management

Do you need a batter bowl?

I have a lot of mixing bowls. I have my set of Pyrex glass bowls that are shaped (but not patterned) exactly like my mother’s. I have a set of stainless steel that my husband had. I have a set of plastic storage bowls with lids that I use for mixing, proofing and storing dough. And I have several random plastic bowls of various sizes that can be used for mixing up batters and doughs. So why do I also find myself in possession of this?

batter bowl top

This is the OXO Good Grips Batter Bowl. It’s small for a mixing bowl, only about two quarts, although I can still fit my hand mixer in there.

batter bowl with mixer

It’s got a small pour spout, a handle covered in a black grippy material, and measurements markings on the inside.

batter bowl interior

The black handle grip material extends down to the bottom of the bowl, so it doesn’t slide around while mixing.

batter bowl side

Since I make cupcakes and pancakes all the time, I’m always looking for better ways to transfer the batter either into muffin tins or onto a griddle. Regular mixing bowls are not known for their ease of pouring, especially heavy glass ones. Usually the lips are designed to keep stuff in, so trying to pour usually ends up being a mess of too much batter, and extra dripping all over the sides and the countertops. So I shopped around, and decided to see if a batter bowl would make my life easier.

Batter bowls are pretty popular right now, so you can take your pick of the OXO (cheap or expensive version, seem to be identical), fancy stoneware,  glass, and many others. Fundamentally, they all share two things: 1) a pour spout, and 2) a handle.

Truthfully, I am conflicted about this bowl. I want to say that I don’t really like it, that it didn’t do what I needed it to do, but at the same time I find myself pulling it out and using it almost every day. Here’s the bald truth:

The spout: It’s too small to really pour well. While better than a regular mixing bowl, the spout is too wide to pour thick batter into cupcake papers or onto a griddle. If you had a very thin batter, it would probably work great, but both my cupcake and pancake batters are very thick, and just spill out all around the spout.

Otherwise…

1) It’s a great size for what I normally mix: a half batch of pancakes, a packet of cake or muffin mix, even a chicken mixture for enchiladas. It was hard to get used to at first, because I was accustomed to using larger mixing bowls for those things, but in reality, this does the job just as well.

2) Because it’s a little taller and narrower than my other bowls, it holds the batter higher and ensures that the entire beaters of the hand mixer are down in the batter, instead of just the bottom half. I feel like the beaters are more efficient this way.

3) The handle and bottom grip really do help, especially when I’m wrangling the hand mixer with one hand. The control it gives you is nice.

4) It’s LIGHT. I love my glass Pyrex bowls, but this is SO much easier to lift down out of the cabinet. On the other hand, it’s really, really easy to tip over and it has to be held down while using the mixer, because otherwise it would just fly away.

5) It is quite easy to clean. Batter comes right off.

Ultimately, while it completely failed to do what I needed it to do, I have to say that this is a great bowl, especially for someone who uses a lot of mixes and doesn’t bake in huge amounts. Serious cooks and bakers will need more than this, but this would be great for a dorm room, or first apartment type of situation.

Note: So far, my using metal beaters in it doesn’t seem to have hurt it, but I can’t imagine that it will last forever. Also, the red measurement markings are holding up, although I don’t really care about them.

Sometimes I think I wouldn’t mind having a couple more of these, maybe a Le Creuset, but then I remember how big my kitchen is (or isn’t). 😉 Maybe someday.

Also, my original problem of needing to pour batter in small, controlled amounts has not been resolved. I will do more research, and let you know what I find out.

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One thought on “Do you need a batter bowl?

  1. Heather on said:

    Dear Mrs. Sell,
    I am enjoying your blog so much, and love that you use the Kwik-Cut, one of my favorite kitchen tools. My grandmother had a friend who sold them, and she gave them to everybody, including me and my brother. She used hers (the serrated version) for everything! Such a good tool.

    I love batter bowls, and have several kinds, although I have a small kitchen too. Anchor Hocking makes 8- and 4-cup versions with handles, that are a nice tall shape, but the spout might be two small as you’ve experienced with your OXO bowl. You might try a vintage Pyrex Princess bowl. The “handles” are actually spouts in two different sizes, and they were made in so many great patterns and convenient sizes. These days I’m loving a clear glass, vintage (maybe 80s?) Pyrex batter bowl with a lip on one side for a handle and a nice spout on the other, and capacity markings molded into the glass. I especially like it because it goes into the dishwasher. I love my pretty Pyrex, but I wash it by hand to preserve the colors.

    Keep up the great blog!

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